ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0579.v1
Subject: Biology, Other Keywords: Graph Theory; Computational Geometry; Spatial Statistics; Image analysis; Tessellations; Voronoi Polygons; Delaunay Triangulations; Minimal Spanning Trees; Pitteway Violations
Online: 31 August 2021 (15:58:36 CEST)
Every biological image contains quantitative data that can be used to test hypotheses about how patterns were formed, what entities are associated with one another, and whether standard mathematical methods inform our understanding of biological phenomena. In particular, spatial point distributions and polygonal tessellations are particularly amendable to analysis with a variety of graph theoretic, computational geometric, and spatial statistical tools such as: Voronoi Polygons; Delaunay Triangulations; Perpendicular Bisectors; Circumcenters; Convex Hulls; Minimal Spanning Trees; Ulam Trees; Pitteway Violations; Circularity; Clark-Evans spatial statistics; Variance to Mean Ratios; Gabriel Graphs; and, Minimal Spanning Trees. Furthermore, biologists have developed a number of empirically related correlations for polygonal tessellations such as: Lewis’s Law (the number of edges of convex polygons are positively correlated with the areas of these polygons): Desch’s Law (the number of edges of convex polygons are positively correlated with the perimeters of these polygons); and Errara’s Law (daughter cell areas should be roughly half that of their parent cells’ areas). We introduce a new Pitteway Law that the number of sides of the convex polygons in a Voronoi tessellation of biological epithelia is proportional to the minimal interior angle of the convex polygons as angles less than 90 degrees result in Pitteway violations of the Delaunay dual of the Voronoi tessellation.