Evolutionary Function of Human Hair

Evolutionary Function of Human Hair

The evolution of diversity in human hair form and color, with special emphasis on the evolution of the form and function of human scalp hair. This group of studies is being pursued by former postdoctoral scholar Tina Lasisi and former member Sandra Koch, along with Nina Jablonski. Our primary collaborators are Mark Shriver (Penn State) and Ophelia Dadzie (University College London).

Jablonski is also engaged in research on the evolution of hair more generally on the human body, including why we have hair in some places and not in others.

Compilation of various human hair colors and textures.

Relevant Publications:

Lasisi, T., Zaidi, A. A., Webster, T. H., Stephens, N. B., Routch, K., Jablonski, N. G., & Shriver, M. D. (2021). High-throughput phenotyping methods for quantifying hair fiber morphology. Scientific Reports, 11(1), 11535. doi:10.1038/s41598-021-90409-x

Koch, S. L., Liebowitz, C., Shriver, M. D., & Jablonski, N. G. (2020). Microscopical discrimination of human head hairs sharing a mitochondrial haplogroup. Journal of Forensic Sciences, 66(1), 56-71. doi:10.1111/1556-4029.14560

Koch, S. L., Tridico, S. R., Bernard, B. A., Shriver, M. D., & Jablonski, N. G. (2020). The biology of human hair: A multidisciplinary review. American Journal of Human Biology, 32(2), e23316. doi:10.1002/ajhb.23316

Koch, S. L., Shriver, M. D., & Jablonski, N. G. (2019). Variation in human hair ultrastructure among three biogeographic populations. Journal of Structural Biology, 205(1), 60-66. doi:10.1016/j.jsb.2018.11.008

Lasisi, T., Ito, S., Wakamatsu, K., Shriver, M. D., & Jablonski, N. G. (2018). More than meets the eye: What chemical analyses can reveal about hair color. Poster presented at the 87th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 165(S66), 153. doi/10.1002/ajpa.23489

Dadzie, O. E., Lasisi, T., & Jablonski, N. G. (2017). The anthropology of human scalp hair. In N. A. Vashi & H. I. Maibach (Eds.), Dermatoanthropology of Ethnic Skin and Hair (pp. 315-330). Cham: Springer International Publishing. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-53961-4_18

Lasisi, T., Ito, S., Wakamatsu, K., & Shaw, C. N. (2016). Quantifying variation in human scalp hair fiber shape and pigmentation. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 160(2), 341-352. doi:10.1002/ajpa.22971

Jablonski, N. G., & Chaplin, G. (2014). The evolution of skin pigmentation and hair texture in people of African ancestry. Dermatologic Clinics, 32(2), 113-121. doi:10.1016/j.det.2013.11.003

Deedrick, D. W., & Koch, S. L. (2004). Microscopy of hair part I: A practical guide and manual for human hairs. Forensic Science Communications, 6(1).