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dc.contributor.authorBrown, WM-
dc.contributor.authorPrice, ME-
dc.contributor.authorKang, J-
dc.contributor.authorPound, N-
dc.contributor.authorZhao, Y-
dc.contributor.authorYu, H-
dc.identifier.citationProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105 (35): 12938 - 12943, (2008)en_US
dc.description.abstractBody size and shape seem to have been sexually selected in a variety of species, including humans, but little is known about what attractive bodies signal about underlying genotypic or phenotypic quality. A widely used indicator of phenotypic quality in evolutionary analyses is degree of symmetry (i.e., fluctuating asymmetry, FA) because it is a marker of developmental stability, which is defined as an organism's ability to develop toward an adaptive end-point despite perturbations during its ontogeny. Here we sought to establish whether attractive bodies signal low FA to observers, and, if so, which aspects of attractive bodies are most predictive of lower FA. We used a 3D optical body scanner to measure FA and to isolate size and shape characteristics in a sample of 77 individuals (40 males and 37 females). From the 3D body scan data, 360 degrees videos were created that separated body shape from other aspects of visual appearance (e.g., skin color and facial features). These videos then were presented to 87 evaluators for attractiveness ratings. We found strong negative correlations between FA and bodily attractiveness in both sexes. Further, sex-typical body size and shape characteristics were rated as attractive and correlated negatively with FA. Finally, geometric morphometric analysis of joint configurations revealed that sex-typical joint configurations were associated with both perceived attractiveness and lower FA for male but not for female bodies. In sum, body size and shape seem to show evidence of sexual selection and indicate important information about the phenotypic quality of individuals.en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipFinancial support was provided by a Higher Education Funding Council Grant to David Wright, a Brunel University BRIEF Award to J.K., and a British Academy Grant to W.M.B. and M.E.P.en_US
dc.publisherNational Academy of Sciencesen_US
dc.subject3D morphometricsen_US
dc.subjectBody shapeen_US
dc.subjectDevelopmental stabilityen_US
dc.subjectSexual dimorphismen_US
dc.subjectSexual selectionen_US
dc.titleFluctuating asymmetry and preferences for sex-typical bodily characteristicsen_US
Appears in Collections:Dept of Life Sciences Research Papers

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