Systematic Study of Starch Granules
Taxonomic identification of starch granules is critical to understanding human diets from archaeological contexts, especially when determining the role of geophytes (underground tubers, bulbs, rhizomes and roots). But achieving high levels of confidence has been problematic. We use morphometric and morphological techniques to develop a statistical approach for identifying starch granules (Louderback et al. 2015, Louderback et al. 2016, Herzog et al. 2018). Those identifications have led to publications that discussed the role of geophytes in ancient diets (Louderback and Pavlik 2017, Herzog et al. 2017).
The figure above shows Solanum jamesii starch granules with diagnostic characteristics and how they are measured.