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Neetha Iyer


  • 2018 - M.A. Evolutionary Anthropology (University of California, Davis)
  • 2013 - B.S. Molecular & Environmental Biology (University of California, Berkeley)
  • 2013 - B.A. French (University of California, Berkeley)


My research interests include the evolution of sociality and disease in animals. I currently study the effects of ranging patterns and social behavior on parasite transmission in Grauer's gorillas (Gorilla beringei graueri). I am passionate about promoting diversity in STEM fields by increasing public access to basic science research, through the Outreach Program in the Department of Anthropology and the official Animal Behavior Graduate Group blog The Ethogram. I currently serve as the Unit Chair at Davis for our statewide student-worker union UAW 2865 and look forward to bargaining for a strong contract to improve our living and working conditions. I also support Student Researcher's United (SRU) as we bargain for our first contract with the UC. 

Advisor: Dr. Damien Caillaud

Research Focus

Primate sociality, movement ecology, social networks, host-parasite-microbe interactions, animal behavior, genetics, conservation biology


Associate Instructor (AI) Positions:

  • ANT158: The Evolution of Sex: A Biological Perspective (Fall 2019, 2020, 2021)
  • ANT1: Human Evolutionary Biology (Summer Session II 2021)

Teaching Assistant (TA) Positions:

  • ANT1: Human Evolutionary Biology (Fall 2017, Winter 2019)
  • ANT27: Great Adaptations: Genetic & Cultural Evolution in the Spread of Humanity
  • ANT153: Human Genetics (Winter 2018)
  • ANT 154A: Primate Socioecology (Fall 2018)
  • ANT191: Data Visualization (Spring 2018)

Reader Positions:

  • ANT155: Primate Conservation Biology (Spring 2020, 2021)
  • ANT191: Data Visualization (Spring 2019)


  • UC Davis Microbiome Special Research Program, Microbiome Graduate Research Award (2019)
  • UC Davis Evolutionary Anthropology, Rodman-Mitani Award (2019)
  • Morris Animal Foundation, Pilot Study Grant (2018-2019)
  • UC Davis Evolutionary Anthropology, Summer Fellowship (2017, 2018)
  • UC Davis Institute of Social Sciences, Summer Fellowship (2017, 2018)
  • UC Davis Graduate Student Association Travel Award (2017)
  • UC Davis Women's Resources & Research Center Graduate Research Grant (2017)
  • UC Davis Provost's Fellowship in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (2016-2017)