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Dennis O'Rourke (KU – PhD in Anthropology, emphasis in genetics) - Foundation Distinguished Professor of Anthropology at the University of Kansas, Director of the KU ancient DNA Laboratory, Associate Director of the Laboratories of Biological Anthropology, and Professor Emeritus University of Utah. My research focuses on the use of molecular genetic methods to address long-standing questions in prehistory. My students and collaborators have conducted fieldwork and research projects in Mexico, the Caribbean, the US Southwest and California, and the North American arctic. Most recently, my group has focused attention on ancient DNA methods to investigate the colonization and dispersal of the North American arctic, and how this informs us about the earlier initial colonization of the Western Hemisphere. Utilizing genomic analyses of both human and archaeofaunal and archaeobotanical materials, my research interests and efforts increasingly are at the intersection of anthropological genetics, bioarchaeology, and paleoecology.

Selected Publications

O'Rourke, D. (2010). South From Alaska: A Pilot aDNA Study of Genetic History on the Alaska Peninsula and Eastern Aleutians. Human Biology - Volume 82.
O'Rourke, D. (2010). Genes across Beringia: A Physical Anthropological Perspective on the Dené-Yeniseian Hypothesis. Anthropological Papers of the University of Alaska (New Series). Special Issue: The Dené-Yeniseian Hypothesis.
O'Rourke, D. (2007). The Thule expansion: Rejecting population histories using mtDNA data and computer simulation. Amer. J. Phys. Anthrop. - Issue 2 | Volume 134.
O'Rourke, D. (2007). Ancient DNA and its application to reconstruction of human evolution and population history. Anthropological Genetics: Theory, Methods & Applications. Cambridge University Press.
O'Rourke, D. (2006). A Radiometric Evaluation of Hrdlicka’s Aleutian Replacement Hypothesis: Population Continuity and Morphological Change. Current Anthropology - Issue 3 | Volume 47.
O'Rourke, D. (2006). Classical marker variation in Native North Americans. Handbook of North American Indians. Vol. 3, Environment, Origins and Population. Smithsonian Institution.
O'Rourke, D. (2005). The Consent Process and aDNA Research: Contrasting Approaches in Northern North America. Biological Anthropology and Ethics. State University of New York Press.
O'Rourke, D. (2003). Anthropological Genetics in the Genomic Era: A Look Back and Ahead. American Anthropologist - Issue 1 | Volume 105.
O'Rourke, D. (2003). Mitochondrial analyses of Dorset, Thule, Sadlermiut, and Aleut skeletal samples from the prehistoric North American Arctic. Mummies in a New Millenium. Proceedings of the 4th World Congress on Mummy Studies. Danish Polar Center.
O'Rourke, D. (2000). Spatial and Temporal Stability of mtDNA Haplogroup Frequencies in Native North America. Human Biology - Issue 1 | Volume 72.
O'Rourke, D. (2000). The Context of Maternal Lineages in the Greater Southwest. Amer. J. Phys. Anthrop. - Issue 1 | Volume 113.
O'Rourke, D. (2000). Human Biology: An Evolutionary & Biocultural Perspective. Wiley-Liss, Inc.
O'Rourke, D. (1999). Molecular genetic variation in prehistoric inhabitants of the Eastern Great Basin. Understanding Prehistoric Lifeways in the Great Basin Wetlands: Bioarchaeological Reconstruction and Interpretation.
O'Rourke, D. (1996). Ancient DNA analysis of Fremont Amerindians of the Great Salt Lake Wetlands. Amer. J. Phys. Anthrop. - Issue 4 | Volume 99.
O'Rourke, D. (1996). Ancient DNA: A review of methods, progress, and perspectives. Amer. J. Hum. Biol. - Issue 5 | Volume 8.
O'Rourke, D. (1995). Sib-based detection of QTLs. Genetic Epidemiology - Issue 6 | Volume 12.
O'Rourke, D. (1994). Biochemical heterozygosity and morphologic variation in a colony of Papio hamadryas hamadryas baboons. Evolution - Issue 4 | Volume 48.
O'Rourke, D. (1992). Patterns of genetic variation in Native America. Human Biology - Issue 3 | Volume 64.
O'Rourke, D. (1989). DNA preservation in Precolumbian remains from the American Southwest. Human Evolution - Issue 4 | Volume 4.
O'Rourke, D. (1989). Spatial analysis and gene frequency maps of native North American populations. Collegium Antropologicum - Issue 1 | Volume 13.
O'Rourke, D. (1987). Genetics of primate lymphomas in a baboon (Papio hamadryas) colony of Sukhumi, U.S.S.R. Genetica - Volume 73.
O'Rourke, D. (1986). Geographical distribution of consanguinity in Europe. Ann. Hum. Biol. - Issue 4 | Volume 13.
O'Rourke, D. (1986). Patterns and correlates of genetic variation in South Amerindians. Ann. Hum. Biol. - Issue 1 | Volume 13.
O'Rourke, D. (1985). Genetic variation in North Amerindian populations: Association with sociocultural complexity. Amer. J. Phys. Anthrop. - Issue 3 | Volume 67.
O'Rourke, D. (1985). Genetic variation in North Amerindian populations: Covariance with climate. Amer. J. Phys. Anthrop. - Issue 3 | Volume 67.
O'Rourke, D. (1985). Genetic variation in North Amerindian populations: The geography of gene frequencies. Amer. J. Phys. Anthrop. - Issue 3 | Volume 67.
O'Rourke, D. (1984). Inbreeding, heterozygosity and lymphoma risk among the baboons (Papio hamadryas) of Sukhumi, U.S.S.R. Amer. J. Primat. - Volume 6.
O'Rourke, D. (1984). Dental variation in Black Carib populations. Current Developments in Anthropological Genetics, Vol. 3. Black Caribs: A Case Study in Biocultural Adaptation, Chapter 10. Plenum.
O'Rourke, D. (1983). The genetics of manic-depressive illness. Amer. J. Phys. Anthrop. - Issue 1 | Volume 62.
O'Rourke, D. (1983). Genetics, Evolution and Disease. Alan R. Liss, Inc.
O'Rourke, D. (1982). Ascertainment bias for non-twin relatives in twin proband studies. Hum. Hered. - Volume 32.
O'Rourke, D. (1982). Power of the affected sib pair method to detect disease susceptibility loci of small effect: An application to multiple sclerosis. Amer. J. Med. Genet. - Volume 12.
O'Rourke, D. (1982). Refutation of the general single locus model for the etiology of schizophrenia. Amer. J. Hum. Genet. - Issue 4 | Volume 34.
O'Rourke, D. (1982). Primate social organization, ecology and genetic variation. Current Developments in Anthropological Genetics, Vol. 2. Ecology and Population Structure, Ch. 1. Plenum.
O'Rourke, D. (1980). Odontometric microdifferentiation of transplanted Mexican Indian populations: Cuanalan and Saltillo. Amer. J. Phys. Anthrop. - Issue 3 | Volume 52.
O'Rourke, D. (1976). Odontometric analysis of four Tlaxcaltecan communities. The Tlaxcaltecans: Prehistory, Demography, Morphology and Genetics, Chapter 9. KU Printing Service.