Research Laboratories

Researchers use ancient human remains to reconstruct historical events
  • Modern Humans
  • Human Evolution and Bio-History
  • Dental Research

Dan David Laboratory for the Search and Study of Modern Humans

Prof. Israel Hershkovitz

The laboratory focuses on three main topics:

  1. Searching for the origin of anatomically modern humans: The origin of anatomically modern Homo sapiens and the fate of the Neanderthals have been fundamental questions in human evolutionary studies for over a century. We are interested in answering fundamental questions in human paleontology such as: Where and when did modern humans first appear? and what were their routes of dispersal?
  2. Medicine from evolutionary perspectives: We are studying common pathologies in the modern population from an evolutionary perspective in the effort to understand their development and suggest a therapeutic solution. For example: the etiology and pathophysiology of the sacro-iliac joint ankylosing, mal-orientation of the sacrum and its association with spinal deformities (i.e., spondylolisthesis, scoliosis, etc), pathophysiology of spinal stenosis, revealing variation in lumbar spinal curves, and understanding the 3-D structure and shape of the annulus fibrosus of the intervertebral ring via MRI.
  3. Forensic anthropology: Developing methods for analyzing skeletal remains and reconstructing their cause of death. For example: the association between the pattern of fractures in the lower limb bones and the physical characteristic (size, velocity etc) of the impact.


Affiliated with the Faculty of Medicine and the Steinhardt Museum of Natural History

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