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josh snodgrass in siberia    

J. Josh Snodgrass, Ph.D.

Department of Anthropology

University of Oregon
1321 Kincaid Street
Eugene, OR  97403

Associate Vice Provost for
  Undergraduate Studies
Division of Undergraduate Studies
5256 University of Oregon
Eugene, OR  97403
Office: 372 Oregon Hall

E-mail: jjosh@uoregon.edu

Human Biology Research Lab
Center for Medical Education
  Research (Labs 104 & 205)

Sacred Heart Medical Center
University District Hospital
722 E. 11th Avenue

Eugene, OR  97401

Directions to the lab

Winter 2017 Office Hours
Wednesdays 3-4
Thursdays 11:30-12:30
& by appointment
(held in 372 Oregon Hall)

Links to Information on Publications, Research Interests, and Teaching
Research Interests
Snodgrass Human Biology Research Laboratory
Undergraduate Teaching and Mentoring
Shuar Health and Life History Project
Indigenous Siberian Health and Adaptation Project
WHO Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE)--UO Office
Bones and Behavior Project

Primary Academic Appointments at UO
Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Oregon
Associate Vice Provost for Undergraduate Studies, University of Oregon

Other Positions at UO

Richard A. Bray Faculty Fellow, University of Oregon (2014-2017)
Co-Director, Center for Global Health, University of Oregon (2016-)
Director, Office of Distinguished Scholarships, University of Oregon (2016-)
Director, Human Biology Research Laboratory, University of Oregon (since 2007)
Notable Current External Professional Position

Vice President, American Association of Physical Anthropologists (2016-2018)

Areas of Specialization
Human Biology; Human Nutrition & Energetics; Evolutionary Medicine; Global Health; Mental Health; Growth & Development; Aging; Biomarkers of Physiology and Health; Human Skeletal Biology


NIA Postdoctoral Fellow, Institute for Mind and Biology, The University of Chicago (2004-2005)
Ph.D., Anthropology, Northwestern University (2004)
M.A., Anthropology, University of Florida (1998)
B.A., Anthropology, UC Santa Cruz

Recent Awards
Outstanding Faculty Advising Award (Certificate of Merit Recipient), National Academic Advising
   Association, 2015 (coverage by Around the O)
University of Oregon Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award, 2014 (coverage by Around the O)
Human Biology Association's
Michael A. Little Early Career Award, 2013
Elected as
Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 2013
Scientist to Watch in August issue of The Scientist magazine, 2013 (see profile and UO coverage)
University of Oregon Williams Fellow for distinguished undergraduate teaching, 2012
University of Oregon Faculty Excellence Award in recognition of outstanding research and leadership, 2012
PeaceHealth/Sacred Heart Medical Foundation Clinical Research Recognition Award, 2011


Anth 175: Evolutionary Medicine (
Anth 199: Paging Dr. Darwin (Freshman Interest Group College Connections Course) (Syllabus)
Anth 270: Introduction to Biological Anthropology (Syllabus)
Anth 362: Human Biological Variation (
Anth 369: Human Growth & Development (
Anth 468/568: Evolutionary Theory (
Anth 487/587: Bioanthropology Methods (Syllabus)
Anth 610: Current Topics in Biological Anthropology (Syllabus)

(Read more about my courses and teaching philosophy)

Research Interests
My research focuses on human health and adaptation and sits at the intersection of human physiology, evolutionary biology, nutritional sciences, epidemiology, and the behavioral sciences.

My research focuses on five main topics:
Human adaptation to environmental stressors such as extreme cold
2) The influence of social and environmental change on health, especially cardiovascular disease and diabetes
3) Human nutrition/energetics and the evolution of the human diet
4) The role of chronic psychosocial stress in shaping health and disease
5) Global aging, health, and well-being
(Read more about my research interests)

Collaborative Field Research
I am part of several large collaborative research teams and am involved in field research projects in northeastern Siberia (Indigenous Siberian Health and Adaptation Project), the Amazon region of Ecuador (The Shuar Health and Life History Project), and several locations within Oregon.

the indigenous siberian health and adaptation

shuar project logo

Since 2005, I've also been involved with the World Health Organization's multi-country Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (SAGE), a longitudinal study of health and well-being in older adults that focuses on nationally representative samples in six countries (China, Ghana, India, Mexico, Russia, and South Africa). More info on our SAGE efforts can be found on the SAGE Eugene Office Homepage.

who     who sage

Human Biology Research Laboratory
I also direct a human biology research laboratory, an immunology/endocrinology biomarker lab, that focuses on the development and application of minimally invasive techniques (e.g., dried blood spots and saliva) for assessing health and physiology in population-based research.

cmer     cmer lab

Recent News/Press
Undergraduate student lab intern Tigest Mequanint makes an appearance in a video about graduate student Alex de Verteuil and the SCORE (Students of Color Opportunities for Research Enrichment) program; the video is currently on the University of Oregon Homepage. Here's the link to the video. (posted 1/15/17)

tigest mequanint score

Our collaborative research with Dave Raichlen and others on physical activity and cardiovascular health among the Hadza was recently published in the American Journal of Human Biology and profiled in The New York Times and NPR (posted 11/27/16)

The Fall 2016 issue of UO's CASCADE Magazine discusses my role in expanding research opportunities for undergraduates and launching the Center for Undergraduate Research and Engagement (CURE). (posted 9/30/16)

We recently received an NSF grant from the Biological Anthropology program (
"Building the Methodological Toolkit in Biological Anthropology: Dried Blood Spot Methods Development for Addressing Key Evolutionary and Biocultural Questions"; BCS-1638786) to develop and validate dried blood spot biomarkers for myeloperoxidase (pANCA), TPOAb, interleukin-10 (IL-10), carboxylated osteocalcin (cOC), tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase 5b (TRACP5b), and Klotho. The project group includes Geeta Eick, Maureen Devlin, Tara Cepon-Robins, Paul Kowal, and Larry Sugiyama. (posted 9/4/16)

I gave the keynote address to the Phi Beta Kappa initiates as part of the UO graduation ceremonies. The speech focused on the importance of a liberal arts and science education. (posted 6/13/16)

Three graduate students I work with finished their PhD's this past spring, all working with the Shuar Health and Life History Project:
  • Melissa Liebert ("Stress and culture change among indigenous Shuar from Amazonian Ecuador: Integrating evolutionary, developmental, and biocultural perspectives"); PhD, Department of Anthropology, University of Oregon
  • Sam Urlacher ("Growing up Shuar: Life history tradeoffs and energy allocation in the context of physical growth among an indigenous Amazonian population"); PhD, Department of Human Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University
  • Keaton Stagaman ("Investigating the role of immunity and other selective pressures on the assembly of the gut microbiota in zebrafish and humans"); PhD, Department of Biology, Institute of Ecology and Evolution, and Institute of Molecular Biology, University of Oregon (posted 6/11/16)
I gave a talk ("Health and aging among older adults in middle income countries: The WHO's Study on global AGEing and adult health [SAGE]", with Paul Kowal and Somnath Chatterji) at the NIH/NIA-sponsored Nathan Shock Center Summit on Personalized Geroscience, Seattle, WA. (posted 6/6/16)

Geeta Eick
and I are part of a collaborative research team at UO, led by psychologist Jeff Measelle (and including Dare Baldwin and Geraldine Richmond), that recently received a UO Incubating Interdisciplinary Initiatives (I3) award for our project, "Neuroimaging
approaches to studying the neurodevelopmental effects of malnutrition in southeast Asia". (posted 5/22/16)

Graduate student Theresa Gildner was recently awarded a Wenner-Gren Foundation grant ($20,000) for her dissertation project, "Life history tradeoffs between testosterone and immune function: Testing the immunocompetence handicap hypothesis". (posted 4/27/16)

I gave a talk as part of the OMSI Science Pub series on March 10--the talk ("
To Siberia and Beyond: Studying Human Biology and Health at the Edge of the World") discussed the Indigenous Siberian Health and Adaptation project. (posted 4/3/16)

My Siberia research was recently profiled by UO Advancement as part of UO's ongoing $2 billion fundraising campaign. Most of the video focuses on creating research opportunities for undergraduates. Here's the link (posted 7/22/15)

                      snodgrass -- university of oregon profiles in

News/Press Archive (Selected Stories)

Our collaborative work with the Oregon Social Learning Center (OSLC) on the effects of intimate partner violence on cortisol rhythms was covered by the Oregonian/Oregon Live and the UK's Daily Mail, among other media outlets.

Our collaborative research on the evolution of facial attractiveness, led by Isabel Scott of Brunel University and Ian Penton-Voak of the University of Bristol, was profiled on the UO website and picked up by the LA Times, among other media outlets. 

Our work on sleep and cognitive function based on the SAGE project was profiled on the UO website, and was picked up by several media outlets such as Huffington Post and NPR (recorded by KLCC and aired on Morning Edition and All Things Considered).

Click here for a recent article on cold stress and acclimatization from Discovery News--"Cold Weather's Coming: Is Your Body Ready?"

Here's a link to a story from UO's Around the O on a review article I published in Annual Review of Anthropology on the health of native northern populations.

Click here for a recent news piece in Science about ecological immunology research by the Shuar Health and Life History Project and collaborators Thom McDade and Paula Tallman.

Click here for a recent article from Science on the evolution of the human diet, which discusses some of my research.

Click here for a recent Room for Debate opinion piece from The New York Times that discusses the effects of recent secular trends in height and longevity, and responds to the question "Do we want to be supersize humans?"

Current Research Projects
Bones and Behavior
I'm also a co-organizer (with Susan Anton of NYU) of the Bones and Behavior Working Group, and I manage the website bonesandbehavior.org. Our group is dedicated to fostering a greater synthesis across biological anthropology with the specific aim of developing integrative approaches to research questions concerning human and primate adaptation.

bones and behavior monkey pic     bones and behavior sitting height     bones and behavior trudy pic

Publications on the Horizon
  • Schrock JM, McClure HH, Snodgrass JJ, Liebert MA, Charlton K, Arokiasamy P, Naidoo N, and Kowal P. Social disparities in food insecurity and body composition among older adults in India: The effects of socioeconomic status, caste, and religion in the Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE). Am J Hum Biol. Under review.
  • Capistrant BD, Charlton K, Snodgrass JJ, and Kowal P. Do determinants of hypertension status vary between Ghana and South Africa? Evidence from the Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE). BMC Public Health. Under review.
  • Goldman EA, Eick GN, Compton D, Kowal P, Snodgrass JJ, Eisenberg DTA, and Sterner KN. Evaluating minimally invasive sample collection methods for telomere length measurement. Am J Hum Biol. Under review.
Forthcoming Papers
  • Arokiasamy P, Uttamacharya U, Kowal P, Capistrant BD, Gildner TE, Thiele E, Biritwum RB, Yawson AE, Mensah G, Maximova T, Wu F, Guo Y, Zheng Y, Kalula S, Salinas Rodriguez A, Manrique-Espinoza B, Liebert MA, Eick G, Sterner KN, Barrett TM, Duedu K, Gonzales E, Ng N, Negin J, Jiang Y, Byles J, Madurai L, Minicuci N, Snodgrass JJ, and Naidoo N. Chronic non-communicable diseases in six low and middle-income countries: findings from WHO's Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE) Wave 1. Am J Epidemiol, in press.
  • Eick GN, Kowal P, Barrett T, Thiele EA, and Snodgrass JJ. Enzyme-linked immunoassay-based quantitative measurement of apolipoprotein-B (ApoB) in dried blood spots, a biomarker of cardiovascular disease risk. Biodemog Social Bio, in press.
Recent Publications (Publication Archive) (Google Scholar Link)
  • Raichlen DA, Pontzer H, Harris J, Mabulla AZP, Marlowe FW, Snodgrass JJ, Eick G, Berbesque JC, Sancilio A, and Wood BM. 2017. Physical activity patterns and biomarkers of cardiovascular disease risk in hunter-gatherers. Am J Hum Biol, in press. (link to paper)
  • Gildner TE, Liebert MA, Capistrant BD, D'Este C, Snodgrass JJ, and Kowal P. 2017. Perceived income adequacy and well-being among older adults in six low- and middle-income countries. J Gerontol Soc Sci, in press. (link to paper)
  • Gildner TE, Cepon-Robins TJ, Liebert MA, Urlacher SS, Snodgrass JJ, Madimenos FC, and Sugiyama LS. 2016. Regional variation in helminth infection by age cohort and sex: Health effects of market integration among the indigenous Shuar of Amazonian Ecuador. J Physiol Anthropol 35: 28. (link to paper)
  • Brand CM, Boose KJ, Squires EC, Marchant LF, White FJ, Meinelt A, and Snodgrass JJ. 2016. Hair plucking, stress, and urinary cortisol among captive bonobos (Pan paniscus). Zoo Biology 35: 415-422. (link to paper)
  • Eick G, Urlacher SS, McDade TW, Kowal P, and Snodgrass JJ. 2016. Validation of an optimized ELISA for quantitative assessment of Epstein-Barr virus antibodies from dried blood spots. Biodemog Social Bio 62: 222-233. (link to paper)
  • Biritwum RB, Minicuci N, Yawson AE, Theou O, Mensah GP, Naidoo N, Wu F, Guo Y, Zheng Y, Jiang Y, Maximova T, Kalula S, Arokiasamy P, Salinas-Rodriguez A, Manrique-Espinoza B, Snodgrass JJ, Sterner KN, Eick G, Liebert MA, Schrock J, Afshar S, Thiele E, Vollmer S, Harttgen K, Strulik H, Byles JE, Rockwood K, Mitnitski A, Chatterji S, and Kowal P. 2016. Prevalence of and factors associated with frailty and disability in older adults from China, Ghana, India, Mexico, Russia and South Africa. Maturitas 9: 8-18. (link to paper)
  • Urlacher SS, Liebert MA, Snodgrass JJ, Blackwell AD, Cepon-Robins TJ, Gildner TE, Madimenos FC, Amir D, Bribiescas RG, and Sugiyama LS. 2016. Heterogeneous effects of market integration on subadult growth and nutritional status among the Amazonian Shuar. Ann Hum Biol 43: 316-329. (link to paper)
  • Blackwell AD, Trumble BC, Suarez IM, Stieglitz J, Beheim B, Snodgrass JJ, Kaplan H, and Gurven M. 2016. Immune function in Amazonian horticulturalists. Ann Hum Biol 43: 382-396. (link to paper)
  • Barrett TM, Liebert MA, Schrock JM, Cepon-Robins TJ, Mathur A, Agarwal H, Kowal P, and Snodgrass JJ. 2016. Physical function and activity among older adults in Jodhpur, India. Ann Hum Biol 43: 488-491. (link to paper)
  • Streeter EA, Squires EC, Leonard WR, Tarskaia LA, Klimova TM, Fedorova VI, Baltakhinova ME, Krivoshapkin VG, and Snodgrass JJ. 2016. Adiponectin, hemoglobin, and cardiovascular risk in an indigenous Siberian population. Am J Hum Biol 28: 580-583. (link to paper)
  • Levy SB, Leonard WR, Tarskaia LA, Klimova TM, Fedorova VI, Baltakhinova ME, Krivoshapkin VG, and Snodgrass JJ. 2016. Lifestyle mediates seasonal changes in metabolic health among the Yakut (Sakha) of northeastern Siberia. Am J Hum Biol 28, in press. (link to paper)
  • Urlacher SS, Snodgrass JJ, Liebert MA, Cepon-Robins TJ, Gildner TE, and Sugiyama LS. 2016. The application of knemometry to measure childhood short-term growth among the indigenous Shuar of Ecuador. Am J Phys Anthropol 160: 353-357. (link to paper)
  • Urlacher SS, Blackwell AD, Liebert MA, Madimenos FC, Cepon-Robins TJ, Gildner TE, Snodgrass JJ, and Sugiyama LS. 2016. Physical Growth of the Shuar: Height, Weight, and BMI Growth References for an Indigenous Amazonian Population. Am J Hum Biol 28: 16-30. (link to paper)
  • Snodgrass JJ, Liebert MA, Cepon-Robins TJ, Barrett TM, Mathur A, Chatterji S, and Kowal P. 2016. Accelerometer-measured physical activity among older adults in urban India: Results of a Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE) sub-study. Am J Hum Biol 28: 412-420. (link to paper)
  • Kowal P, Arokiasamy P, Afshar S, Pati S, and Snodgrass JJ. 2015. Multimorbidity: Health care that counts past one for 1.2 billion older adults. Lancet 385: 2252-2253. pdfpic
  • Valeggia CR, Snodgrass JJ. 2015. Health of indigenous peoples. Annu Rev Anthropol 44: 117-135. pdfpic
  • Gildner TE, Barrett TM, Liebert MA, Kowal P, and Snodgrass JJ. 2015. Does BMI generated by self-reported height and weight measure up in older adults? Results from the Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE). BMC Obesity 2: 44. pdfpic
  • Arokiasamy P, Uttamacharya, Jain K, Biritwum RB, Yawson AE, Fan W, Guo Y, Maximova T, Espinoza BM, Salinas-Rodriguez A, Afshar S, Pati S, Ice G, Banerjee S, Liebert MA, Snodgrass JJ, Naidoo N, Chatterji S, and Kowal P. 2015. The impact of multimorbidity on adult physical and mental health in low- and middle-income countries: what does the Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE) reveal? BMC Medicine 13: 178. pdfpic
  • Kim HK, Tiberio SS, Capaldi DM, Shortt JW., Squires EC, and Snodgrass JJ. 2015. Intimate partner violence and diurnal cortisol patterns in couples. Psychoneuroendocrinology 51: 35-46. pdfpic
  • Wu F, Guo Y, Chatterji S, Zheng Y, Naidoo N, Jiang Y, Biritwum R, Yawson A, Minicuci N, Rodriguez A, Espinoza B, Maximova T, Peltzer K, Phaswanamafuya N, Snodgrass JJ, Thiele E, Ng N, and Kowal P. 2015. Common risk factors for chronic non-communicable diseases among older adults in China, Ghana, Mexico, India, Russia and South Africa: The Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE) Wave 1. BMC Public Health 15: 88. pdfpic
  • McClure HH, Snodgrass JJ, Martinez CR, Squires EC, Jimenez RA, Isiordia LE, Eddy JM, and McDade TW. 2015. Stress, place, and allostatic load among Mexican immigrant farmworkers in Oregon. J Immigr Minor Health 17: 1518-1525. pdfpic
  • McClure HH, Shortt JW, Eddy JM, Holmes A, van Uum S, Russell E, Koren G, Sheeber L, Davis B, Snodgrass JJ, and Martinez CR. 2015. Associations among mother-child contact, parenting stress, and mother and child adjustment related to incarceration. In: J. Poehlmann-Tynan (ed.) Children's Contact with Incarcerated Parents: Implications for Policy and Intervention. Switzerland: Springer International Publishing, pp. 58-82. pdfpic
  • Rivas Marino G, Negin J, Snodgrass JJ, Salinas Rodriguez A, Espinoza BSM, and Kowal P. 2015. Body mass index, physical activity and associated factors among older adults in Mexico: An analysis of the Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE). Am J Hum Biol 27: 326-333. pdfpic
  • Madimenos FC, Liebert MA, Cepon-Robins TJ, Snodgrass JJ, and Sugiyama LS. 2015. Determining osteoporosis risk in older Colono adults from rural Amazonian Ecuador using calcaneal ultrasonometry. Am J Hum Biol 27: 139-142. pdfpic
  • Wilson HJ, Leonard WR, Tarskaia LA, Klimova TM, Krivoshapkin VG, and Snodgrass JJ. 2015. Do physical activity and sedentary behavior relate to cardio-metabolic risk factor clustering in indigenous Siberian adults? Am J Hum Biol 27: 149-156. pdfpic
Selected Publications (Publication Archive)
  • Scott IM, Clark AP, Josephson SC, Boyette A, Cuthill I, Fried R, Gibson M, Hewlett B, Jamieson M, Jankowiak W, Honey PL, Huang Z, Liebert MA, Purzycki BG, Shaver J, Snodgrass JJ, Sosis R, Sugiyama LS, Swami V, Yu DW, Zhao Y, and Penton-Voak IS. 2014. Human preferences for sexually dimorphic faces may be evolutionarily novel. PNAS 111: 14388-14393. pdfpic
  • Peltzer K, Williams JS, Kowal P, Negin J, Snodgrass JJ, Yawson AE, Minicuci N, Thiele EA, Phaswana-Mafuya N, Biritwum R, and Chatterji, S. 2014. Universal health coverage in emerging economies: Findings on health care utilization by older adults in China, Ghana, India, Mexico, the Russian Federation and South Africa. Glob Health Act 7: 25314. pdfpic
  • Leonard WR, Levy SB, Tarskaia LA, Klimova TM, Fedorova VI, Baltakhinova ME, Krivoshapkin VG, and Snodgrass JJ. 2014. Seasonal variation in basal metabolic rates among the Yakut (Sakha) of northeastern Siberia. Am J Hum Biol 26: 437-445. pdfpic
  • Liebert MA, Snodgrass JJ, Blackwell AD, Madimenos FC, Cepon TJ, and Sugiyama LS. 2013. Implications of market integration for cardiovascular and metabolic health among an indigenous Amazonian Ecuadorian population. Ann Hum Biol 40: 228-242. pdfpic
  • Snodgrass JJ. 2013. Health of indigenous circumpolar populations. Annu Rev Anthropol 42: 69-87. pdfpic
  • Snodgrass JJ. 2012. Human energetics. In: Stinson et al. (eds.) Human Biology: An Evolutionary and Biocultural Approach (2nd Edition). New York: Wiley, pp. 327-386. pdfpic
  • Kowal P, Chatterji S, Naidoo N, Biritwum R, Wu F, Lopez Ridaura R, Maximova T, Arokiasamy P, Phaswana-Mafuya N, Williams SR, Snodgrass JJ, Minicuci N, D'Este C, Boerma JT. 2012. Cohort profile: The WHO Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE). Int J Epidemiol 41: 1639-1649. pdfpic
  • Anton SC and Snodgrass JJ. 2012. Origin and evolution of genus Homo: A new perspective. Curr Anthropol 53 (Supplement 6): S479-S496. pdfpic
  • McDade TW, Tallman PS, Madimenos FC, Liebert MA, Cepon TJ, Sugiyama L, and Snodgrass JJ. 2012. Analysis of variability of high sensitivity C-reactive protein in lowland Ecuador reveals no evidence of chronic low-grade inflammation. Am J Hum Biol 24: 675-681. pdfpic
  • Leonard WR, Robertson ML, Snodgrass JJ. 2010. What did humans evolve to eat? Metabolic implications of major trends in hominid evolution. In: Moffat and Prowse (eds.) Human Diet and Nutrition in Biocultural Perspective: Past Meets Present. New York: Berghahn Books, pp. 13-34. pdfpic
  • Snodgrass JJ and Leonard WR. 2009. Neandertal energetics revisited: Insights into population dynamics and life history evolution. PaleoAnthropology 2009: 220-237.
  • Snodgrass JJ, Sorensen MV, Tarskaia LA, Leonard WR. 2007. Adaptive dimensions of health research among indigenous Siberians. Am J Hum Biol 19: 165-180. (cover photo)
  • McDade TW, Williams SR, Snodgrass JJ. 2007. What a drop can do: Dried blood spots as a minimally-invasive method for integrating biomarkers in population-based research. Demography 44: 899-925.
  • Snodgrass JJ, Leonard WR, Tarskaia LA, Schoeller DA. 2006. Total energy expenditure in the Yakut (Sakha) of Siberia as measured by the doubly labeled water method.  Am J Clin Nutr 84: 798-806.
  • Snodgrass JJ, Leonard WR, Tarskaia LA, Alekseev VP, Krivoshapkin VG. 2005. Basal metabolic rate in the Yakut (Sakha) of Siberia. Am J Hum Biol 17: 155-172. (cover photo)
(Go to Publication Archive)

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