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College of Liberal Art & Sciences » Anthropology » Faculty
Teddi J Setzer
Teddi J Setzer, Lecturer
Research Area
Biological/Physical Anthropology
(313) 577-2935

Education:  PhD - University of South Florida, 2010

My primary research interests involve detecting malaria infections in human remains and ultimately examining the coevolution of humans, mosquitoes, and the malaria parasite. By understanding biocultural interactions between the vector, parasite, and host, novel ways of combating the disease may be identified and used in conjunction with biomedical approaches. In particular, I have been working on archaeological and prehistoric human skeletal collections on the island of Sardinia (Italy) in the Mediterranean to address this question. Other research interests include: forensic anthropology, skeletal biology, archaeological science, lithic use-wear, grave desecration, and the ritual use of human remains.

My research heavily involves the use of the scientific method. I observe, formulate hypotheses, make predictions, and perform experiments. Often, my research involves both qualitative and quantitative analysis. I also collaborate with scientists in the fields of chemistry, pathology, public health, molecular microbiology, and immunology. I strive to teach my students to be scientifically literate.

I am currently conducting research that addresses the detection of malaria in skeletal remains. This involves identifying and examining the skeletal remains of individuals who died from malaria. In addition I working on developing a protocol to identify the biocrystal hemozoin, which is a byproduct of the malaria parasite, in skeletal material.

I am assisting the City of Pontiac with the managing and re-interment of human remains that were found desecrated and commingled at the Oak Hill Cemetery. This project has provided multiple opportunities student involvement, from recovery to analysis.

Recent Publications:

2012* ”Use-wear experiments with obsidian: a comparison of the functionality and edge damage on tools made from two distinct lithic sources” Lithic Technology 37(1). In press. (T. J. Setzer)
2011 “Malaria in prehistoric Sardinia (Italy)? Using multiple lines of evidence to interpret bony responses observed on individuals from the Middle Bronze Age” American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Supplement 144(52):270. (Abstract). (T. J. Setzer, D. Sullivan, J. Pisciotta, and A. K. Tripathi)

2010* “Considering the source: the importance of raw material characterization and provenance in obsidian use-wear studies” Proceedings of the Vth International Conference Monte Arci Obsidian in the Mediterranean Advances in the studies of diffusion, production systems and their chronology Pau (Italy) June 27-29, 2008. (T. J. Setzer and R. H. Tykot)


ANT 2110 Introduction to Physical Anthropology
ANT 5140 Biology and Culture
ANT 5180 Forensic Anthropology
ANT 7650 Seminar in Physical Anthropology: Bioarchaeology
ANT 7995 Directed Study

Doing Anthropology In Detroit:

The Metro Detroit area has a very diverse population that is undergoing transitions involving issues that affect health, politics, economics, sustainability, and cultural heritage (to name a few), and Wayne State University is located in the center of it. Opportunities to collaborate within the university and surrounding communities are numerous. I have found that Detroit is a great place to be an anthropologist.

656 W. Kirby Street 3054 Faculty/Administration Building
Detroit, MI 48202
Phone: (313) 577-2935
Fax: (313) 577-5958
Website: clasweb.clas.wayne.edu/anthropology
Email: svillerot@wayne.edu