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Int J Sports Med. 2000 Nov;21(8):545-50.

Physiological correlates of bilateral symmetry in humans.

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Computer Simulation Laboratory, School of Physical Education, Exercise and Sport Studies, University of South Australia, Underdale, Australia.


Departures from perfect bilateral symmetry are thought to mirror an organism's ability to maintain developmental homeostasis. There is evidence showing that symmetry is negatively correlated with evolutionary and physical fitness. The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between symmetry and health-related physiological characteristics in males and females. Forty-six male and female subjects participated in this study. Both facial and anthropometric traits were investigated for deviations from perfect bilateral symmetry. After measurements were made the subjects were tested on a range of physiological variables. There was no pattern of consistent significant correlations between fluctuating asymmetry and the physiological variables across all traits, and poor inter-correlations between the fluctuating asymmetries measured at different sites. The study failed to confirm the hypothesis that symmetric individuals were physiologically fitter when compared to their asymmetric counterparts.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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