Nathaniel J. Dominy

Academic Appointments

Charles Hansen Professor of Anthropology
Adjunct Professor of Biological Sciences
Professor, Ecology, Evolution, Ecosystems and Society (EEES) Graduate Program

I am an anthropologist and evolutionary biologist. I study the behavior, ecology, and functional morphology of humans and nonhuman primates. My research philosophy is to integrate tropical fieldwork with mechanical, molecular, and isotopic analyses in order to better understand how and why adaptive shifts occurred during primate evolution.

405A Silsby
HB 6047
Biological Sciences
B.A. Johns Hopkins University, 1998
Ph.D. University of Hong Kong, 2001

Selected Publications


Ramsier MA, Cunningham AJ, Patiño MR, Glander KE, Dominy NJ (2019). Audiograms of howling monkeys: are extreme loud calls the result of runaway selection? bioRxiv 539023 (doi: 10.1101/539023)

Dominy NJ, Symes LB (2019). Close encounters of the bird kind. Anthropology News 60(3):3-6. (doi: 10.1111/AN.1166)

Gochman SR, Morano Lord M, Goyal N, Chow K, Cooper BK, Gray LK, Guo SX, Hill KA, Liao SK, Peng S, Seong HJ, Wang A, Yoon EK, Zhang S, Lobel E, Tregubov T, Dominy NJ (2019) Tarsier Goggles: a virtual reality tool for experiencing the optics of a dark-adapted primate visual system. Evolution: Education and Outreach 12:9 (doi: 10.1186/s12052-019-0101-6)

Kraft TS, Venkataraman VV, Tacey I, Dominy NJ, Endicott KM (2019). Foraging performance, prosociality, and kin presence do not predict lifetime reproductive success in Batek hunter-gatherers. Human Nature 30:71-91. (doi: 10.1007/s12110-018-9334-2)

Duytschaever G, Janiak MC, Ong PS, Wells K, Dominy NJ, Melin AD (2019). Opsin genes of select treeshrews resolve ancestral character states within Scandentia. Royal Society Open Science 6:182037 (doi: 10.1098/rsos.182037)

Amato KR, Sanders JG, Song SJ, Nute M, Metcalf JL, Thompson LR, Morton JT, Amir A, McKenzie VJ, Humphrey G, Gogul G, Gaffney J, Baden AL, Britton GAO, Cuozzo FP, Di Fiore A, Dominy NJ, Goldberg TL, Gomez A, Kowalewski MM, Lewis RJ, Link A, Sauther ML, Tecot S, White BA, Nelson KE, Stumpf RM, Knight R, Leigh SR (2019). Evolutionary trends in host physiology outweigh dietary niche in structuring primate gut microbiomes. The ISME Journal 13:576-587. (doi: 10.1038/s41396-018-0175-0)

Dominy NJ, Winters S, Pease DE, Higham JP (2018). Dr Seuss and the real Lorax. Nature Ecology and Evolution 2:1196-1198. (doi: 10.1038/s41559-018-0628-x)

Dominy NJ, Mills ST, Yakacki CM, Roscoe PB, Carpenter RD (2018). New Guinea bone daggers were engineered to preserve social prestige. Royal Society Open Science 5:172067. (doi: 10.1098/rsos.172067).

Higham JP, Dominy NJ (2018). The promise of primatology fulfilled? American Journal of Physical Anthropology 166:783-790. (doi: 10.1002/ajpa.23620)

Tan AWY, Dominy NJ (2018). Validation of a noninvasive hair trapping method for extractive-foraging primates. Folia Primatologica 89:415-422. (doi: 10.1159/000492328)

Dominy NJ, Yeakel JD (2017). Frankenstein and the horrors of competitive exclusion. BioScience 67:107-110. (doi: 10.1093/biosci/biw133)

Ramsier MA, Vinyard CJ, Dominy NJ (2017). Auditory sensitivity of the tufted capuchin (Sapajus apella), a test of allometric predictions. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 141:4822-4831. (doi:

Venkataraman VV, Kraft TS, Dominy NJ, Endicott KM (2017). Hunter-gatherer residential mobility and the marginal value of rainforest patches. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 114:3097-3102. (doi: 10.1073/pnas.1617542114)

Moritz GL, Ong PS, Perry GH, Dominy NJ (2017). Functional preservation and variation in the cone opsin genes of nocturnal tarsiers. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 372:20160075. (doi: 10.1098/rstb.2016.0075)    

Gochman SR, Brown MB, Dominy NJ (2016). Alcohol discrimination and preferences in two species of nectar-feeding primate. Royal Society Open Science 3:160217. (doi: 10.1098/rsos.160217)

Dominy NJ, Yeakel JD, Bhat U, Ramsden L, Wrangham RW, Lucas PW (2016). How chimpanzees integrate sensory information to select figs. Interface Focus 6:20160001. (doi: 10.1098/rsfs.2016.0001)

Mason VC, Li G, Minx P, Schmitz J, Churakov G, Doronina L, Melin AD, Dominy NJ, Lim NT-L, Springer MS, Wilson RK, Warren WC, Helgen KM, Murphy WJ (2016). Genomic analysis reveals hidden biodiversity within colugos, the sister group to primates. Science Advances 2:e1600633. (doi: 10.1126/sciadv.1600633)

Melin AD, Wells K, Moritz GL, Kistler L, Orkin JD, Timm RM, Bernard H, Lakim MB, Perry GH, Kawamura S, Dominy NJ (2016). Euarchontan opsin variation brings new focus to primate origins. Molecular Biology and Evolution 33:1029-1041. (doi: 10.1093/molbev/msv346)

Butler EE, Dominy NJ (2016). Architecture and functional ecology of the human gastrocnemius muscle-tendon unit. Journal of Anatomy 228:561-568. (doi: 10.1111/joa.12432)

Valenta K, Edwards M, Rafaliarison RR, Johnson SE, Holmes SM, Brown KA, Dominy NJ, Lehman SM, Parra EJ, Melin AD (2016). Visual ecology of true lemurs suggests a cathemeral origin for the primate cone opsin polymorphism. Functional Ecology 30:932-942. (doi: 10.1111/1365-2435.12575)

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