Alemseged Lab


Professor Zeray Alemseged is a paleoanthropologist in the Department of Organismal Biology and Anatomy at the University of Chicago. His research interests include human evolution and the exploration of the factors that shaped the evolution of humans and extinct ancestral species.

Zeresanay Alemseged

Principal Investigator & Donald N. Pritzker Professor

Prof. Alemseged undertakes extensive fieldwork and employs cutting-edge imaging techniques to investigate the evolutionary process and mechanisms that led to the emergence of Homo sapiens. He explores both the biological and cultural transformations that occurred over the past 6 millions years since humans diverged from the apes.

See our Research

Zeray and his team have been publishing research articles related to human paleontology and paleoenvironments for nearly three decades.

In the Alemseged Lab

Note: Our website is currently undergoing remodeling. Please check back in the coming weeks for a fully operational experience!

We combine intensive field work with cutting edge technology to better understand human evolution.


Our teams investigate several sites in East Africa, including Dikika and Mille-Longya.

Digital Imaging

We imploy digital imaging to address questions that cannot be answered macroscopically. This includes synchroton and mini-CT scanning. We also use 3D scanning to render fossils into digital specimens for a variety of purposes.

Virtual Anthropology

Digital imaging allows us to use advanced software to plot landmarks, reconstruct missing aspects, and print specimens for qualitative examination, teaching, and sharing.

Latest Lab News

3D Technology & EYH

3D Technology & EYH

Public outreach is part of our lab's atmosphere, and this quarter our members have volunteered to run a workshop at Expanding Your Horizons (EYH), an effort to interest middle school girls in STEM fields now in its tenth year here in Chicago. To prepare for the...

Alemseged Lab & Dr. Mulugeta Alene

Alemseged Lab & Dr. Mulugeta Alene

The Alemseged Lab team met for lunch and enjoyed the return of sunnier weather here in Chicago. We also welcome Dr. Mulugeta Alene, a Senior Geologist and Assistant Professor from Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. "Mulu" is working with Zeray through The Neubauer...

Pope names two prominent US-based experts to Vatican science academy

Pope names two prominent US-based experts to Vatican science academy

Along with neurologist and Nobel Prize laureate Stanley Prusiner and theologian and secretary of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America Emilce Cuda, Zeresenay Alemseged has been appointed by the Pope to be a member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. See more...

With over 100 co-authors and over 2,000 citations,
research done at the Alemseged Lab is on-going and deliberate.

Find an article

Research at our lab strives to better understand our evolutionary past, physically and environmentally.


Zeray Alemseged

An impressive research and service history highlights his engagement with both past and present.

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