Ghislain THIERY

Associated member

Main research question

I am interested in the role played by food material properties and ingesting behavior in the evolution of dental form and function, especially in primates.

Topics of study

I am currently collaborating with Drs. Franck Guy and Vincent Lazzari for the DietPrime ANR:

  • Anatomy: Identification of primate dental tools by combining the study of their dietary behavior and of the topography of their dental crowns;
  • Biomechanics: Study of the material properties of the plants consumed by extant primates, using a portable universal mechanical tester (FLS-2);
  • Programming: Development of doolkit, an R package allowing to explore, measure and compare 3d dental topography.

I am also working with Gildas Merceron and the consortium of the DietScratches ANR:

  • Anatomy: Study of the dental topography of domestic pigs from the project;
  • Biomechanics: Study of the material properties of the food eaten by the project’s pigs;
  • Programming: Development of trident, an R package for measuring and comparing dental microwear textures.


I studied fossil primates from the Miocene of the Balkans. I am also interested in extant primates living in their natural environment.

Find out more


Iconic publications

Gibert C., Zacaï A., Fluteau F., Ramstein G., Chavasseau O., Thiery G., Souron A., Banks W., Guy F., Barboni D., Sepulchre P., Blondel C., Merceron G. & Otero O. 2022 – A coherent biogeographical framework for Old World Neogene and Pleistocene mammals – Palaeontology 65: e12594 –

Merceron G., Kallend A., Francisco A., Louail M., Martin F., Plastiras C.-A., Thiery G., Boisserie J.-R. 2021 – Further away with dental microwear analysis: food resource partitioning among Plio-Pleistocene monkeys from the Shungura Formation, Ethiopia – Palaeogeography Palaeoclimatology Palaeoecology 572, 110414.

Ghislain Thiery, Corentin Gibert, Franck Guy, Vincent Lazzari, Denis Geraads, Nikolai Spassov and Gildas Merceron, 2021 – From leaves to seeds? The dietary shift in late Miocene colobine monkeys of southeastern Europe –

Thiery G, Sha JCM, 2020. Low occurrence of molar use in black-tufted capuchin monkeys: Should adaptation to seed ingestion be inferred from molars in primates? – Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 555, 109853. DOI:10.1016/j.palaeo.2020.109853.

Thiery G, Guy F, Lazzari V, 2019 – A comparison of relief estimates used in three-dimensional dental topography – Am J Phys Anthropol.: DOI: 10.1002/ajpa.23916.

Thiery, F. Guy and V. Lazzari, 2019 – Enamel Distribution in 3D: Is Enamel Thickness More Uneven in the Upper Second Molars of Durophagous Hominoids? – BMSAP: Volume 31, Numéro 1-2.

Thiery, G., Gillet, G., Lazzari, V., Merceron, G., Guy, F., 2017. Was Mesopithecus a seed eating colobine? Assessment of cracking, grinding and shearing ability using dental topography. Journal of Human Evolution, 112, 79‑92.

Thiery, G., Lazzari, V., Ramdarshan, A., Guy, F., 2017. Beyond the Map: Enamel Distribution Characterized from 3D Dental Topography. Frontiers in Physiology, 8.

Thiery, G., Guy, F., Lazzari, V., 2017. Investigating the dental toolkit of primates based on food mechanical properties: Feeding action does matter. American Journal of Primatology, 79(6), e22640.

Guy, F., Lazzari, V., Gilissen, E., Thiery, G., 2015. To What Extent is Primate Second Molar Enamel Occlusal Morphology Shaped by the Enamel-Dentine Junction? PLOS ONE, 10(9), e0138802.



Tél. : +33 (0)5 49 45 37 53

Guylaine REYNAUD

Tél. : +33 (0)5 49 45 37 26

Fax : +33.(0)5 49 45 40 17


Université de Poitiers – UFR SFA


Bât B35 – TSA 51106

6 rue Michel Brunet

86073 POITIERS Cedex 9