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Stefanie Stelzer

Stefanie Stelzer

I am a PhD student in the IMPRS program at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology at the Department of Human Evolution.

My primary research focuses on early human evolution. I am interested in craniodental morphology as it provides information about hominin systematics and diet, two important subjects in palaeoanthropology. Particularly, I am interested in the functional morphology of teeth and the biomechanics of mastication.

My previous research focused on interpreting dental macrowear patterns in early hominins in relation to diet. Attritional wear facets and abrasion zones, such as tip-crushing areas develop during the processing of food and differences in the size and spatial position of enamel facets can be correlated with the consumption of different food types and other behavioural factors.

My doctoral research seeks to understand how the upper and lower jaws of hominins are integrated morphologically and functionally. Given the evidence for dietary variability in fossil hominins it is predicted that species-specific patterns of integration and constraints in the jaws will exist. Characterizations of these patterns can be used to test hypotheses about the composition and phylogenetic relationships among different hominin species.

I also enjoy fieldwork and have participated in field projects in France, Austria and Ethiopia.

Department of Human Evolution
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
Deutscher Platz 6
D-04103 Leipzig

phone: 0049 (0) 341 3550 767
fax: 0049 (0) 341 3550 399