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New and improved tomato analyzer
Date:5/4/2009

WOOSTER, OHTomatoes come in a variety of sizes and shapes, making them the perfect subject to test shape-analyzing software. The Tomato Analyzer is "rapidly becoming the standard for fruit morphological characterizations," according to a study led by Marin Talbot Brewer of The Ohio State University's Department of Horticulture and Crop Science. Details of the team's latest Tomato Analyzer research were published in a recent issue of the Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science.

Morphology studies the form and structure of organisms. Software such as the Tomato Analyzer aids in morphological research by providing accurate and objective measurements of fruit shape. The analysis is also more efficient for large numbers of subjects and can detect traits that are extremely difficult to quantify manually. The Tomato Analyzer uses mathematical descriptors to quantify various shape features based on the boundary of the fruit.

Morphometrics studies the quantitative analysis of the shape and size of a biological form using the position of and distance between landmarks. This method has been used to study variations, classifications, and evolutionary analyses, as well as genetic studies of animals and insects. Morphometric analysis is less biased and depends less on manual manipulation, but the results are abstract quantities. The Tomato Analyzer's results are more descriptive because they actually measure angles or include ratios that better explain the fruit shape. However, the Tomato Analyzer provides both methods in the same application, allowing the researcher to select the option that best suits the project's needs.

A main objective of the study was to investigate the quantitative trait loci (QTL), which are parts of the genetic code that control fruit shape. The QTL as determined by morphometric analysis and boundary analysis were then compared. A new set of measurements was added to the Tomato Analyzer softwar
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Contact: Michael W. Neff
mwneff@ashs.org
703-836-4606
American Society for Horticultural Science
Source:Eurekalert  

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