Indiana State University Newsroom

Primate specialist to speak at ISU about ape reproduction

February 19, 2010

Primatologist Melissa Emery Thompson will visit Indiana State University Tuesday to discuss her research in the area of primate reproduction strategies.

She is visiting Indiana State as the Women in Science speaker as part of the 2010 Biology Department Seminar Series "From Molecules to Ecosystems."

Thompson is a research assistant professor in the department of anthropology at the University of New Mexico, where she co-founded a hominoid reproductive laboratory to
to foster collaborative and comparative studies of great ape and human physiology.

This includes studies of wild and captive orangutans, wild bonobos, and humans in the U.S. and the Tsimane population of Bolivia.

Her talk will focus on the results of research conducted with female apes and chimpanzees.

The research points to significant and pervasive effects of energy availability on ovarian hormone production and reproductive success in chimpanzees, closely paralleling the effects documented in human females.

Thompson has conducted research on chimpanzees at the Kibale National Park, the Budongo Forest Reserve, and the Ngamba Island Sanctuary in Uganda, and in the Gombe National Park in Tanzania.

The session will start at 4p.m. in the Science building, Room 012. Cookies will be served at 3:30 p.m.

For more information visit,

Contact: Rusty Gonser, assistant professor of biology, Indiana State University, 812- 237-2395 or

Writer: Kendra Thomas, media relations intern, Office of Communications and Marketing, or 812-237-3773