Science-based archaeology: specifically palaeoenvironmental reconstruction focusing on environmental change and its effects on hominid physical and cultural evolution; palaeoenvironmental and palaeoecological reconstructions of archaeological sites based on sedimentology and stable isotopic indicators.
Palaeoenvironmental change and hominid mobility in the Thar Desert and Andhra Pradesh, India
Oldowan hominid behavior and ecology at Kanjera South, Kenya
Palaeoenvironments, landscape evolution and hominid land use patterns at Olorgesailie, Kenya
Pliocene environments and hominid land use at Laetoli, Tanzania
A long-term record of environmental change in Bubing Basin, south China
Chinese Human Evoutional Research Project
Chronological and environment setting for the Aterian Industry, eastern Morocco
Research Grants Awarded
2007 Taxon-free methods for palaeontological methods for reconstructing environmental change (Co-investigator) Leverhulme Trust application
2007 The Toba super-eruption and its impact on human populations and ecosystems (Co-investigator) Leverhulme Trust award
Summary justice or the King’s will? The first case of formal facial mutilation from Anglo-Saxon England
A guide for an anatomically sensitive dentine microsampling and age-alignment approach for human teeth isotopic sequences.
Czermak, A, Fernández-Crespo, T, Ditchfield, PW, Lee-Thorp, JA
American journal of physical anthropology
OBJECTIVES:Stable isotope analysis of sequential dentine samples is a potentially powerful method to reveal insights into early life-histories of individuals in the past. Dentine incremental growth structures are complex, however, and current approaches that apply horizontal sectioning of demineralized tooth halves or quarters risk combining multiple growth layers and may include unwanted cementum or secondary dentine. They also require destruction of large parts of a tooth. Here, we present a less destructive and relatively straightforward protocol that reduces damage, increases temporal resolution, and improves the accuracy of age-alignment between individuals. MATERIAL AND METHODS:We outline a protocol that includes the sampling of small (1 mm diameter) cylindrical plug transects from a thin section, along with an age-alignment scheme predicated on average growth rates for dentine areas. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION:The proposed protocol is readily applicable and more anatomically sensitive than horizontal slicing. Micro-samples are smaller (in both length and depth), hence minimizing temporal overlap and avoid directions that may contravene growth pattern. They completely avoid areas where secondary and tertiary dentine or cementum can be deposited. Age-alignment is improved by using growth ratios of anatomical tooth zones. CONCLUSION:This method minimizes destruction, enables finer temporal resolution and facilitates data comparison. It can be readily combined with fluorescence imaging-based or other pre-screening methods of dentine collagen preservation.
Primate paleoenvironments of the Homa Peninsula, southwestern Kenya