TestDimorph: An R package for analysis of interpopulation sexual dimorphism differences using summary statistics

Bassam A. Abulnoor, Mennatt Allah Hassan Attia, Iain R. Konigsberg, Lyle W. Konigsberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: The degree of sexual dimorphism in certain traits between males and females differ from one sample to another. Although trait differences by sex are often reported in bioanthropological research, few studies test for statistical significance or make raw data available. TestDimorph is the first R package dedicated to testing and comparing the degree of sexual dimorphism among different samples by leveraging summary statistics. Materials and Methods: We provide two approaches of analysis of inter-sample differences in degree of sexual dimorphism: univariate and multivariate for two or more samples. The methods follow upon publications primarily from the AJBA. Within-sex size variability between samples is compared using one-way ANOVA followed by control for multiple pairwise comparisons. In addition, we compute the overlapping area between the density functions of two normal distributions from the mixture intersection index or the non-overlapping area using the dissimilarity index as well as Hedges' g with inferential support using the 95% confidence interval. Finally, we use a multivariate analysis of differences in patterning of sexual dimorphism between samples. Results: We demonstrate various results from applying TestDimorph functions to data supplied with the package. Discussion: The package has many features including functionality for working with summary statistics, simulating data from summary statistics, and the extraction of summary statistics from raw data, so that the entire analysis can be performed through the package.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)487-498
Number of pages12
JournalAmerican Journal of Biological Anthropology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 2023


  • R language
  • Relethford and Hodges and Greene's t-test
  • quantitative traits
  • sexual dimorphism
  • unbalanced ANOVA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Genetics
  • Epidemiology
  • Anatomy
  • Archaeology
  • Palaeontology


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