F1000Research, Wellcome Open Research, (4), p. 24, 2019
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Bones are complex objects with considerable variation in the shape and structure often attributed to anatomical, environmental or genetic differences. In addition, bone shape has been of interest in relation to its associations with disease processes. Hip shape is an important determinant of hip osteoarthritis and osteoporotic hip fracture; however, its quantification is difficult. While previous studies largely focused on individual geometrical indices of hip geometry such as neck-shaft angle or femoral neck width, statistical shape modelling offers the means to quantify the entire contour of the proximal femur, including lesser trochanter and acetabular eyebrow. We describe the derivation of independent modes of variation (hip shape mode scores) to characterise variation in hip shape from dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) images in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) offspring, using statistical shape modelling. ALSPAC is a rich source of phenotypic and genotypic data which provides a unique opportunity to investigate the environmental and genetic influences on hip shape in adolescence, as well as comparison with adult hip shape.