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Massey Laboratory

Morphology, Ontogeny & Evolution

Welcome to the Massey Lab

Our lab works with extinct and extant primate species to investigate the interplay between ontogeny and evolution.

We're part of the Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute, and a member of the Development & Stem Cells, program and the Department of Anatomy and Developmental Biology.

Dr Jason Massey

My global research connections, partners and funding can be viewed on my Monash Research Profile.

If you are a student interested in doing research in our lab, visit Supervisor Connect.

Click the links below to connect with me on Twitter, ORCID, Google Scholar and LinkedIn.

Our research

Slight alterations in a population’s ontogeny can lead to divergent adult morphologies potentially leading to evolutionary change. Our lab primarily focuses on questions related to ontogenetic variation and evolvability through the use of three-dimensional scanning technology, landmark-based geometric morphometrics, and multivariate statistical analyses. We work with skeletal remains of both extant (gorillas and chimpanzees from ongoing behavioural field sites) and extinct primates (2-million-year-old baboons from Drimolen, South Africa).

  • Ontogenetic Variation and Evolvability

    Population-level ontogenetic variation has been studied extensively in modern humans and more recently in non-human primates. But how easy is it to change an ontogenetic trajectory, and what are the resulting consequences of doing so?

  • Primate Evolution

    The non-human primate community living and interacting with multiple human species at the Drimolen fossil site provides an important piece to the environmental puzzle detailing how human ancestors lived and evolved.

  • Human Anatomical Variation

    Human variation is not just academically interesting, it can be vitally important in clinical and surgical settings. Understanding patterns of human variation can inform surgical treatments.

Lab members

We are committed to excellence in research.


View our chosen highlighted key publications.

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We want to share our research discoveries & successes with you.

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Join Our Lab

We're always interested in collaborating with bright and motivated researchers, clinicians and industry. Whether you want to research, study or partner with us to accelerate our discoveries, find out about the work we do.

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