My primary areas of interest are the ontogeny of locomotion, trabecular bone remodeling, and the evolution and functional morphology of the hands and feet. I am interested in how forces incurred during locomotion influence the microarchitecture of trabecular bone. In particular, my research aims to 1) determine the magnitude and direction of forces that travel through bones during locomotion, 2) use advanced imaging techniques to identify evidence of ground reaction, muscle, and joint reaction forces as preserved in trabecular bone patterning, and 3) apply this method to the study of fossil hominins as an innovative way of reconstructing locomotor behavior in extinct species.
I have examined the development of hand and foot postures in digitigrade baboons, bipedal toddlers, and am currently investigating the ontogeny of heel strike and knuckle-walking in infant chimpanzees and gorillas.
RESEARCH: BIOMECHANICS TRABECULAR BONE