AUTOMATED SHAPE ANALYSIS OF TEETH FROM THE ARCHAELOGICAL SITE OF NERQIN NAVER
Traditional odontometry currently suggests a limited number of measurements on tooth coronal parts, including estimation of mesio-distal and vestibular-oral diameters, or dimension, through usually a single measurement of the maximal parameter. Taking into consideration the complexity, irregularity and variability of tooth shapes we find such measurements insufficient for interpreting tooth morphology. Thus we propose odontotomic approach of obtaining data from a series of parallel equally spaced sections in combination with automated detection of landmarks used for measurements. These sections allow locating maximal dimensions of teeth as well as collecting data from all parts of the tooth to describe it morphologically. Referring odontometric data to the whole tooth we obtain more precise and objective records which have proved to be informative in a series of dental and anthropological studies.
Growing interest and implementing of digital technology in odontometric studies calls for studies ensuring transition to new methods. The current research is aimed to undertake a comparative study of the traditional and automated digital odontometry. The influence of various approaches to odontotomy (number and direction of sections) on odontometric data is subjected to studies as well. The above-mentioned tooth shape analysis is applied to samples from the archaeological site of Nerqin Naver to contribute to complicated odontological studies from the Early Bronze burials.