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Birth and human evolution - implications from computer-assisted reconstructions

English title Birth and human evolution - implications from computer-assisted reconstructions
Applicant Häusler Martin
Number 176319
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Institut für Evolutionäre Medizin IEM Medizinische Fakultät Universität Zürich
Institution of higher education University of Zurich - ZH
Main discipline Anthropology, Primatology
Start/End 01.10.2017 - 30.09.2021
Approved amount 800'000.00
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All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Anthropology, Primatology
Gynaecology

Keywords (5)

sexual dimorphism; geometric morphometrics; evolutionary medicine; human evolution; obstetrics

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
Die menschliche Geburt ist ungewöhnlich komplex verglichen mit anderen Säugetieren. Geburtsschwierigkeiten kommen deshalb häufig vor, welche zu Problemen für Mutter und Kind führen und heutzutage vielfach mit Kaiserschnitten gelöst werden müssen. Diese Geburtsschwierigkeiten werden traditionell durch einen evolutionären Konflikt erklärt zwischen einem möglichst engen, gut an den aufrechten Gang angepassten Becken und einem möglichst weiten Geburtskanal, welches Neugeborene mit einem grossen Gehirn erlaubt. Dieses sogenannte obstetrische Dilemma kam in den letzten Jahren von zahlreichen Seiten unter Beschuss, ohne dass aber eine gute Alternative vorgeschlagen wurde. Unser Projekt untersucht nun das obstetrische Dilemma von drei verschiedenen Aspekten.
Lay summary

Die Erforschung der evolutionären Hintergründe der Geburtsschwierigkeiten wird durch den fragmentarischen Zustand der meisten Hominiden-Fossilien erschwert. Verschiedene Rekonstruktionen der gleichen Beckenfossilien führten zudem oft zu widersprüchlichen Resultaten. In einem ersten Teil des Projektes wenden wir modernste CAD-Techniken und statistische Methoden an, um eine repräsentative Auswahl der Becken unserer fossilen Vorfahren virtuell zu rekonstruieren. Dabei wollen wir den Spielraum ausloten, mit dem die Beckenfragmente unterschiedlich zusammengesetzt werden können, um den Rekonstruktionsprozess möglichst objektiv und reproduzierbar zu machen.

Der zweite Teil des Projektes untersucht die Hypothese, dass der Geschlechtsunterschied im Becken zusammen mit der Gehirngrösse während der menschlichen Evolution zunahm. Dies gibt gleichzeitig einen unabhängigen Anhaltspunkt für ein knappes Verhältnis zwischen mütterlichem Becken und dem kindlichen Kopf.

Im dritten Teil des Projekts untersuchen wir mittels Computersimulationen den Geburtsvorgang im Verlaufe der menschlichen Evolution. Dies erlaubt uns erstmals, die Interaktion des Kindes mit der komplexen dreidimensionalen Form des Geburtskanals voll zu berücksichtigen, aber auch die ganze Dynamik des Geburtsvorganges mit der Einwirkung der Weichteile, der Beckenbodenmuskulatur, der Lockerung der Bänder und der Verformbarkeit des kindlichen Kopfes.

Wissenschaftlicher und gesellschaftlicher Kontext des Forschungsprojekts

Unser innovatives Projekt stellt einen bedeutenden Fortschritt über frühere Studien dar, welche auf umstrittenen Beckenrekonstruktionen beruhten und üblicherweise einige wenige Beckenmasse mit dem Durchmesser des kindlichen Kopfes verglichen. Unsere Resultate werden nicht nur helfen, den evolutionären Ursprung der Geburtsschwierigkeiten beim Menschen zu verstehen; sie sind auch fundamental für zukünftige biomechanische Studien über die Evolution des aufrechten Ganges. 
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 22.10.2017

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Sacrum morphology supports taxonomic heterogeneity of “Australopithecus africanus” at Sterkfontein Member 4
Fornai Cinzia, Krenn Viktoria A., Mitteroecker Philipp, Webb Nicole M., Haeusler Martin (2021), Sacrum morphology supports taxonomic heterogeneity of “Australopithecus africanus” at Sterkfontein Member 4, in Communications Biology, 4(1), 347-347.
Morphological variation of the deciduous second molars in the Baka Pygmies
Šimková Petra G., Weber Gerhard W., Ramirez Rozzi Fernando V., Slimani Lotfi, Sadoine Jérémy, Fornai Cinzia (2021), Morphological variation of the deciduous second molars in the Baka Pygmies, in Scientific Reports, 11(1), 16480-16480.
Response to Comment on “ A Middle Pleistocene Homo from Nesher Ramla, Israel”
May Hila, Sarig Rachel, Pokhojaev Ariel, Fornai Cinzia, Martinón-Torres María, Bermúdez de Castro José María, Weber Gerhard W., Zaidner Yossi, Hershkovitz Israel (2021), Response to Comment on “ A Middle Pleistocene Homo from Nesher Ramla, Israel”, in Science, 374(6572), eabl5789.
The dental remains from the Early Upper Paleolithic of Manot Cave, Israel
Sarig Rachel, Fornai Cinzia, Pokhojaev Ariel, May Hila, Hans Mark, Latimer Bruce, Barzilai Omry, Quam Rolf, Weber Gerhard W. (2021), The dental remains from the Early Upper Paleolithic of Manot Cave, Israel, in Journal of Human Evolution, 160, 102648-102648.
Sex determination accuracy using the human sacrum in a Central European sampleSex determination accuracy using the human sacrum in a Central European sample
Krenn Viktoria A., Fornai Cinzia, Webb Nicole M., Haeusler Martin (2021), Sex determination accuracy using the human sacrum in a Central European sampleSex determination accuracy using the human sacrum in a Central European sample, in Anthropologischer Anzeiger, 1415.
A Middle Pleistocene Homo from Nesher Ramla, Israel
Hershkovitz Israel, May Hila, Sarig Rachel, Pokhojaev Ariel, Grimaud-Hervé Dominique, Bruner Emiliano, Fornai Cinzia, Quam Rolf, Arsuaga Juan Luis, Krenn Viktoria A., Martinón-Torres Maria, de Castro José María Bermúdez, Martín-Francés Laura, Slon Viviane, Albessard-Ball Lou, Vialet Amélie, Schüler Tim, Manzi Giorgio, Profico Antonio, Di Vincenzo Fabio, Weber Gerhard W., Zaidner Yossi (2021), A Middle Pleistocene Homo from Nesher Ramla, Israel, in Science, 372(6549), 1424-1428.
The obstetrical dilemma hypothesis: there's life in the old dog yet
Haeusler Martin, Grunstra Nicole D.S., Martin Robert D., Krenn Viktoria A., Fornai Cinzia, Webb Nicole M. (2021), The obstetrical dilemma hypothesis: there's life in the old dog yet, in Biological Reviews, brv.12744-brv.12744.
A tight squeeze for chimpanzees: the role of joint laxity and fetal head orientation during birth
WebbN, FornaiC, KrennV, HerbstE, HaeuslerM (2021), A tight squeeze for chimpanzees: the role of joint laxity and fetal head orientation during birth, in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol, 10, 142.
Deformation-based geometric morphometrics captures the morphology of the modern human hipbone
Fornai C, Urciuoli A, Krenn V, Woodert M, Haeusler M, Webb N (2021), Deformation-based geometric morphometrics captures the morphology of the modern human hipbone, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 174(S71), 33.
Do chimpanzees really have a spacious birth canal? A reanalysis of cephalopelvic proportions and implications for the obstetrical dilemma in humans
Webb N, Fornai C, Krenn V, Haeusler M (2021), Do chimpanzees really have a spacious birth canal? A reanalysis of cephalopelvic proportions and implications for the obstetrical dilemma in humans, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 174(S71), 111.
Dynamic finite-element simulations reveal early origin of complex human birth pattern
FrémondièrePierre, ThollonT, MarchalF, WebbN, HaeuslerM (2021), Dynamic finite-element simulations reveal early origin of complex human birth pattern, in Research Square, 609827.
Evolution of hominin pelvic sexual dimorphism
WoodertM, KrennV, WebbN, HaeuslerM (2021), Evolution of hominin pelvic sexual dimorphism, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 174(S71), 115.
How sacralizations and lumbarizations shape the human sacrum.
KrennViktoria (2021), How sacralizations and lumbarizations shape the human sacrum., in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol , 10, 66.
New insights on hip bone sexual dimorphism in adolescents and adults using deformation-based geometric morphometrics
FornaiC, WebbNM, UrciuoliA, KrennV, CorronL, HaeuslerM (2021), New insights on hip bone sexual dimorphism in adolescents and adults using deformation-based geometric morphometrics, in Journal of Anthropological Sciences, 99, 1-18.
Possible vertebral brucellosis infection in a Neanderthal
RothschildB, HaeuslerM (2021), Possible vertebral brucellosis infection in a Neanderthal, 567955.
Possible vertebral brucellosis infection in a Neanderthal
RothschildBruce, HaeuslerMartin (2021), Possible vertebral brucellosis infection in a Neanderthal, in Research Square, 567951.
Which came first: the pelvis or the EGG? Energetics of Gestation and Growth versus Obstetrical Dilemma
HaeuslerM, GrunstraN, FornaiC, KrennV, MartinR, WebbN (2021), Which came first: the pelvis or the EGG? Energetics of Gestation and Growth versus Obstetrical Dilemma, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 174(Suppl 71), 43.
Locomotor and taxonomic diversity of Sterkfontein hominins not supported by current trabecular evidence of the femoral head
Haeusler Martin, Webb Nicole M., Krenn Viktoria A., Fornai Cinzia (2020), Locomotor and taxonomic diversity of Sterkfontein hominins not supported by current trabecular evidence of the femoral head, in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117(46), 28568-28569.
Pelvis
HaeuslerMartin, RUffChristopher (2020), Pelvis, in Richmond B. G., Zipfel B., Ward C. V. (ed.), Oxford University Press, Oxford, 181-201.
Rib cage anatomy in Homo erectus suggests a recent evolutionary origin of modern human body shape
Bastir Markus, García-Martínez Daniel, Torres-Tamayo Nicole, Palancar Carlos A., Beyer Benoît, Barash Alon, Villa Chiara, Sanchis-Gimeno Juan Alberto, Riesco-López Alberto, Nalla Shahed, Torres-Sánchez Isabel, García-Río Francisco, Been Ella, Gómez-Olivencia Asier, Haeusler Martin, Williams Scott A., Spoor Fred (2020), Rib cage anatomy in Homo erectus suggests a recent evolutionary origin of modern human body shape, in Nature Ecology & Evolution, s41559-020.
Hemoglobin concentration of young men at residential altitudes between 200 and 2000m mirrors Switzerland's topography
Staub Kaspar, Haeusler Martin, Bender Nicole, Morozova Irina, Eppenberger Patrick Erik, Panczak Radoslaw, Zwahlen Marcel, Schaer Dominik J, Maggiorini Marco Valentino, Ulrich Silvia, Gassmann Norina N, Muckenthaler Martina Ulrike, Rühli Frank, Gassmann Max (2020), Hemoglobin concentration of young men at residential altitudes between 200 and 2000m mirrors Switzerland's topography, in Blood, 135, 1066-1069.
Accuracy of transferring analog dental casts to a virtual articulator
Úry Előd, Fornai Cinzia, Weber Gerhard W. (2020), Accuracy of transferring analog dental casts to a virtual articulator, in The Journal of Prosthetic Dentistry, 123(2), 305-313.
A comparative morphometric assessment of sexual dimorphism in the human sacrum
KrennV, FornaiC, WebbN, HaeuslerM (2020), A comparative morphometric assessment of sexual dimorphism in the human sacrum, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 171(S69), 149.
Deciduous second molar morphological variation in the Baka pygmies, Cameroon
ŠimkováP, WeberGerhard W., Ramirez-RozFernando, FornaiC (2020), Deciduous second molar morphological variation in the Baka pygmies, Cameroon, in Proceedings of the European Society for the studies of Human Evolution, 9, 109.
Deciduous second molar morphological variation in the Baka pygmies, Cameroon
ŠimkováP, WeberG, Ramirez-RozziF, FornaiC (2020), Deciduous second molar morphological variation in the Baka pygmies, Cameroon, in Proceedings of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution, 9, 109.
Geometric Morphometric Analysis of the dental remains from the Early Upper Paleolithic of Manot Cave, Israel
SarigR, FornaiC, MayH, BarzilaiO, WeberG (2020), Geometric Morphometric Analysis of the dental remains from the Early Upper Paleolithic of Manot Cave, Israel, in Am. J. Phys. Anthropol., 171(S69), 247.
How to make a bipedal primate: 1 part phylogeny, 2 parts selection and a pinch of body size
WebbN, Harcourt-SmithW, PontzerH, HaeuslerM, GrabowskiM (2020), How to make a bipedal primate: 1 part phylogeny, 2 parts selection and a pinch of body size, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 171(S69), 303.
KSD-VP-1/1 from Woranso Mille, Ethiopia, does not conform to known Australopithecus afarensis pelvic morphology
HaeuslerM., FornaiCinzia, KrennV. A., WebbN. M. (2020), KSD-VP-1/1 from Woranso Mille, Ethiopia, does not conform to known Australopithecus afarensis pelvic morphology, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 171, 111.
Modern human molar morphology does not reveal geographical origin
HalászV, FornaiC, WeberG (2020), Modern human molar morphology does not reveal geographical origin, in Am. J. Phys. Anthropol, 171(S69), 112.
Pelvic evidence for taxonomic heterogeneity within Australopithecus at Sterkfontein Member 4 (South Africa)
Fornai C, Krenn V, Webb N, Haeusler M (2020), Pelvic evidence for taxonomic heterogeneity within Australopithecus at Sterkfontein Member 4 (South Africa), in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 171(S69), 88.
The partial skeleton StW 431 from Sterkfontein – Is it time to rethink the Plio-Pleistocene hominin diversity in South Africa?
MachoGabriele, FornaiCinzia, TardieuChristine, HopleyPhilip, HaeuslerMartin, ToussaintMichel (2020), The partial skeleton StW 431 from Sterkfontein – Is it time to rethink the Plio-Pleistocene hominin diversity in South Africa?, in Journal of Anthropological Sciences, 98, 73-88.
Upper Premolar Crown Variation in Great Apes
OberklammerN, FornaiCinzia, WeberG (2020), Upper Premolar Crown Variation in Great Apes, in Proceedings of the European Society for the studies of Human Evolution, 10, 89.
Upper Premolar Crown Variation in Great Apes
OberklammerN, FornaiC, WeberG (2020), Upper Premolar Crown Variation in Great Apes, in Proceedings of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution, 9, 89.
Variation of 3D outer and inner crown morphology in modern human mandibular premolars
Krenn Viktoria A., Fornai Cinzia, Wurm Lisa, Bookstein Fred L., Haeusler Martin, Weber Gerhard W. (2019), Variation of 3D outer and inner crown morphology in modern human mandibular premolars, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 169(4), 646-663.
Morphology, pathology, and the vertebral posture of the La Chapelle-aux-Saints Neandertal
Haeusler Martin, Trinkaus Erik, Fornai Cinzia, Müller Jonas, Bonneau Noémie, Boeni Thomas, Frater Nakita (2019), Morphology, pathology, and the vertebral posture of the La Chapelle-aux-Saints Neandertal, in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 116(11), 4923-4927.
Australopithecus variability at Sterkfontein: evidence from the pelvic remains
FornaiC, KrennV, WebbN, HaeuslerM (2019), Australopithecus variability at Sterkfontein: evidence from the pelvic remains, in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol, 8, 63.
KSD-VP-1/1: the “Big Man” just got bigger
WebbN, KrennV, FornaiC, HaeuslerM (2019), KSD-VP-1/1: the “Big Man” just got bigger, in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol, 8, 198.
Morphological variation and sexual dimorphism of the modern human sacrum
KrennV, FornaiC, HaeuslerM (2019), Morphological variation and sexual dimorphism of the modern human sacrum, in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol, 8, 98.
Musculoskeletal System
HaeuslerMartin, BenderNicole, AldakakLafi, GalassiFrancesco M., EppenbergerPatrick, HennebergMaciej, Rühli Frank (2019), Musculoskeletal System, in Brüne Martin, Schiefenhövel Wulf (ed.), Press, Oxford, 269-300.
Reviving australopithe-cine birth: contribution of numerical simulation
FrémondièreP, ThollonL, MarchalF, FornaiC, WebbN, Haeusler M (2019), Reviving australopithe-cine birth: contribution of numerical simulation, in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol, 8, 65.
Spinal pathologies in fossil hominins
HaeuslerMartin (2019), Spinal pathologies in fossil hominins, in Kramer P.A., Been Ella, Gómez-Olivencia A. (ed.), Spinger, Cham, 213-245.
The acquisition of human verticality with an emphasis on sagittal balance
TardieuChristine, HaeuslerMartin (2019), The acquisition of human verticality with an emphasis on sagittal balance, in Labelle Hubert, Gehrchen Martin, Pinheiro-Franco João Luiz , Roussouly Pierre (ed.), Thieme, New York, 13-22.
The partial skeleton StW 431 provides new insights into the palaeobiology of Plio-Pleistocene hominins from Sterkfontein, South Africa
MachoG, FornaiC, ToussaintM, HaeuslerM (2019), The partial skeleton StW 431 provides new insights into the palaeobiology of Plio-Pleistocene hominins from Sterkfontein, South Africa, in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol, 8, 116.
The partial skeleton StW 431 provides new insights into the palaeobiology of Plio-Pleistocene hominins from Sterkfontein, South Africa
MachoGabriele, FornaiCinzia, ToussaintMichel, HaeuslerMartin (2019), The partial skeleton StW 431 provides new insights into the palaeobiology of Plio-Pleistocene hominins from Sterkfontein, South Africa, in Proceedings of the European Society for the studies of Human Evolution, 8, 116.
Upper limb fossils of Homo naledi from the Lesedi Chamber, Rising Star System, South Africa
FeuerriegelElen, VoisinJean-Luc, ChurchillSteven, HaeuslerMartin, MathewsSandra, SchmidPeter, HawksJohn, BergerLee R. (2019), Upper limb fossils of Homo naledi from the Lesedi Chamber, Rising Star System, South Africa, in PaleoAnthropology, 311-349.
The earliest modern humans outside Africa
Hershkovitz Israel, Weber Gerhard W., Quam Rolf, Duval Mathieu, Grün Rainer, Kinsley Leslie, Ayalon Avner, Bar-Matthews Miryam, Valladas Helene, Mercier Norbert, Arsuaga Juan Luis, Martinón-Torres María, Bermúdez de Castro José María, Fornai Cinzia, Martín-Francés Laura, Sarig Rachel, May Hila, Krenn Viktoria A., Slon Viviane, Rodríguez Laura, García Rebeca, Lorenzo Carlos, Carretero Jose Miguel, Frumkin Amos, et al. (2018), The earliest modern humans outside Africa, in Science, 359(6374), 456-459.
CT-scan data of juvenile pelvises: application for 3D fossil reconstruction
Bonneau N, Fornai C, Krenn V, Gorincour G, Haeusler M (2018), CT-scan data of juvenile pelvises: application for 3D fossil reconstruction, in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol, 7, 22.
Morphological variation of the modern human sacrum with implications for early hominins
FornaiC, NüeschM, KrennV, HaeuslerM (2018), Morphological variation of the modern human sacrum with implications for early hominins, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 165(S66), 87-88.
Unexpectedly high morphological variability in the Australopithecus sacrum. Implications for sexual and taxonomic diversity
FornaiC, KrennV, NüeschM, HaeuslerM (2018), Unexpectedly high morphological variability in the Australopithecus sacrum. Implications for sexual and taxonomic diversity, in Proc Europ Soc Hum Evol, 7, 67.
Human gestation length: is it truncated?
Haeusler M, Grunstra N, Martin R, Webb N, Human gestation length: is it truncated?, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology.
Secondarily derived altriciality in humans: the conceptual contributions of Portmann to the Obstetrical Dilemma
Grunstra N, Haeusler M, Martin R, Webb N, Secondarily derived altriciality in humans: the conceptual contributions of Portmann to the Obstetrical Dilemma, in American Journal of Physical Anthropology.
The morphological consequences of segmentation anomalies in the human sacrum
KrennV, FornaiC, WebbN, WoodertM, ProschH, HaeuslerM, The morphological consequences of segmentation anomalies in the human sacrum, in American Journal of Biological Anthropology.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Christopher Ruff/John Hopkins University United States of America (North America)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Erik Trinkaus/Washington University, Saint Louis United States of America (North America)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Robert Martin/Field Museum, Chicago United States of America (North America)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Pierre Frémondière/School of Midwifery, Marseille France (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
François Marchal/Anthropologie, Aix Marseille Université France (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Nicole Grunstra/Konrad Lorenz Institut Wien Austria (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Katharina Harvati/Will Snyder, University of Tübingen Germany (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Thomas Frauenfelder/Universität Zürich Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Martin Urschler/University of Auckland New Zealand (Oceania)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Archäologischer Dienst Graubünden Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Bernhard Zipfel/University of the Witwatersrand South Africa (Africa)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Lionel Thollon/Laboratoire de Bioméchanique, Marseille France (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Karin Isler/Anthropologie, Uni Zürich Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Alessandro Uricioli/Institut Crusafont, Barcelona Spain (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Bernhard Zipfel, Witwatersrand University South Africa (Africa)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Markus Bastir/Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales, Madrid Spain (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Robyn Pickering, University of Cape Town South Africa (Africa)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Exchange of personnel
Gabriele Macho/University of Oxford Great Britain and Northern Ireland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Philippe Mitteröcker/Universität Wien Austria (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
Christine Tardieu/Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle France (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
11th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference A tight squeeze for chimpanzees: the role of joint laxity and fetal head orientation during birth 22.09.2021 virtual/wordwide, Germany Krenn Viktoria; Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole;
11th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference How sacralizations and lumbarizations shape the human sacrum 22.09.2021 virtual/wordwide, Germany Webb Nicole; Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria;
90th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists Talk given at a conference Do chimpanzees really have a spacious birth canal? A reanalysis of cephalopelvic proportions and implications for the obstetrical dilemma in humans 07.04.2021 virtual/worldwide, United States of America Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin; Krenn Viktoria; Webb Nicole;
90th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists Talk given at a conference Deformation-based geometric morphometrics captures the morphology of the modern human hipbone 07.04.2021 https://physanth.org/meetings-and-webinars/past-meetings/90th-annual-meeting-7-10-april-2021-baltimo, United States of America Webb Nicole; Krenn Viktoria; Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin;
90th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists Talk given at a conference Evolution of hominin pelvic sexual dimorphism 07.04.2021 virtual/worldwide, United States of America Webb Nicole; Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin; Krenn Viktoria;
10th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference Deciduous second molar morphological variation in the Baka pygmies, Cameroon 24.09.2020 virtual/worldwide, Germany Fornai Cinzia;
10th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference Upper Premolar Crown Variation in Great Apes 24.09.2020 virtual/worldwide, Germany Fornai Cinzia;
90th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists Talk given at a conference Which came first: the pelvis or the EGG? Energetics of Gestation and Growth versus Obstetrical Di-lemma 07.04.2020 virtual/wordwide, United States of America Webb Nicole; Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria; Häusler Martin;
FEMALE PELVIC FEATURES NEW DEVELOPMENTS IN OSTEOARCHAEOLOGY, MEDICINE AND EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY Talk given at a conference Why is human childbirth so complex? Implications from virtual reconstructions. Female pelvic features: new developments in osteoarchaeology, medicine and evolutionary biology 28.11.2019 Vienna, Austria Krenn Viktoria; Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin;
IRN meeting on hominin pelvic reconstruction Talk given at a conference The pelvic reconstruction of KSD-VP-1/1 22.10.2019 Marseille, France Krenn Viktoria; Webb Nicole; Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia;
IRN meeting on hominin pelvic reconstruction Talk given at a conference The reconstruction of the Stw 431 pelvis 22.10.2019 Marseille, France Webb Nicole; Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria;
IRN meeting on hominin pelvic reconstruction Talk given at a conference Virtual reconstrution of the MH2 (Australopithecus sediba) pelvis 22.10.2019 Marseille, France Häusler Martin; Krenn Viktoria; Fornai Cinzia; Webb Nicole;
Evolutionary Medicine: Biocultural Perspective Talk given at a conference On the evolutionary origin of the disorders affecting the masticatory system 07.10.2019 Frankreich, Germany Fornai Cinzia;
Evolutionary Medicine: Biocultural Perspective Talk given at a conference Evolutionary origin of musculoskeletal problems 07.10.2019 Frankfurt, Germany Häusler Martin;
Evolutionary Medicine: Biocultural Perspective Talk given at a conference Caesarean Section Prediction via Machine Learning: Predictive Tools and their Evolutionary Implications 07.10.2019 Frankfurt, Germany Webb Nicole;
Evolutionary Medicine: the Biocultural Perspective Talk given at a conference Pathological conditions and their evolutionary development 07.10.2019 Frankfurt, Germany Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole;
9th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference Australopithecus variability at Sterkfontein: evidence from the pelvic remains 19.09.2019 Liège, Belgium Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole; Krenn Viktoria;
9th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference Morphological variation and sexual dimorphism of the modern human sacrum 19.09.2019 Liège, Belgium Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin; Krenn Viktoria; Webb Nicole;
9th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference Reviving australopithecine birth: contribution of numerical simulation 19.09.2019 Liège, Belgium Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria; Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole;
9th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference KSD-VP-1/1: the “Big Man” just got bigger 19.09.2019 Liège, Belgium Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole; Krenn Viktoria; Fornai Cinzia;
9th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference The partial skeleton StW 431 provides new insights into the palaeobiology of Plio-Pleistocene hominins from Sterkfontein, South Africa 19.09.2019 Liège, Belgium Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia;
8th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference CT-scan data of juvenile pelvises: application for 3D fossil reconstruction 13.09.2019 Faro, Portugal Bonneau Noémi; Krenn Viktoria; Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia;
5th annual meeting of the International Society for Evolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference New Insights Into Caesarean Section Risk Prediction Using Machine Learning 13.08.2019 Zürich, Switzerland Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole;
5th annual meeting of the ISEMPH - International Society forEvolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference Evidence-based relationship of occlusion and temporomandibular disorders 12.08.2019 Zürich, Switzerland Fornai Cinzia;
5th annual meeting of the ISEMPH - International Society forEvolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference New Insights Into Caesarean Section Risk Prediction Using Machine Learning 12.08.2019 Zürich, Switzerland Webb Nicole; Häusler Martin;
5th annual meeting of the ISEMPH - International Society forEvolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference Does the ecological model challenge the obstetrical dilemma? Evidence from historical Swiss data 12.08.2019 Zürich, Switzerland Koepke Nikola; Webb Nicole; Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria;
5th annual meeting of the ISEMPH - International Society forEvolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference oes the ecological model challenge the obstetrical dilemma? Evidence from historical Swiss data 12.08.2019 Zürich, Switzerland Krenn Viktoria; Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole; Koepke Nikola; Fornai Cinzia;
5th annual meeting of the ISEMPH - International Society forEvolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference Why is human childbirth so complex? The obstetrical dilemma hypothesis revisited 12.08.2019 Zürich, Switzerland Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole; Krenn Viktoria;
5th annual meeting of the ISEMPH - International Society forEvolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference Evidence for adaptation to malaria in the human ancestor Australopithecus africanus, 2.6 million years ago 12.08.2019 Zürich, Switzerland Krenn Viktoria; Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin;
5th annual meeting of the ISEMPH - International Society forEvolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference Evidence for adaptation to malaria in the human ancestor Australopithecus africanus, 2.6 million years ago 12.08.2019 Zürich, Switzerland Krenn Viktoria; Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole; Fornai Cinzia;
7th Biennial Conference East African Association For Paleoanthropology And Paleontology (EAAPP) Talk given at a conference How KSD-VP-1/1 elucidates early Australopithecus pelvic morphology 01.08.2019 Nairobi, Kenya Krenn Viktoria; Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole;
7th Biennial Conference East African Association for Paleoanthropology and Paleontology (EAAPP) Talk given at a conference A. africanus, A. prometheus, or pre-Paranthropus? The case of the partial skeleton StW 431 01.08.2019 Nairobi, Kenya Häusler Martin; Krenn Viktoria; Fornai Cinzia; Webb Nicole;
7th Biennial Conference East African Association For Paleoanthropology And Paleontology (EAAPP) Talk given at a conference A new reconstruction of the StW 431 pelvis: implications for Australopithecus variability at Sterkfontein 01.08.2019 Nairobi, Kenya Krenn Viktoria; Webb Nicole; Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin;
The obstetrical dilemma and the evolution of human birth Talk given at a conference Two sides of the same coin: hominin pelvic morphology and the role of locomotion, phylogeny and body size 05.12.2018 Zürich, Switzerland Webb Nicole;
The obstetrical dilemma and the evolution of human birth Talk given at a conference The obstetrical dilemma – evidence from historical Swiss data 05.12.2018 Züirch, Switzerland Koepke Nikola;
The obstetrical dilemma and the evolution of human birth Talk given at a conference The obstetrical dilemma and the evolution of human birth - Introduction 05.12.2018 Zürich, Switzerland Häusler Martin;
FEMALE PELVIC FEATURES NEW DEVELOPMENTS IN OSTEOARCHAEOLOGY, MEDICINE AND EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY Talk given at a conference Why is human childbirth so complex? Implications from virtual reconstructions 28.11.2018 Wien, Austria Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria; Webb Nicole;
11th Annual International Conference of the Society for the Study of Childhood in the Past (SSCIP Talk given at a conference Sexual dimorphism of the human sacrum revisited 20.09.2018 Vienna, Austria Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin; Krenn Viktoria;
8th Annual Meeting of the European Society for the Study of Human Evolution Talk given at a conference Unexpectedly high morphological variability in the Australopithecus sacrum. Implications for sexual and taxonomic diversity 13.09.2018 Faro, Portugal Krenn Viktoria; Häusler Martin; Bonneau Noémi; Fornai Cinzia;
22nd European Meeting of the Palaeopathology Association Talk given at a conference Evidence for adaptation to malaria in a 2.58-million-year-old proximal Australopithecus africanus femur from Makapansgat, South Afric 27.08.2018 Zagreb, Croatia Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria;
4th annual meeting of the International Society for Evolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference The obstetrical dilemma – evidence from historical Swiss data. 01.08.2018 Park City, Utah, United States of America Koepke Nikola; Häusler Martin;
4th annual meeting of the ISEMPH - International Society forEvolution, Medicine and Public Health Talk given at a conference The obstetrical dilemma – evidence from historical Swiss data 01.08.2018 Park City, United States of America Häusler Martin; Koepke Nikola;
87th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Physical Anthropologists Talk given at a conference Morphological variation of the modern human sacrum with implications for early hominins 11.04.2018 Austin, Texas, United States of America Häusler Martin; Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria;
87th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Physical Anthropologists Talk given at a conference Levantine Late Pleistocene Homo heterogeneity as revealed by postcanine dentition 01.04.2018 Austin, Texas, United States of America Fornai Cinzia; Krenn Viktoria;


Self-organised

Title Date Place
On the evolutionary origin of the disorders affecting the masticatory system 07.10.2019 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
The obstetrical dilemma and the evolution of human birth 05.12.2018 Universität Zürich, Switzerland

Knowledge transfer events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Date Place Persons involved
Der aufrechte Gang: Verspannungen, Verschleiss, Geburtsgefahren Talk 12.11.2019 Universität Zürich, Switzerland Häusler Martin;
Evolutionary Medicine: The Biocultural Perspective Workshop 07.10.2019 Frankfurt, Germany Fornai Cinzia; Häusler Martin; Webb Nicole;
Lehrerfortbildung Kantonsschule Chur Talk 08.03.2018 Chur, Switzerland Häusler Martin;


Communication with the public

Communication Title Media Place Year
Media relations: radio, television Ancient hominins may have needed midwives to help deliver babies New Scientist International 2021
Print (books, brochures, leaflets) Evolutionäre und embryologische Aspekte weiblicher Urogenitalerkrankungen International 2021
New media (web, blogs, podcasts, news feeds etc.) Our Human Story ourhumanstory@e.newscientist.com International 2021
Media relations: print media, online media Lucy bringt ein Kind zur Welt Horizonte-Das Schweizer Forschungsmagazin Western Switzerland German-speaking Switzerland Italian-speaking Switzerland 2020
Media relations: print media, online media Media highlights 2019 UZH News International German-speaking Switzerland 2020
Media relations: radio, television Wie kommt es zum menschlichen Geburtsdilemma? Deutschlandfunk International 2020
Media relations: print media, online media a MYTH as spine reveals they had ‘backs as flat as modern humans’ the Sun International 2019
Media relations: print media, online media Anatomisch waren sich Neandertaler und der moderne Mensch sehr ähnlich NZZ German-speaking Switzerland 2019
Media relations: print media, online media E vero cue l'uomo di Neandertal non camminava curvo como si credeva? Gente International 2019
Talks/events/exhibitions Gelenksverschleiss, Rückenprobleme, schwierige Geburt: Erbe unserer Evolution? German-speaking Switzerland 2019
Media relations: print media, online media Neandertaler und moderner Mensch waren sich anatomisch sehr ähnlich Blick German-speaking Switzerland 2019
Media relations: print media, online media Neanderthals Walked Upright just like the Humans of Today University of Zurich » Press releases German-speaking Switzerland International 2019
Media relations: print media, online media Upstanding Neanderthals Natural History International 2019
Media relations: print media, online media Vorbildliche Haltung Terra Mater Magazin International 2019
Media relations: print media, online media At night at the museum, a Neanderthal skeleton comes out of the vault The Washington Post German-speaking Switzerland 2017

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
156299 Evolutionary origin of major musculoskeletal disorders of modern humans 01.10.2014 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

Obstructed labour is a leading cause of maternal and neonatal death and morbidity. It mainly results from a misfit between fetal head size and maternal pelvis. Traditionally attributed to a trade-off between selection for large-brained neonates and a biomechanically efficient, narrow pelvis for bipedal locomotion, this obstet-rical dilemma (OD) has recently been questioned in various ways. Yet, alternative hypotheses fail to explain the evolution of our complex birth mechanism, neurologically immature neonates, and our marked pelvic sexual dimorphism compared to other primates. Here, I propose 3 subprojects to advance our understanding of the OD: (1) I aim to restore a comprehensive evolutionary series of fossil hominin pelves in an objective way using state-of-the-art virtual image and ge-ometric morphometric methods since an evolutionary approach to the OD was so far complicated by often conflicting reconstructions of the same specimens. (2) I explore the hypothesis that pelvic sexual dimorphism increased during human evolution in concert with encephalization. Thus, our reconstructions will for the first time allow assessment of sexual pelvic dimorphism in early hominins while the degree of sexual dimorphism would provide an indirect measure for cephalo-pelvic disproportion. (3) Novel finite-element simulations of the birth process in fossil hominins allow taking into account the complex 3D shape of both the birth canal and the fetus as well as the dynamic nature of the birth process with ligamentous laxity, moulding of the fetal head and interference with the soft-tissue. Our innovative approach constitutes a major progress to previous studies that usually compared a few 2D measurements of the pelvis and fetal head. Assessing both the passageway and passenger in its full 3D shape is indispensable to predict the origins and evolutionary implications of obstructed labour. Further, our results are fundamental for future biomechanical analyses of hominin locomotion.
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