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Jonathan M.G. Perry, M.Sc., Ph.D.

Headshot of Jonathan M.G. Perry
  • Associate Professor of Functional Anatomy and Evolution

Research Interests

Miocene platyrrhine dietary adaptatons; Craniomandibular morphology of Eocene primates; Material and structural properties of primate foods; Evolution of feeding adaptations in primates; Anatomy and biomechanics of the masticatory system more


Dr. Jonathan Perry is an assistant professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. Perry serves as the program director for functional anatomy and evolution in the Center for Functional Anatomy and Evolution. His research focuses on the evolution of the chewing system of primates.

His team studies the anatomy of living primates—particularly lemurs and lorises—to understand the mechanics of their chewing.

Dr. Perry received his B.Sc. degree in paleontology from the University of Alberta. He earned his M.Sc. in systematics and evolution from the University of Alberta and his Ph.D. in biological anthropology and anatomy from Duke University. He completed postdoctoral training in the Department of Anatomical Sciences at Stony Brooke University. Dr. Perry joined the Johns Hopkins faculty in 2011.

Prior to joining Johns Hopkins, Dr. Perry was an assistant professor of anatomy at Midwestern University in Downer's Grove, Illinois.

He is a member of several professional organizations, including the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology and the American Association of Physical Anthropologists. His work has been recognized with several awards and grants, and his recent field projects have taken him to Argentina, Egypt and Madagascar. more


  • Associate Professor of Functional Anatomy and Evolution

Departments / Divisions

Centers & Institutes



  • Ph.D.; Duke University (North Carolina) (2008)
  • B.Sc.; University of Alberta (Canada) (1998)
  • M.Sc.; University of Alberta (Canada) (2001)

Additional Training

  • Duke University, Durham, NC, 2009, Research Affiliate

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Dr. Perry is interested in the link between skull form and diet. How do food properties influence skull morphology over evolutionary time and are there skull features we can use to reconstruct diet in extinct mammals?

In particular, he is excited about the context for the evolution of primates and curious about whether changes in diet prompted changes to the skull that characterize the first primates.

To address these interests, he has looked at links between the dimensions of the chewing muscles, bony skull features, and food properties in extant primates. He uses these links to reconstruct aspects of feeding and diet in early primates (e.g., adapids). He is interested in applying these techniques more broadly and generating dietary hypotheses for other fossil groups (e.g., the archaic primates, plesiadapiforms). This has been the main focus of his research.

In addition, he participates in several field projects to recover fossil mammals from localities across the world. He and his colleagues perform non-invasive, observational feeding experiments on captive primates to quantify feeding behavior. Finally, he collaborates on projects to quantify feeding energetics and to model tooth form in primates. All of this work is driven by a desire to understand the ways in which our earliest primate ancestors related to their environment.


Lab Website: Jonathan M.G. Perry Lab

Selected Publications

  1. Hartstone-Rose A, Perry JMG, Morrow CJ. "Bite force estimation and the fiber architecture of felid masticatory muscles." Anat Rec (Hoboken). 2012 Aug;295(8):1336-51. doi: 10.1002/ar.22518. Epub 2012 Jun 15.
  2. Perry JMG, Hartstone-Rose A, Logan RL. "The jaw adductor resultant and estimated bite force in primates." Anat Res Int. 2011;2011:929848. doi: 10.1155/2011/929848. Epub 2011 Jul 24.
  3. Muchlinski MN, Perry JMG. "Anatomical correlates to nectar-feeding among the strepsirrhines of Madagascar: implications for interpreting the fossil record." Anat Res Int. 2011;2011:378431. doi: 10.1155/2011/378431. Epub 2011 Oct 17.
  4. Hartstone-Rose A, Perry JMG. "Intraspecific variation in maximum ingested food size and body mass in Varecia rubra and Propithecus coquereli." Anat Res Int. 2011;2011:831943. doi: 10.1155/2011/831943. Epub 2011 May 17.
  5. Perry JMG, Hartstone-Rose A, Wall CE. "The jaw adductors of strepsirrhines in relation to body size, diet, and ingested food size." Anat Rec (Hoboken). 2011 Apr;294(4):712-28. doi: 10.1002/ar.21354. Epub 2011 Mar 1.

Contact for Research Inquiries

1830 E. Monument Street
Room 303
Baltimore, MD 21205 map
Phone: 410-955-7034

Email me

Academic Affiliations & Courses

Graduate Program Affiliation

Functional Anatomy & Evolution

Activities & Honors



  • American Association of Anatomists, 2005
  • American Association of Physical Anthropologists, 2002
  • Sigma Xi, 2007
  • Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, 1998

Professional Activities

  • Admissions Committee, Duke University, 2007
  • Course Director for Introduction to Biological Anthropology, Duke University, 2005
  • Scholarship Committee, Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • University Library Committee, Biomedical Sciences Master’s Program

Videos & Media

Recent News Articles and Media Coverage

Jonathan Perry on Studying Primate Chewing, Fundamentals.

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