uo bar

josh snodgrass 2018

J. Josh Snodgrass, PhD

Department of Anthropology

University of Oregon
1321 Kincaid Street
Eugene, OR  97403

Associate Vice Provost for
  Undergraduate Studies
Division of Undergraduate Studies
Office: 372 Oregon Hall

E-mail: jjosh@uoregon.edu

Global Health Biomarker 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

Spring 2018 Office Hours
By appointment 

Links to Information on Publications, Research Interests, and Teaching
Research Interests
Global Health Biomarker Lab
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

Co-Director, Center for Global Health, University of Oregon (2016-)
Director, Office of Distinguished Scholarships, University of Oregon (2016-)
Director, Global Health Biomarker Lab, University of Oregon (since 2007)

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

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

As part of my role as Vice President of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (AAPA), I was the primary organizer and scientific chair for the annual meeting in New Orleans (2017) and will be for the upcoming meeting in Austin (2018). These meetings bring together approximately 2000 scientists from around the world and take place in conjunction with the annual meetings of the Human Biology Association, the Paleopathology Association, and the American Association for Anthropological Genetics. The AAPA New Orleans meeting was the largest ever with a record number of presentations (~1300) and attendees (~2100). The 2017 AAPA linked up with the March for Science, which took place on April 22 in Washington DC and in over 500 additional cities around the world.
The New Orleans March for Science featured speeches by the AAPA President Susan Antón and member Agustin Fuentes at the pre-March rally and the march itself included approximately 5000 people, including ~1400 from AAPA.

Why March for Science?
The AAPA officers (
Susan Antón, Leslie Aiello, Josh Snodgrass, and Anne Grauer) issued the following statement about the march:

AAPA joins with the March for Science to celebrate our passion for rigorous, non-partisan, evidence-based science. We aim to:
  • Promote science education that teaches critical thinking and scientific rigor
  • Foster open and honest science communication and inclusive public outreach
  • Champion evidence-based decision making
  • Protect funding for scientific research and its applications
  • Acknowledge that science does not have borders and that the free movement of international scientists and students is necessary to achieve our best results
Science serves the common good. We celebrate this mission and these goals.

aapa and the march for science
new orleans march for science organizers

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 factors 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

Biomarkers Lab
I direct the Global Health Biomarkers Lab, an immunology/endocrinology lab, that focuses on the development and application of minimally invasive techniques for assessing health and physiology in population-based research. The lab is managed by Dr. Geeta Eick and specializes on the development of dried blood spot (DBS) techniques and the application of minimally invasive biomarkers (DBS, saliva, urine, feces, and hair) to global health questions. We currently are involved with research projects in over a dozen countries, including the US.

snodgrass global health biomarker lab

cmer     cmer lab

Recent News/Press
Congratulations to graduate student Josh Schrock who received a Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research grant for his dissertation project ("Parasitic infection, sickness behavior, and immune function among Shuar forager-horticulturalists of Amazonian Ecuador") (posted 12/31/17)

Former graduate student Melissa Liebert (PhD in 2016) is now an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Northern Arizona University. Congratulations, Melissa!! (posted 9/1/17)

Congratulations to Heather Shattuck-Heidorn who completed her PhD at Harvard in Human Evolutionary Biology with research in New England with Ecuadorian immigrants and in Ecuador in conjunction with the Shuar Health and Life History Project (The Innate Immune System, Energetics, and the Early-Life Environment). Heather did some of her undergraduate work at UO (as part of an NSE rotation) and worked in the Global Health Biomarker Lab. I served on her dissertation committee at Harvard (posted 5/21/17)

Congratulations to Eliza Hallett for receiving a Human Biology Association Student Member Travel Award to support her travel to New Orleans in April to present her senior thesis research in the form of a poster (The Shuar Health and Life History Project: Chronic helminth infection is associated with kidney function in an indigenous Ecuadorian forager-horticulturalist population) (posted 3/18/17)

Undergraduates Alli Dona, Eliza Hallett, and Tigest Mequanint presented on their research at the Oregon capitol on March 9 as part of UO Day at the Capitol.
They were part of a group of 10 UO undergraduates from various STEM disciplines that presented on their work during this day of celebration and advocacy (posted 3/10/17)

Undergraduate Eliza Hallett successfully defended her UO Honors College thesis "Relationships between kidney function, systemic inflammation, and age in the indigenous Shuar of Ecuador: The Shuar Health and Life History Project" (posted 3/6/17)

Graduate student Theresa Gildner was recently awarded an NSF grant for her dissertation research, "
Doctoral Dissertation Research: Life history tradeoffs between testosterone and immune function among Shuar forager-horticulturalists of Amazonian Ecuador" (posted 3/5/17)

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

News/Press Archive (Selected Stories)
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.

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
Publications on the Horizon
  • Gildner TE, Liebert MA, Snodgrass JJ, and Kowal P. Mind over matter: Are physical performance and subjective well-being linked in older adults? Results from the Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE). J Aging Phys Act. Under review.
  • Gildner TE, Salinas-Rodriguez A, Manrique-Espinoza B, Moreno-Tamayo K, Snodgrass JJ, and Kowal P. Does poor sleep impair cognition during aging? The longitudinal effects of sleep duration and quality on cognitive performance in older Mexican adults. Journal of Sleep Research. Under review.
  • Amir D, Jordan MR, McAuliffe KM, Valeggia CR, Sugiyama LS, Bribiescas RG, Snodgrass JJ, and Dunham Y. The developmental origins of risk and time preferences across diverse societies. PNAS. Under review.
  • Sznycer D, Xygalatas D, Agey E, Alami S, An X-F, Ananyeva KI, Atkinson QD, Broitman BR, Conte TJ, Flores C, Fukushima S, Hitokoto H, Kharitonov AN, Onyishi CN, Onyishi IE, Romero PP, Schrock JM, Snodgrass JJ, Sugiyama LS, Takemura K, Townsend C, Zhuang J-Y, Aktipis CA, Cronk L, Cosmides L, and Tooby J. Cross-cultural invariances in the architecture of shame. PNAS. 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). SA Heart (Journal of the South African Heart Association). Under review.
  • Gildner TE, Ng N, Fan W, Guo Y, Snodgrass JJ, Kowal P. Ideal cardiovascular health (Life's Simple 7) and cognitive test performance among older Chinese adults. Global Public Health. Under review.
Forthcoming Papers
  • Urlacher SS, Ellison PT, Sugiyama LS, Pontzer H, Eick G, Liebert MA, Cepon-Robins T, Gildner TE, and Snodgrass JJ. Tradeoffs between immune function and childhood growth among Amazonian forager-horticulturalists. PNAS.

Recent Publications (Publication Archive) (Google Scholar Link)
  • Stagaman K, Cepon-Robins TJ, Liebert MA, Gildner TE, Urlacher SS, Madimenos FC, Guillemin K, Snodgrass JJ, Sugiyama LS, and Bohannan BJM. 2018. Market Integration Predicts Human Gut Microbiome Attributes across a Gradient of Economic Development. mSystems. (link to paper)
  • Goldman EA, Eick GN, Compton D, Kowal P, Snodgrass JJ, Eisenberg DTA, and Sterner KN. 2018. Evaluating minimally invasive sample collection methods for telomere length measurement. Am J Hum Biol 30. (link to paper)
  • Schrock JM, McClure HH, Snodgrass JJ, Liebert MA, Charlton K, Arokiasamy P, Naidoo N, and Kowal P. 2017. Food insecurity partially mediates associations between social disadvantage and body composition among older adults in India: Results from the Study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE). Am J Hum Biol 29. (link to paper)
  • 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. 2017. Chronic Noncommunicable Diseases in 6 Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Findings From Wave 1 of the World Health Organization's Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (SAGE). Am J Epidemiol 185: 414-428. (link to paper)
  • Eick GN, Kowal P, Barrett T, Thiele EA, and Snodgrass JJ. 2017. Enzyme-linked immunoassay-based quantitative measurement of apolipoprotein-B (ApoB) in dried blood spots, a biomarker of cardiovascular disease risk. Biodemog Social Bio 63: 116-130. (link to paper)
  • 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 29: DOI: 10.1002/ajhb.22919. (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)
Selected Publications (Publication Archive)
  • 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)
  • 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)
  • 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)
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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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