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Rebecca Stumpf

Profile picture for Rebecca Stumpf

Contact Information

Department of Anthropology
607 S Mathews Ave.
M/C 148
Urbana, IL 61801


Research Interests

Adolescent Development
Biological Anthropology
Microbe-host interactions
Ape Social Behavior and Endocrinology
Comparative Sexuality and Reproduction
Evolution of mating systems
Sexual Selection
The Role of Microbes on Preterm Birth
Evolutionary mechanisms
Primate evolution


2004 Stony Brook University, NY Doctor of Philosophy, Interdepartmental Doctoral Program in Anthropological Sciences
1998 Stony Brook University, NY Masters Degree, Anthropological Sciences
1990 Oberlin College, Oberlin, OH. Bachelors Degree


2014-2017 NSF BCS Female Sociality, Dispersal, and Comparative Microbial Community Composition in wild chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). (PI) K. Langergraber (co-PI)
2009-2017 National Science Foundation Human Origins Moving in New Directions (HOMINID). “Microbes, diet, and hominin evolution: comparative and metagenomic approaches.” PI: S Leigh; Co-PIs: RM Stumpf, B White, K Nelson, A Salyers
2011-2014 National Institute of Health. Wilson, BA, Stumpf, RM, Yildirim, S., "Dynamics of Normal Pigtailed Macaque Vaginal and Intestinal Microbiota," University of Washington subaward.
2012-2014 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Department. “Sexually transmitted diseases and African ape conservation.” PIs: J. Rushmore, S. Altizer, and R.M. Stumpf.
2009-2011 Leakey Foundation. “Social and Sexual Development in Adolescent Chimpanzees of Kanyawara.” PI
2013-2014 University of Illinois Research Board. PI. RM Stumpf “Sexual conflict in wild chimpanzees”
2008-2013 National Science Foundation. "Comparative Primate Microbial Ecology." PI: RM Stumpf, Co-PIs: A Salyers, S Leigh, B Wilson
2010-2011 US Fish and Wildlife Department. “Close-contact pathogens, sexually transmitted diseases, and African ape conservation.” PIs: J Rushmore, S Altizer, and RM Stumpf
2008-2011 Wenner Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research. "Female Social and Sexual Development in Wild Chimpanzees." PI
2008-2011 National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant. “The Effects of Deforestation on Reproductive Fitness in Female Red Colobus (Piliocolobus tephrosceles) in Kibale National Park, Uganda.” K Milich, RM Stumpf
2008-2009 University of Illinois, Inclusive Illinois. “Study of classroom climate in relation to issues of diversity.” J Keller, RM Stumpf and B Farnell
2008-2009 Center for Advanced Study Fellowship
2006-2007 Critical Research Initiatives Grant. "Evolutionary Medicine and Women’s Sexual Health." Co-PI
1998-2001 National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant. "Reproductive Strategies of Female West African Chimpanzees."

Awards and Honors

2011 Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, Department of Anthropology
2016 Promoted to Full Professor with Distinction
2016 University Scholar
2016-2017 Guggenheim Fellow
2010-2011 Irwin C. Gunsalus Scholar
2008-2009 Center for Advanced Study Fellowship
2004 Harvard University Certificate of Distinction in Teaching
2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 Teachers Ranked as Excellent by their Students, Center for Teaching Excellence, University of Illinois
2005 Arnold O. Beckman Research Award
2004 President's Award for Outstanding Dissertation, SUNY - Stony Brook

Courses Taught

ANTH 102: Human Origins and Culture
ANTH 143/HDFS 143: Biology of Human Behavior
ANTH 243: The Natural History and Social Behavior of the Great Apes
ANTH 258/GWS 258: Sex in Nature and Culture
ANTH 343: The Biology and Behavior of Women
ANTH 443/IB 428: Primate Form and Behavior
ANTH 437: Primate Behavioral Endocrinology
ANTH 515RS: Graduate Seminar - Sexual Selection
ANTH 515RS: Graduate Seminar - Primate Field Methods
ANTH 515RS: Graduate Seminar - The Evolution of Human Sexuality and Behavior
499 Primate Lab Research

Additional Campus Affiliations

Professor, Anthropology
Professor, Biomedical and Translational Sciences
Professor, Women & Gender in Global Perspectives
Professor, Center for Global Studies
Professor, Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology
Professor, Center for African Studies

Recent Publications

Asangba, A. E., Mugisha, L., Rukundo, J., Lewis, R. J., Halajian, A., Cortés-Ortiz, L., Junge, R. E., Irwin, M. T., Karlson, J., Perkin, A., Watsa, M., Erkenswick, G., Bales, K. L., Patton, D. L., Jasinska, A. J., Fernandez-Duque, E., Leigh, S. R., & Stumpf, R. M. (2022). Large Comparative Analyses of Primate Body Site Microbiomes Indicate that the Oral Microbiome Is Unique among All Body Sites and Conserved among Nonhuman Primates. Microbiology Spectrum, 10(3).

Barelli, C., Albanese, D., Stumpf, R. M., Asangba, A., Donati, C., Rovero, F., & Hauffe, H. C. (2020). The gut microbiota communities of wild arboreal and ground-feeding tropical primates are affected differently by habitat disturbance. mSystems, 5(3), Article e00061-20.

Mann, A. E., Mazel, F., Lemay, M. A., Morien, E., Billy, V., Kowalewski, M., Di Fiore, A., Link, A., Goldberg, T. L., Tecot, S., Baden, A. L., Gomez, A., Sauther, M. L., Cuozzo, F. P., Rice, G. A. O., Dominy, N. J., Stumpf, R., Lewis, R. J., Swedell, L., ... Wegener Parfrey, L. (2020). Biodiversity of protists and nematodes in the wild nonhuman primate gut. ISME Journal, 14(2), 609-622.

Sharma, A. K., Petrzelkova, K., Pafco, B., Robinson, C. A. J., Fuh, T., Wilson, B. A., Stumpf, R. M., Torralba, M. G., Blekhman, R., White, B., Nelson, K. E., Leigh, S. R., & Gomez, A. (2020). Traditional human populations and nonhuman primates show parallel gut microbiome adaptations to analogous ecological conditions. mSystems, 5(6), Article e00815-20.

Amato, K. R., Mallott, E. K., McDonald, D., Dominy, N. J., Goldberg, T., Lambert, J. E., Swedell, L., Metcalf, J. L., Gomez, A., Britton, G. A. O., Stumpf, R. M., Leigh, S. R., & Knight, R. (2019). Convergence of human and Old World monkey gut microbiomes demonstrates the importance of human ecology over phylogeny. Genome biology, 20(1), Article 201.

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