Evolutionary Morphology

RESEARCH

Galago calcaneus
Adaptations to Locomotion

We aim to identify postcranial adaptations to locomotion in primates and other mammals, to aid reconstructions of locomotor behavior in fossil species.

Experimental Biomechanics

To understand how pelvic form is related to function, we test theoretical models of pelvic mechanics using an experimental biomechanics approach.

Integration & Modularity

We seek to identify how patterns of morphological integration and modularity in the primate pelvis have facilitated evolutionary change.

 

PEOPLE

Kristi L. Lewton, Ph.D.

Principal Investigator

Kristi L. Lewton is a biological anthropologist and evolutionary anatomist, and is an Associate Professor at the Keck School of MedicineDepartment of Integrative Anatomical Sciences at the University of Southern California.

Kristi received her B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Washington in 2002, her M.A. in Anthropology from Arizona State University in 2004, and her Ph.D. in Anthropology from ASU in 2010. From 2010-2013 she held a Postdoctoral Preceptorship at Harvard University in the Department of Human Evolutionary Biology. From 2014-2015 Kristi was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology at Boston University School of Medicine where she developed the Physician Assistant Gross Anatomy Course and served as its course director. Kristi joined USC in 2015, where she holds a primary appointment in Keck School of Medicine, adjunct professor positions in Dornsife College and the Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy, and a Research Associate in Mammalogy position at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.

In addition to lab-based research on postcranial morphology, Kristi has worked in archaeological excavation in Arizona, conducted fieldwork in Ethiopia and South Africa, and has collected data at museums around the world, including in the UK, France, Madagascar, and South Africa, as well as in Chicago, New York, Washington DC, Tempe, AZ, Cambridge, MA, Cleveland, and Los Angeles.

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Emily-Elizabeth Cardenas

Undergraduate, Biochemistry B.S. and Minor in Health Care Studies (2022), USC

Emily-Elizabeth started working in the lab in January 2020 and has experience  segmenting lower limb bones from micro-CT scans of galagid species.

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Kaitlin Hsu

Undergraduate, Human Biology B.S. (2023), USC

Kaitlin started working in the lab in September 2021. She is processing micro-CT scans of tibiae of mammalian hoppers and leapers.

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Chloe Knitt

Undergraduate, Biology B.S. (2024), USC

Chloe started working in the lab in September 2021. She is processing micro-CT scans of femora of mammalian hoppers and leapers.

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Kyle Schtul

Graduate student, Integrative Anatomical Sciences M.S. (2022), USC

Kyle started working in the lab in September 2021. She is processing micro-CT scans of tarsals of primate leapers.

 

CONTACT & LINKS

Dr. Kristi L. Lewton, PhD

Keck School of Medicine of USC

Department of Integrative Anatomical Sciences

1333 San Pablo St, Mail Stop 9112

Los Angeles, CA 90033

Office (323) 442-1629

email: kristilewton at gmail dot com