Tom Rein, Ph.D.

Areas of Interest


2010 New York University, New York, NY.
2007 New York University, New York, NY
2006 New York University, New York, NY.
2003 Columbia University, New York, NY
B.A. in the Department of Anthropology

Research Projects

I am interested in studying the interplay between different influences on skeletal shape variation including locomotor function, phylogeny, and ontogeny. I apply the work I do on extant anthropoid skeletal morphology to understanding the primate fossil record (with emphasis on hominin evolution). I use phylogenetically informed comparative methods, geometric morphometrics, and virtual anthropology techniques in my research. My current research projects include:

Covariation in External and Internal Limb Shape: Exploration of external and internal long bone shape variation and its relationship to limb activity in anthropoids. My current research on this topic focuses on femoral shape and its relationship to bipedal locomotion during hominin evolution.

Function, Phylogeny, and Skeletal Shape Variation: Examination of shape differences in different aspects of the postcranium with implications for hominin evolution. My recent work in this area has examined shape variation in the shoulder, elbow, hand, and foot. I am applying this research to interpreting skeletal morphology of Miocene catarrhines and Plio-Pleistocene hominins.


Rein TR, Harvati K. 2013. Exploring third metacarpal capitate facet shape in early hominins. The Anatomical Record, 296: 240-249.

Rein TR, McCarty LA. 2012. Metacarpophalangeal joint orientation in anthropoid manual phalanges. The Anatomical Record, 295: 2057-2068.

Rein TR. 2011. The correspondence between proximal phalanx morphology and locomotion: Implications for inferring the locomotor behavior of fossil catarrhines. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 146(3): 435-445.

Rein TR, Harrison T, Zollikofer CPE. 2011. Skeletal correlates of quadrupedalism and climbing in the anthropoid forelimb: Implications for inferring locomotion in Miocene catarrhines. Journal of Human Evolution, 61(5): 564-574.

Rein TR. 2008. Human Origins. In: Rubel D (ed). The Bedside Baccalaureate. New York: Sterling Publishing Company. pp. 203, 208, 213, 218, 223, 228, 233, 238, 243, 248, 253, 258, 263, 268, 273, 278, 283, 288.

Sherwood CC, Cranfield MR, Mehlman PT, Lilly AA, Garbe J, Whittier C, Nutter F, Rein TR, Bruner HJ, Holloway RL, Cheuk Tang Y, Naidich TP, Delman BN, Steklis HD, Erwin JM, Hof PR. 2004. Brain structure variation in great apes, with attention to the mountain gorilla (Gorilla beringei beringei). American Journal of Primatology, 63(3): 49-164.

Published Abstracts and Conference Presentations:

Harvati K, Darlas A, Bailey S, Rein TR, El Zataatari S, Fiorenza L, Kullmer O, Psathi E. 2012. New Neanderthal remains from Kalamakia cave, Mani penisula, Southern Greece. ESHE Conference. Bordeaux, France.

Rein TR, Harvati K. Shape exploration of the third metacarpal capitate facet: implications for early hominin morphology. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, S54:246.

Rein TR. 2010. The interplay between function and phylogeny in the manifestation of phalangeal morphology. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, S141:197.

Rein TR, Fellmann C, Inouye SE. 2009. The ontogeny of humeral torsion and locomotor behavior in African apes: implications for interpreting the hominoid fossil record. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, S48:220.

Fellmann CD, Rein TR. 2009. A three-dimensional examination of the ontogeny of humeral torsion in African apes. Poster presented at the New York Consortium in Evolutionary Primatology Conference: "Darwin's Legacy: Early Human Evolution in Africa," American Museum of Natural History.

Rein TR, Harrison T. 2007. Quantifying the angle of orientation of the metatarsophalangeal joint surface of proximal phalanges in extant primates. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, S44:197.

Sherwood CC, Cranfield MR, Mehlman PT, Lilly AA, Garbe J Lowenstine LJ, Rein TR, Holloway RL, Tang CY, Erwim JM, Whittier C, Nutter F, Hof, PR. 2003. Comparative brain anatomy of mountain gorillas (Gorilla gorilla beringei). American Journal of Primatology, 60(S1):121-122.