Nina Jablonski

Evan Pugh University Professor of Anthropology

Nina Jablonski

Research Summary

Evolutionary history of Old World primates, including humans. Evolution of human skin and skin pigmentation, and the relationship between skin pigmentation and vitamin D production.


Publication Tags

Color Skin Pigmentation Sexual Selection Vitamin D Vocalization Ultraviolet Rays Ultraviolet Radiation Protective Skin (Animal) History Multiple Sclerosis Testosterone Hominidae Health Animals Skin Pigmentation Hormones Primates Hydrocortisone Eumelanin Radiation Body Temperature Regulation Micrornas Skin Diseases

Most Recent Papers

Distribution of variants in multiple vitamin D-related loci (DHCR7/NADSYN1, GC, CYP2R1, CYP11A1, CYP24A1, VDR, RXRα and RXRγ) vary between European, East-Asian and Sub-Saharan African-ancestry populations

Patrice Jones, Mark Lucock, G Chaplin, Nina Jablonski, Martin Veysey, Christopher Scarlett, Emma Beckett, Genes and Nutrition

Caught between “Light skin is beautiful and tanned skin is attractive”: How bicultural socialization shapes attitudes toward skin color aesthetics

Hsin Chen, Nina Jablonski, G Chick, C Yarnal, Asian American Journal of Psychology on p. 326–340

Examining colorism and associated behaviors among African-American female college students

Hsin-Yu Chen, G Chick, C Yarnal, Nina Jablonski,

Tapirus yunnanensis from Shuitangba, a terminal Miocene hominoid site in Zhaotong, Yunnan Province of China

Xueping Ji, Haowen Tong, Nina Jablonski, Denise Su, J.O.R. Ebbestad, C.W. Liu, T.S. Yu, Vertebrata PalAsiatica

Youths learning with a genetics and genealogy approach: Scientific and personal engagement in summer camp

H Zimmerman, J.L. Weible, Elizabeth Wright, C. Maggiore, Nina Jablonski,

Skin cancer, photoprotection and skin of color

Ophelia Dadzie, Nina Jablonski, Mahendra Mahalingam, Alain Dupuy, Antoine Petit, Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology on p. 2

New materials of the Late Miocene Muntiacus from Zhaotong hominoid site in southern China

Wei Dong, Nina Jablonski, Denise Su, W.Q. Liu, Vertebrata PalAsiatica

Exploring the role of acculturation in attitudes toward skin color aesthetics and associated behaviors

Hsin-Yu Chen, Nina Jablonski, G Chick, C Yarnal,

Evolution of the human Ah receptor conferred desensitization to smoke-derived toxicants

G Perdew, Nina Jablonski, Molecular Biology and Evolution on p. 2648-58

Skin color: A function of sun

Nina Jablonski, on p. 2

Most-Cited Papers

The biology of color

Innes C. Cuthill, William L. Allen, Kevin Arbuckle, Barbara Caspers, George Chaplin, Mark E. Hauber, Geoffrey E. Hill, Nina G. Jablonski, Chris D. Jiggins, Almut Kelber, Johanna Mappes, Justin Marshall, Richard Merrill, Daniel Osorio, Richard Prum, Nicholas W. Roberts, Alexandre Roulin, Hannah M. Rowland, Thomas N. Sherratt, John Skelhorn, Michael P. Speed, Martin Stevens, Mary Caswell Stoddard, Devi Stuart-Fox, Laszlo Talas, Elizabeth Tibbetts, Tim Caro, 2017, Science

Gibbon genome and the fast karyotype evolution of small apes

Lucia Carbone, R. Alan Harris, Sante Gnerre, Krishna R. Veeramah, Belen Lorente-Galdos, John Huddleston, Thomas J. Meyer, Javier Herrero, Christian Roos, Bronwen Aken, Fabio Anaclerio, Nicoletta Archidiacono, Carl Baker, Daniel Barrell, Mark A. Batzer, Kathryn Beal, Antoine Blancher, Craig L. Bohrson, Markus Brameier, Michael S. Campbell, Oronzo Capozzi, Claudio Casola, Giorgia Chiatante, Andrew Cree, Annette Damert, Pieter J. De Jong, Laura Dumas, Marcos Fernandez-Callejo, Paul Flicek, Nina V. Fuchs, Ivo Gut, Marta Gut, Matthew W. Hahn, Jessica Hernandez-Rodriguez, Ladeana W. Hillier, Robert Hubley, Bianca Ianc, Zsuzsanna Izsvák, Nina G. Jablonski, Laurel M. Johnstone, Anis Karimpour-Fard, Miriam K. Konkel, Dennis Kostka, Nathan H. Lazar, Sandra L. Lee, Lora R. Lewis, Yue Liu, Devin P. Locke, Swapan Mallick, Fernando L. Mendez, Matthieu Muffato, Lynne V. Nazareth, Kimberly A. Nevonen, Majesta O'Bleness, Cornelia Ochis, Duncan T. Odom, Katherine S. Pollard, Javier Quilez, David Reich, Mariano Rocchi, Gerald G. Schumann, Stephen Searle, James M. Sikela, Gabriella Skollar, Arian Smit, Kemal Sonmez, Boudewijn Ten Hallers, Elizabeth Terhune, Gregg W.C. Thomas, Brygg Ullmer, Mario Ventura, Jerilyn A. Walker, Jeffrey D. Wall, Lutz Walter, Michelle C. Ward, Sarah J. Wheelan, Christopher W. Whelan, Simon White, Larry J. Wilhelm, August E. Woerner, Mark Yandell, Baoli Zhu, Michael F. Hammer, Tomas Marques-Bonet, Evan E. Eichler, Lucinda Fulton, Catrina Fronick, Donna M. Muzny, Wesley C. Warren, Kim C. Worley, Jeffrey Rogers, Richard K. Wilson, Richard A. Gibbs, 2014, Nature on p. 195-201


Nina G. Jablonski, 2013,

Circulating microRNAs involved in multiple sclerosis

Sue Rutherford Siege, Jason MacKenzie, George Chaplin, Nina G. Jablonski, Lyn Griffiths, 2012, Molecular Biology Reports on p. 6219-6225

Sexual selection on male vocal fundamental frequency in humans and other anthropoids

David A. Puts, Alexander K. Hill, Drew H. Bailey, Robert S. Walker, Drew Rendall, John R. Wheatley, Lisa L.M. Welling, Khytam Dawood, Rodrigo Cárdenas, Robert P. Burriss, Nina G. Jablonski, Mark D. Shriver, Daniel Weiss, Adriano R. Lameira, Coren L. Apicella, Michael J. Owren, Claudia Barelli, Mary E. Glenn, Gabriel Ramos-Fernandez, 2016, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences on p. 20152830

Youth Violence

Brad J. Bushman, Katherine Newman, Sandra L. Calvert, Geraldine Downey, Mark Dredze, Michael Gottfredson, Nina G. Jablonski, Ann S. Masten, Calvin Morrill, Daniel B. Neill, Daniel Romer, Daniel W. Webster, 2016, American Psychologist on p. 17-39

Living color

Nina G. Jablonski, 2012,

Human skin pigmentation, migration and disease susceptibility

Nina G. Jablonski, George Chaplin, 2012, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences on p. 785-792

Sunscreen photoprotection and vitamin D status

T. Passeron, R. Bouillon, V. Callender, T. Cestari, T. L. Diepgen, A. C. Green, J. C. van der Pols, B. A. Bernard, F. Ly, F. Bernerd, L. Marrot, M. Nielsen, M. Verschoore, N. G. Jablonski, A. R. Young, 2019, British Journal of Dermatology on p. 916-931

The colours of humanity

Nina G. Jablonski, George Chaplin, 2017, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

News Articles Featuring Nina Jablonski

Skin colour as a weapon of mass destruction

Skin colour, race, is a topic, like religion and politics, that evokes strong emotional feeling, passion. Many would prefer that it were not touched, discussed, or debated, treated as taboo, as if we suddenly became colour blind.

There’s No Proof Sunscreen Prevents Cancer in Black People. Why Do Doctors Keep Pushing It?

Meet the renegade dermatologist determined to correct race-based misinformation on melanoma.

The Story of an African Children’s Book That Explains the Science of Skin Colour

We all need to forgive ourselves and one another

Why Aren't There Mammals in Super Vivid Colors Like There Are Birds and Bugs?

Plumage. An incredible world, for an incredible phenomenon. Say it with me now: plumage. Picture the colors, their variety and richness. Picture, while you’re at it, some other stuff relevant to this week’s Giz Asks, such as bugs that look shaped from stained glass and sea creatures that look like they’ve been doused in neon paint.

Three Penn State faculty elected to National Academy of Sciences

Nina Jablonski, Evan Pugh University Professor of Anthropology; Jainendra K. Jain, Evan Pugh University Professor and Erwin W. Mueller Professor of Physics; and Peter Mészáros, Eberly Chair Professor, emeritus, of Astronomy and Astrophysics, have been recognized for their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.

Skin Colour, Vitamin D Deficits and Disease Risks

Deficiency has been associated with multiple sclerosis and even COVID-19.

Monkey fossils unearthed in China date back 6.4 MILLION years and are the oldest to be found outside of Africa

Small fossils have been unearthed in China that belonged to a monkey about 6.4 million years ago. The remains were found a southeastern Yunan Province mine, making them the oldest to be found outside of Africa. Researchers from Penn State University have obtained a heelbone and jawbone with teeth that are believed to have been a female.

Fossils Of 6.4 Million-Year-Old Monkeys Are Among The Oldest Found Outside Of Africa

The story of how monkeys conquered the world is a remarkable tale that includes an improbable trip across the Atlantic on a floating island that broke away from mainland Africa. In yet another twist, researchers have just uncovered the remains of an ancient species that lived in what is now China some 6.4 million years ago, suggesting that monkeys had reached the Far East at a time when ancient apes still roamed Asia.

Bill Nye Breaks Down The Science Behind Skin Color, Points Out 'We’re All One Species'

The Science Guy wants you to understand the relationship between skin tone and ultraviolet rays — and to start “treating each other fairly.”

Why does racism prevail? Leading scholars apply their minds

All humans belong to one biological species; there are no human “races”. The belief in race defines the lived experience of many, influences how governments act, and how people treat others. How did race come to have this power and this durability?