New paper: Intervertebral motion in birds

Simulating intervertbral motion (Credit: M. Furet)

Simulating motion between two vertebrae is particularly challenging because the bones articulate at more than one surface. In our paper, we propose a computational method to estimate the possible intervertebral range of motion in birds. First, the articular surfaces were extracted from the CT scans and approximated with polynomial surfaces. Next, a model of contact between the surfaces was derived. A numerical solution of the contact equations is computed which allows for computing the motion between the vertebrae. Our engineer collaborators from the Laboratoire des Sciences du Numérique de Nantes did an impressive work to use our anatomical results on the mobility of the neck in the woodpecker for computational modeling.


Abourachid A, Cornette R and Böhmer C (2019) The neck of the birds, from form to function. Abstracts book: International Congress of Vertebrate Morphology (ICVM), Prague (invited symposium contribution)

Böhmer C, Fasquelle B, Furet M, Wenger P, Abourachid A (2019). Combining precision and power to maximize performance: a case study of the woodpecker’s neck. Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering: Supplement for the International French Society of Biomechanics 2019 Conference, Poitiers, France. DOI: 10.1080/10255842.2019.1668135.

Furet M, Abourachid A, Böhmer C, Chummun V, Chevallerau C, Cornette R, De La Bernardie X and Wenger P (2021) Estimating motion between avian vertebrae by contact modeling of joint surfaces. Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering. DOI: 10.1080/10255842.2021.1934676

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