Home » Biological



Iulia Badescu
Supervisor: Dr. Daniel Sellen
Degree: PhD
Research: I am interested in primate infant care and development. For my PhD project, I am investigating the infant nutritional development of wild chimpanzees at Ngogo, Kibale National Park, Uganda. My MA research included evaluating the effects of kinship and genetic relatedness on natal attraction and infant handling in ursine colobus monkeys.

Laura Bolt
Supervisor: Shawn Lehman and Joyce Parga
Degree: PhD
Research: Laura studies the relationship between dominance and vocal communication in male ringtailed lemurs (Lemur catta) in Madagascar and on St. Catherines Island, USA.
Email: laura.bolt(at)UT

Ryan Burke (Evolutionary)
Supervisor(s): Dr. Shawn Lehman
Degree: M.Sc.
Research: Broadly, I am interested in the conservation of biological diversity and understanding the diverse impacts anthropogenically driven global changes have on ecosystems. Specifically, I have conducted research on determining dispersal capacity of organisms in order to determine relative impacts of climate change on species’ ranges, and am currently working how forest fragmentation impacts the distribution and body traits of mouse lemurs in Madagascar. I incorporate rigorous field-based data collection with spatial ecological techniques, and intend to use genetic techniques for future proposed work.
Email: ryan.burke(at)mail.utoronto.ca

Joel Cahn (Physical/Forensic)
Supervisor: Dr. Tracy Rogers
Degree: PhD
Research: My research involves assessing the representativeness of skeletal collections as modern populations and the feasibility of using antemortem fractures as a means of positive identification of unidentified remains.
Email: joel.cahn(at)UT

Gillian Cook
Supervisor(s): Esteban Parra
Degree: MSc
Research: Human evolutionary genetics, human variation
Contact: g(dot)cook(at)mail(dot)utoronto(dot)ca

L. Elizabeth Doyle
Supervisor: Susan Pfeiffer
Degree: PhD
Research: I am studying the ecology of chronic joint disease in the small-bodied Holocene foragers of coastal South Africa.
Email: bess.doyle(at)UT

Laura C. Eastham (Paleoanthropology/Paleoecology)
Supervisor: Dr. David Begun
Degree: PhD
Research: My doctoral research examines the impact of Late Miocene climatic change on the evolution and dispersal of early Eurasian hominids. This research concentrates on examining short-term ecological variability, through the high-resolution analysis of stable carbon and oxygen isotopes, as well as trace elements in fossil mammalian dental enamel.
Email: laura.eastham(at)UT

Emily Holland
Supervisor: Tracy Rogers
Degree: PhD
Research: Generally I am interested in juvenile osteology and skeletal biology, growth and development, bioarchaeology and health and nutrition. Specifically for my doctoral work I am researching health and nutrition in children and adults from a documented skeletal collection in order to better understand childhood health and issues of survivability.
Email: emily.holland(at)UT

Andrew C. Holmes (Evolutionary)
Supervisor(s): David BegunDegree: MSc
Research: Hominoid evolution, Eurasian Miocene apes, postcranial anatomy, Rudapithecus hungaricus
Email: andrew.holmes(at)mail.utoronto.ca

Stephanie Kozakowski (Paleoanthropology)
Supervisor: Dr. David Begun
Degree: PhD
Research: Hominoid cranial growth and development; Hylobatids; Hominoid fossil record; 3D Geometric Morphometrics; Virtual reconstruction of fossil material.
Email: stephanie.kozakowski(at)UT

Amber MacKenzie (Paleoanthropology)
Supervisor: David Begun
Degree: PhD
Research: I am interested in the functional morphology of Miocene hominoids, more specifically morphology related to primate locomotor behaviour. Currently interested in the mechanisms of tail loss (and reduction) among primates, as well as other arboreal mammals.
Email: amber.mackenzie(at)UT

Catherine Merritt
Supervisor: Susan Pfeiffer
Degree: PhD
Research: My doctoral research will assess the influence of body size on adult age estimation techniques. My primary research question will address how weight-bearing joints such as those on the pelvis, and non-weight bearing joints such as rib ends, are affected differently in skeletal aging.
Email: catherine.merritt(at)UT

Mary Kathleen Pitirri
Supervisor: David Begun
Degree: PhD
Research: Functional analysis of living and fossil primate masticatory morphology.
Email: kathy.pitirri(at)UT

Abigail Ross
Supervisor: Dr. Shawn Lehman
Degree: PhD
Research: My research examines the influence of habitat edges on maternal care and infant development in Propithecus coquereli, an endangered indriid, in NW Madagascar.
Email: abigail.ross(at)UT
Webpage: http://www.abigailchattaross.com

Sheryl Spigelski
Supervisor: Dr. Tracy Rogers
Degree: PhD
Research: I will be exploring the potential for understanding the relationship between the jobs we choose, and our overall health and vulnerability to disease. I will be using the Lisbon Skeletal Collection, currently housed at the Bocage Museum in Lisbon. My research would specifically compare occupations that are considered to be “white collar,” i.e. clerks, civil servants, librarians, etc., to “blue collar” jobs, i.e. cooper, maid, railway worker, and so forth. The research will systematically observe both gross anatomical and radiographic evidence of bone loss, nutritional deficiencies, skeletal disease involvement and incidences of trauma.
Email: : sheryl.spigelski(at)UT

Travis Steffens
Supervisor: Dr. Shawn Lehman
Degree: PhD
Research: I am interested in how primates respond to natural and anthropogenic habitat disturbance. I am also interested in conservation ecology of primates.
Email: travis.steffens(at)UT
Webpage: http://www.tssteffens.com; http://www.lambasforlemurs.com

* UT = mail.utoronto.ca. All emails altered this way for spambot protection.*

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