Publication
Title
A critical re-evaluation of the association between 2D:4D ratios and fluctuating asymmetry in humans
Author
Abstract
Background: Both asymmetry and the second and fourth digit ratio (2D:4D) relate to various aspects of human life history. Higher asymmetry with extreme 2D:4D ratios have suggested a link between both processes, indicating that early development determines levels of developmental instability. However, most observed associations may be biased because combinations of the digit lengths are used as both dependent and independent variables. Aim: The present study explored the usefulness of asymmetry in digits 2 and 4 to study this association. Subjects and methods: A combination of literature review, a small simulation study, and a study of 2D:4D ratios and asymmetry in a total of 100 young males and females is presented. Results: Using asymmetry in digits 2 and 4 results in bias and increased type I error rates, leading to stronger associations between asymmetry and 2D:4D ratios. In spite of low sample sizes, significant associations between asymmetry measured in hands and face and 2D:4D ratios were detected for asymmetries in digits 2 and 4 only. Conclusions: Using asymmetry in digits 2 and/or 4 causes bias. Excluding such results, there is currently little evidence of any association between asymmetry and digit ratios. Future studies should carefully select traits to investigate these correlations further.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Annals of human biology. - London
Publication
London : 2009
ISSN
0301-4460
Volume/pages
36:2(2009), p. 186-198
ISI
000263815700006
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identification
Creation 13.03.2009
Last edited 01.08.2017
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