Welcome to the NAU Anthropology PaleoDiet Laboratory


You are what you eat and drink! In the NAU Paleodiet Laboratory, we use biogeochemistry methods to interrogate the role of diet, climate, and migration on past and modern human populations. This chemical wet lab, with a fully functional fume hood, prepares bone, teeth, plants, and hair for stable isotope analysis of carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen. These values in biological tissues correlate to the diet ingested and the location and climate one lived in. Research is focused on ancient Peruvian diet and migration patterns and modern hair studies. The lab has an ongoing commitment to undergraduate and graduate student training in research methods. 

Principal Investigator(s)

Dr. Kellner is a bioarchaeologist focusing on the biocultural effects of social interaction, especially how local communities and states are affected by each other.

Get Involved!

Undergraduate and graduate laboratory internships are available by semester and academic year. No experience necessary, but a background in chemistry and/or biological anthropology/archaeology are helpful.


Research takes place in NAU Building 49 (Room 6).


Research operates year-round.




The project involves regular collaboration with the NAU Colorado Plateau Stable Isotope Laboratory; New Mexico State University Geological Sciences Thermal Ionization Mass Spectrometry Laboratory (PI: Frank Ramos, PhD); and geochemist Michael Ketterer, PhD at Metropolitan State University, Denver, Colorado.


Partial support for this research program comes from the NAU Hooper Undergraduate Research Award, NAU Undergraduate Research Mentorship Award, NAU Interns to Scholars, NAU Faculty Grant Program, National Science Foundation.