I am a biological anthropologist interested in the evolutionary genetics, reproductive biology, and demography of humans and non-human primates.
The major topic of my research is the ecology and evolution of patterns of growth, reproduction, and mortality in primates. This integrates analysis of demographic variables that directly influence lifetime reproductive success, related behavioral traits such as maternal care and infant temperament, physiological indices of maternal investment through lactation, and the anatomy of growing and adult individuals. This is carried out at two complementary levels exploiting variation among individual population members and variation among the diversity of living primate species.
Quantitative Genetics of Primate Populations
I apply statistical methods developed by animal breeders and medical geneticists to use pedigrees of primate populations for measuring genetic and environmental contributions to the observable variation in primate life history, anatomical, physiological, and behavior traits. These results describe life history evolution at the level of microevolutionary change and can be used directly to test theoretical models of growth, aging, reproductive effort, parental investment, and parent-offspring conflict. Current research uses captive squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis) and captive or free-ranging rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta). I've also studied humans some.
Comparative Biology of Primate Species
Identifying trait associations across primate species is a classic method for generating and initially testing hypotheses about primate life histories. These interspecific differences reflect the accumulated effects of many generations of microevolution within primate populations. Recent research has dealt with the sequence of events in human and chimpanzee anatomical development and the dietary correlates of differences in primate milk composition.
- Introduction to Biological Anthropology, Anthropology 2050/2051
- Primate Anatomy & Evolution, Anthropology 2500
- Human Biology & Life History, Anthropology 3540
- Human Biological Variation, Anthropology 4540/7540
- Anthropological Genetics, Anthropology 4885/7885
- Graduate Seminars, Anthropology 8587
Looking to get involved in research?
I encourage students looking for a place to do master’s or doctoral research to send me an exploratory email telling me everything relevant about their background (e.g. past education, research interests and experiences, career goals, GPA, GRE scores). This is the best way to find out if Mizzou would be a good place for your graduate studies. Be certain you have an to answer the big question you should be asking yourself: “Why do I want to go to grad school?”.
Undergraduate students have also participated in my research. Course credit can be obtained from these projects through enrollment in: Research Skills (Anthropology 2950), Undergraduate Research (Anthropology 4950), and Honors Research (Anthropology 4950H, eligible for departmental honors).
A sampling of publications from the last few years is given below. My CV has embedded links to all publications. You can also check my Google Scholar citations or ORCID listing. A * by the name indicates an MU anthropology graduate student.
- Keith*, M.H, Blomquist, G.E., Flinn, M.V. (2019) Anthropometric heritability and child growth in a Caribbean village: A quantitative genetic analysis of longitudinal height, weight, and body mass index in Bwa Mawego, Dominica. American Journal of Physical Anthropology. doi:10.1002/ajpa.23924
- Blomquist, G.E. (2019). Unpacking the heritability of body mass index and other ratios. American Journal of Human Biology. e23289. doi: 10.1002/ajhb.23289
- Munds*, R.A., Titus, C.L., Eggert, L. S., & Blomquist, G. E. (2018). Using a multi-gene approach to infer the complicated phylogeny and evolutionary history of lorises (Order Primates: Family Lorisidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 127, 556-567. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2018.05.025
- Munds*, R. A., Dunn, R. H., & Blomquist, G. E. (2018). Multivariate craniodental allometry of tarsiers. International Journal of Primatology, 39, 52-268. doi:10.1007/s10764-018-0034-x
- Ahsan*, M. H., & Blomquist, G. E. (2015). Modeling variation in early life mortality in the western lowland gorilla: Genetic, maternal, and other effects. American Journal of Primatology, 77, 666-678. doi:10.1002/ajp.22389
- Blomquist, G. E., & Brent, L. J. N. (2014). Applying quantitative genetics methods to primate social behavior. International Journal of Primatology, 35, 108–128. doi:10.1007/s10764-013-9709-5
Note: The Americanized pronunciation of my Swedish surname is "bloom"-quist, but there is just a single "o" in the name. Blomquist sounds like this.