Drew Kitchen, Ph.D.

Director of Undergraduate Studies
Associate Professor

View Current CV

I am an anthropological geneticist with interests in human population history and the origins of human infectious disease. I use an evolutionary perspective to investigate the processes that have produced observed, modern distributions of human genetic and pathogen/parasite diversity. To do this, I primarily employ computational methods (e.g., phylogenetics, population genetics, and simulation) to the analysis of novel and publicly available genetic and cultural data.

My current research projects involve: 1) identifying the major historical events / determinants of Native American diversity, focusing on the original peopling event ~15 KYA and the post-Columbian population crash; 2) investigating the effect of human demographic history on the evolution of human pathogens and parasites, including the effect of agricultural lifestyles on the human microbiome; 3) understanding the molecular evolution and macro-evolutionary processes affecting pathogen genetic diversity; and 4) the application of evolutionary principles to infer the complex history of human cultural diversity, especially with regard to the construction of language phylogenies.

Research Interests

  • Genetics and Genomics
  • Human Evolution
  • Ancient Human Demography and Migration
  • Peopling of the Americas
  • Pathogen Evolution
  • Origins of Infectious Disease in Humans
  • Molecular Evolution
  • Macroevolution
  • Language Evolution

Courses Taught

  • ANTH:3325 Human Evolutionary Genetics
  • ANTH:1301 Human Origins
  • ANTH:3326 Infectious Disease and Human Evolution
  • ANTH:2320 Origins of Human Infectious Disease

Affiliations and Links

  • Member, Genetics Cluster
  • Member, Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Informatics
Research areas
  • Biological Anthropology
  • Medical Anthropology
Drew Kitchen
Ph.D., University of Florida, 2008

129 Macbride Hall (MH)
Iowa City, IA 52242
United States


24 and 26 Macbride Hall (MH)
Iowa City, IA 52242
United States