Behind the Science

08.10.17

Questions and Answers About Alesi

Behind the Science, In the News, Journal Article
Research findings on 'Alesi,' a newly discovered  13 million-year-old fossil ape species, were published this week in the journal Nature and the story has been widely carried in the press. The research team behind the Nyanzapithecus alesi discovery has collaborated to put together this list of questions and answers.
08.14.15

The Rise of Culture and the Fall of Testosterone

Behind the Science, Education
In a paper published in the journal Current Anthropology, a team of researchers funded by The Leakey Foundation explore the biological basis of the technology boom and expansion of culture that happened 50,000 years ago. DURHAM, N.C. — Modern humans appear in the fossil record about 200,000 years ago, but it was only about 50,000 years ago that making art and advanced tools became widespread. A newmore »
04.20.15

Behind the Science: C3 or C4, Which One Are You?

Behind the Science, Tutorial
by H. Gregory This is the first in a series of articles written for those of you who might appreciate a little extra background information on the science behind some of the projects we share with you. Enjoy! In this year’s Spring/Summer AnthroQuest we describe how Getty Grant recipient Thure Cerling is using stable isotope analysis of tooth enamel from fossil primates in order to determine the percentages… more »
09.03.14

Extracting Ancient Dental DNA: Just Like Pulling Teeth

Behind the Science, Education, Guest Post
by Dr. Anne Stone,  Arizona State University Photo: David Bygott BY-NC-SA 2.0 How hard can it be to extract DNA from the teeth of chimpanzees that died only 30 or 40 years ago? These were my initial thoughts when presented with the opportunity to examine the DNA of the most famous chimpanzees in the world. These individuals, studied by Dr. Jane Goodall at Gombe, included Flo, Madam Bee, Satan, Hugo, and Getty.more »
04.12.11

Studying Hormonal Stimuli in Mountain Gorillas Yields Many Clues

Behind the Science, Education, From the Field, Grantee Spotlight, Guest Post
By Sosthene Habumuremyi My study has gathered data on mating behavior, solicitations, and any displays/aggression from adult males towards the females. Sexual swellings, which are extremely small in gorillas, are also noted. The plan is to monitor at least 6 nulliparous (never having given birth to offspring) females and 10 cycling parous (given birth to offspring at least once) females for 2 cycles more »