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Use of scalation landmarks in geometric morphometrics of squamate reptiles: a comment on homology

Geometric morphometrics (GM) is a powerful analytical approach for evaluating phenotypic variation relevant to taxonomy and systematics, and as with any statistical methodology, requires adherence to fundamental assumptions for inferences to be strictly valid. An important consideration for GM is how landmark configurations, which represent sets of anatomical loci for evaluating shape variation through Cartesian coordinates, relate to underlying homology (Zelditch et al. 1995; Polly 2008). Perhaps more so than with traditional morphometrics, anatomical homology is a crucial assumption for GM because of the mathematical and biological interpretations associated with shape change depicted by deformation grids, such as the thin plate spline (Klingenberg 2008; Zelditch et al. 2012). GM approaches are often used to analyze shapes or outlines of structures, which are not necessarily related to common ancestry, and in this respect GM approaches that use linear semi-landmarks and related methods are particularly amenable to evaluating primary homology, or raw similarity between structures (De Pinna 1991; Palci & Lee 2019). This relaxed interpretation of homology that focuses more on recognizable and repeatable landmarks is defensible so long as authors are clear regarding the purpose of the analyses and in defining their landmark configurations (Palci & Lee 2019). Secondary homology, or more » similarity due to common ancestry, can also be represented with GM methods and is often assumed to be reflected in fixed Type 1 (juxtaposition of tissues) or Type 2 (self-evident geometry) landmarks (Bookstein 1991). « less
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  1. Abstract The field of comparative morphology has entered a new phase with the rapid generation of high-resolution three-dimensional (3D) data. With freely available 3D data of thousands of species, methods for quantifying morphology that harness this rich phenotypic information are quickly emerging. Among these techniques, high-density geometric morphometric approaches provide a powerful and versatile framework to robustly characterize shape and phenotypic integration, the covariances among morphological traits. These methods are particularly useful for analyses of complex structures and across disparate taxa, which may share few landmarks of unambiguous homology. However, high-density geometric morphometrics also brings challenges, for example, with statistical, but not biological, covariances imposed by placement and sliding of semilandmarks and registration methods such as Procrustes superimposition. Here, we present simulations and case studies of high-density datasets for squamates, birds, and caecilians that exemplify the promise and challenges of high-dimensional analyses of phenotypic integration and modularity. We assess: (1) the relative merits of “big” high-density geometric morphometrics data over traditional shape data; (2) the impact of Procrustes superimposition on analyses of integration and modularity; and (3) differences in patterns of integration between analyses using high-density geometric morphometrics and those using discrete landmarks. We demonstrate that for many skull regions,more »20–30 landmarks and/or semilandmarks are needed to accurately characterize their shape variation, and landmark-only analyses do a particularly poor job of capturing shape variation in vault and rostrum bones. Procrustes superimposition can mask modularity, especially when landmarks covary in parallel directions, but this effect decreases with more biologically complex covariance patterns. The directional effect of landmark variation on the position of the centroid affects recovery of covariance patterns more than landmark number does. Landmark-only and landmark-plus-sliding-semilandmark analyses of integration are generally congruent in overall pattern of integration, but landmark-only analyses tend to show higher integration between adjacent bones, especially when landmarks placed on the sutures between bones introduces a boundary bias. Allometry may be a stronger influence on patterns of integration in landmark-only analyses, which show stronger integration prior to removal of allometric effects compared to analyses including semilandmarks. High-density geometric morphometrics has its challenges and drawbacks, but our analyses of simulated and empirical datasets demonstrate that these potential issues are unlikely to obscure genuine biological signal. Rather, high-density geometric morphometric data exceed traditional landmark-based methods in characterization of morphology and allow more nuanced comparisons across disparate taxa. Combined with the rapid increases in 3D data availability, high-density morphometric approaches have immense potential to propel a new class of studies of comparative morphology and phenotypic integration.« less
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  3. Resonant tunneling diodes (RTDs) have come full-circle in the past 10 years after their demonstration in the early 1990s as the fastest room-temperature semiconductor oscillator, displaying experimental results up to 712 GHz and fmax values exceeding 1.0 THz [1]. Now the RTD is once again the preeminent electronic oscillator above 1.0 THz and is being implemented as a coherent source [2] and a self-oscillating mixer [3], amongst other applications. This paper concerns RTD electroluminescence – an effect that has been studied very little in the past 30+ years of RTD development, and not at room temperature. We present experiments and modeling of an n-type In0.53Ga0.47As/AlAs double-barrier RTD operating as a cross-gap light emitter at ~300K. The MBE-growth stack is shown in Fig. 1(a). A 15-μm-diam-mesa device was defined by standard planar processing including a top annular ohmic contact with a 5-μm-diam pinhole in the center to couple out enough of the internal emission for accurate free-space power measurements [4]. The emission spectra have the behavior displayed in Fig. 1(b), parameterized by bias voltage (VB). The long wavelength emission edge is at  = 1684 nm - close to the In0.53Ga0.47As bandgap energy of Ug ≈ 0.75 eV at 300 K.more »The spectral peaks for VB = 2.8 and 3.0 V both occur around  = 1550 nm (h = 0.75 eV), so blue-shifted relative to the peak of the “ideal”, bulk InGaAs emission spectrum shown in Fig. 1(b) [5]. These results are consistent with the model displayed in Fig. 1(c), whereby the broad emission peak is attributed to the radiative recombination between electrons accumulated on the emitter side, and holes generated on the emitter side by interband tunneling with current density Jinter. The blue-shifted main peak is attributed to the quantum-size effect on the emitter side, which creates a radiative recombination rate RN,2 comparable to the band-edge cross-gap rate RN,1. Further support for this model is provided by the shorter wavelength and weaker emission peak shown in Fig. 1(b) around = 1148 nm. Our quantum mechanical calculations attribute this to radiative recombination RR,3 in the RTD quantum well between the electron ground-state level E1,e, and the hole level E1,h. To further test the model and estimate quantum efficiencies, we conducted optical power measurements using a large-area Ge photodiode located ≈3 mm away from the RTD pinhole, and having spectral response between 800 and 1800 nm with a peak responsivity of ≈0.85 A/W at  =1550 nm. Simultaneous I-V and L-V plots were obtained and are plotted in Fig. 2(a) with positive bias on the top contact (emitter on the bottom). 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From the implicit definition of IQE in terms of i and r given above, and the fact that the recombination efficiency in In0.53Ga0.47As is likely limited by Auger scattering, this result for IQE suggests that i might be significantly high. To estimate i, we have used the experimental total current of Fig. 2(a), the Kane two-band model of interband tunneling [7] computed in conjunction with a solution to Poisson’s equation across the entire structure, and a rate-equation model of Auger recombination on the emitter side [6] assuming a free-electron density of 2×1018 cm3. We focus on the high-bias regime above VB = 2.5 V of Fig. 2(a) where most of the interband tunneling should occur in the depletion region on the collector side [Jinter,2 in Fig. 1(c)]. And because of the high-quality of the InGaAs/AlAs heterostructure (very few traps or deep levels), most of the holes should reach the emitter side by some combination of drift, diffusion, and tunneling through the valence-band double barriers (Type-I offset) between InGaAs and AlAs. The computed interband current density Jinter is shown in Fig. 3(a) along with the total current density Jtot. At the maximum Jinter (at VB=3.0 V) of 7.4×102 A/cm2, we get i = Jinter/Jtot = 0.18, which is surprisingly high considering there is no p-type doping in the device. When combined with the Auger-limited r of 0.41 and c ≈ 3.4×10-4, we find a model value of IQE = 7.4% in good agreement with experiment. This leads to the model values for EQE plotted in Fig. 2(b) - also in good agreement with experiment. Finally, we address the high Jinter and consider a possible universal nature of the light-emission mechanism. Fig. 3(b) shows the tunneling probability T according to the Kane two-band model in the three materials, In0.53Ga0.47As, GaAs, and GaN, following our observation of a similar electroluminescence mechanism in GaN/AlN RTDs (due to strong polarization field of wurtzite structures) [8]. The expression is Tinter = (2/9)∙exp[(-2 ∙Ug 2 ∙me)/(2h∙P∙E)], where Ug is the bandgap energy, P is the valence-to-conduction-band momentum matrix element, and E is the electric field. Values for the highest calculated internal E fields for the InGaAs and GaN are also shown, indicating that Tinter in those structures approaches values of ~10-5. As shown, a GaAs RTD would require an internal field of ~6×105 V/cm, which is rarely realized in standard GaAs RTDs, perhaps explaining why there have been few if any reports of room-temperature electroluminescence in the GaAs devices. [1] E.R. Brown,et al., Appl. Phys. Lett., vol. 58, 2291, 1991. [5] S. Sze, Physics of Semiconductor Devices, 2nd Ed. 12.2.1 (Wiley, 1981). [2] M. Feiginov et al., Appl. Phys. Lett., 99, 233506, 2011. [6] L. Coldren, Diode Lasers and Photonic Integrated Circuits, (Wiley, 1995). [3] Y. Nishida et al., Nature Sci. Reports, 9, 18125, 2019. [7] E.O. Kane, J. of Appl. Phy 32, 83 (1961). [4] P. Fakhimi, et al., 2019 DRC Conference Digest. [8] T. Growden, et al., Nature Light: Science & Applications 7, 17150 (2018). [5] S. Sze, Physics of Semiconductor Devices, 2nd Ed. 12.2.1 (Wiley, 1981). [6] L. Coldren, Diode Lasers and Photonic Integrated Circuits, (Wiley, 1995). [7] E.O. Kane, J. of Appl. Phy 32, 83 (1961). [8] T. Growden, et al., Nature Light: Science & Applications 7, 17150 (2018).« less
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