Cephalic Index in Purana Inhabitants at the Foot of Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

K. M. Chandimal, S. G. Yasawardene, G. Adikari

Abstract


Racial and ethnic differences in cranial morphology are documented. Geneticand non genetic factors such as climate and nutritional status are known to influence thecranial variation observed between human populations. The Cephalic index is importantwhen comparing the cranial morphology of the different ethnic groups in populations.The purana populations in Sigiriya facing imminent threat of extinction trace theirancestry to the times of the Sinhalese King of the 5th Century A.D. This study wascarried out to determine the cranial index of purana inhabitants of Thalkote,Diyakepilla, Nagalawewa and Pidurangala purana villages at the foot of Sigiriya. Onehundred and six male and 206 female purana inhabitants belonging to purana pedigreewith apparently healthy and without any craniofacial deformity, were recruited for thisstudy. The individual selection was based on verbal pedigree analysis and pedigree wastraced back to at least three generations. The maximum cranial length and breadth wastaken according to the standard anthropometry procedure described in Harrison et al in1990 by using spreading caliper. The horizontal cephalic index of each individual wascalculated by using measured maximum cranial length and maximum cranial breadth ofeach individual. The calculated mean horizontal cephalic index of male was 78.33 ±5.29 (mesocephalic) and female was 80.79 ± 5.86 (mesocephalic). The mean horizontalcephalic index for male and female was 80.04 ± 5.80 (mesocephalic). The meanhorizontal cephalic indices of male (78.33) and female (80.79) in this study was higherthan the mean value of Sri Lankan population reported by Illeperuma 2011, male as78.04 and female as 79.32. The obtained mean horizontal cephalic index in this studybeing 80.04 was higher than the mean value of Sri Lankan population (78.54) reportedby Illeperuma 2011 and Iranians : 75 (Farahani) and it is lower than the Indians : 80.42(del sol), Europeans in Mediterranean region : 81.19, Japanese : 87, (Nakahani 1986).These finding reinforce the racial diversity in the cephalic index between the puranainhabitants and modern Sri Lankans.

Key words: Purana inhabitants, Cephalic index, Human diversity


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