Skull: Function – New Directions

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The human skull is a highly integrated structure, resulting from an interplay of multifunctional anatomy, structural adaptations, and evolution. Significant advances have been made on many fronts, such as bone material properties, the functional roles of joints including craniofacial sutures and the temporomandibular joint, the addition of new genetic data to inform the Masticatory-Functional hypothesis, and the impact of agriculture and contemporary lifestyles on dietary behavior and oral health, and so on. This chapter reviews these new research directions along with recent investigative approaches, and important concepts and findings on skull form and function that capture rapid developments that will broaden and deepen future studies in both theoretical and practical senses. Nanoindentation is an engineering technique during which a hard-tipped material with known material properties and a known force is pressed into the bone surface, usually cortical bone, to assess the stiffness and hardness of the bone.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationA Companion to Biological Anthropology, Second Edition
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781119828075
ISBN (Print)9781119828044
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2023


  • cortical bone
  • dietary behavior
  • human skull
  • masticatory-functional hypothesis
  • multifunctional anatomy
  • nanoindentation
  • temporomandibular joint


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