Exponentially decreasing tooth growth rate in horse teeth: Implications for isotopic analyses

R. Bendrey, D. Vella, A. Zazzo, M. Balasse, S. Lepetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A range of archaeological and palaeoclimatic studies use isotopic analyses of ungulate hypsodont tooth enamel. Such studies commonly assume a constant growth rate, though this has not been fully tested. Here, we use stable isotope analyses of sequential enamel samples to study horse tooth growth. We fit the data using models corresponding to constant and exponentially decreasing rates of growth, and compare the results to metrical data showing the geometry and timing of apposition. The results indicate enamel apposition and maturation advances at an exponentially decreasing rate. An understanding of this variable growth rate is crucial for interpreting isotopic data from equid teeth.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1104-1124
Number of pages21
JournalArchaeometry
Volume57
Issue number6
Early online date15 Dec 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015

Keywords

  • Equus
  • modelling
  • tooth growth rates
  • stable isotope analysis
  • tooth enamel bioapatite
  • sequential sampling

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