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Sofia Wasterlain

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Ciência Vitae profile

+ 351 239 240 717
Research Interests
Dental Anthropology
Forensic Anthropology
Biological profile estimation

Degree in Anthropology, Master in Human Evolution and PhD in Anthropology (Specialty in Biological Anthropology) from the University of Coimbra. Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the Department of Life Sciences at the University of Coimbra (FCTUC). Sofia Wasterlain teaches several subjects of the Degree in Anthropology, Masters in Human Evolution and Biology, Masters in Forensic Anthropology, and PhD in Anthropology. Coordinator of the Degree in Anthropology at the University of Coimbra since 2019. She was curator of the Identified Osteological Collections of the University of Coimbra between 2016 and 2021. She supervised/co-supervised more than 35 Master’s dissertations. She is the author of more than 55 national and international scientific articles and three book chapters. She is a scientific reviewer for several national and international scientific journals. She is part of the Editorial Board of the Brazilian Journal of Forensic Anthropology & Legal Medicine.


– 2nd Course in Biological Anthropology: Multidisciplinary approach to the archeology of death, Department of Anthropology, University of Coimbra, 4-5 May 2007.

– 5th Biological Anthropology Course: Archaeothanatology in a rescue context, Museu D. Diogo de Sousa, Braga, 23-24 April 2010.

– 6th Biological Anthropology Course: Prehistoric Archaeothanatology in a rescue context, Department of Life Sciences, University of Coimbra, 15-16 April 2011.

– 1st Postgraduate Course in Forensic Anthropology, Southern Delegation of the National Institute of Legal Medicine, I.P., Lisbon, 2011/2012.

– 2nd Postgraduate Course in Forensic Anthropology, University of Coimbra, 2012/2013.

– 3rd Postgraduate Course in Forensic Anthropology, University of Coimbra, 2013/2014.

– Enslaved life histories summer 2022 paid internship & isotope lab training, organized by the University of California Santa Cruz (USA) and the Department of Life Sciences of the University of Coimbra, Coimbra, 27/06 to 08/07, 2022.

Main Publications

Wasterlain SN, Rufino AI, Ferreira MT. 2020. Dental caries and intentional dental modification in a skeletal sample of enslaved Africans from Lagos, Portugal (15th-17th centuries). International Journal of Osteoarchaeology 30: 109-113. DOI: 10.1002/oa.2827

González-Garrido L, González CV, Ramos RC, Wasterlain SN. 2020. Osseous mass in a maxillary sinus of an adult male from the 16th-17th-century Spain: Differential diagnosis. International Journal of Paleopathology 31:38-45. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpp.2020.08.003

González-Garrido L, Gómez-González S, Gonzalo-Orden JM, Wasterlain SN. 2020. Stafne’s bone defects from Spain: report of four cases and brief archaeological literature review. International Journal of Paleopathology 31: 46-52. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpp.2020.08.001

Wasterlain SN, Rufino AI, Carvalho LM, Ferreira MT. 2020. Enamel hypoplasia in African enslaved individuals from Valle da Gafaria, Lagos, Portugal (15th–17th centuries). International Journal of Osteoarchaeology 30: 872-881. DOI: 10.1002/oa.2917

Ferreira MT, Coelho C, Rufino AI, Navega D, Coelho JO, Almeida M, Wasterlain SN. 2020. Allongés à la poubelle: inhumations d’esclaves au Valle da Gafaria, Lagos (Portugal), XVe-XVIIIe siècles. In Des cadavres dans nos poubelles: Restes humains et espaces détritiques de la Préhistoire à nos jours. Schmitt A, Anstett E (eds.). Paris: Éditions Pétra; 159-171. ISBN: 978-2-84743-275-6

González CV, González-Garrido L, Ramos RC, Wasterlain SN. 2021. A possible case of ameloblastoma in an adult male from the early 20th century Coimbra, Portugal. International Journal of Paleopathology 34: 201-205. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpp.2021.07.001

Pfrengle S, Neukamm J, Guellil M, Keller M, Molak M, Avanzi C, Kushniarevich A, Montes N, Neumann GU, Reiter E, Tukhbatova RI, Berezina NY, Buzhilova AP, Korobov DS, Hamre SS, Matos VMJ, Ferreira MT, González-Garrido L, Wasterlain SN, Lopes C, Santos AL, Antunes-Ferreira N, Duarte V, Silva AM, Melo L, Sarkic N, Saag L, Tambets K, Busso P, Cole ST, Avlasovich A, Roberts CA, Sheridan A, Cessford C, Robb J, Krause J, Scheib CL, Inskip SA, and Schuenemann VJ. 2021. Mycobacterium leprae diversity and population dynamics in medieval Europe from novel ancient genomes. BMC Biology 19: 220. DOI: 10.1186/s12915-021-01120-2

González-Garrido L, Gómez-González S, Manuel Gonzalo-Orden JM, Wasterlain SN. 2022. Multi-headed (bifid and trifid) mandibular condyles in archaeological contexts: two posttraumatic cases. Archives of Oral Biology 134: 105326. 10.1016/j.archoralbio.2021.105326

Neves D, Silva AM, Simões F, Wasterlain SN. 2022. More than they could chew: Activity-induced dental modifications in a Portuguese Medieval-Modern rural population. International Journal of Osteoarchaeology 32: 856-865. DOI: 10.1002/oa.3113

Wasterlain SN, Rodrigues C, Ferreira, MT. 2022. Estimating age-at-death in African enslaved individuals from Valle da Gafaria by pulp/tooth area ratio in canines. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences 14: 160. DOI: 10.1007/s12520-022-01636-w

Wasterlain SN, Rufino AI, Ferreira, MT. Atypical dental wear in an enslaved individual from Lagos, Portugal. International Journal of Osteoarchaeology. (Publicado online em 09/08/2022). DOI: 10.1002/oa.3153

Research Projects

01-06-2022 to 31-05-2023: The origins and life histories of enslaved Africans from Lagos (Portugal) revealed by multi-isotope analysis; Project in collaboration with the University of California in Santa Cruz (USA). Funded by National Geographic.

01.2023 to 01.01.2026: Abordagem Interdisciplinar à Coleção Osteológica do Hospital Militar do Castelo de São Jorge (séculos XII-XIII). Project in collaboration with Universidade de Évora, Laboratório HERCULES – Herança Cultural Estudos e Salvaguarda, Centro Interdisciplinar de História, Culturas e Sociedades, Universidade de Coimbra, Centro de Investigação em Antropologia e Saúde, Universidad Complutense de Madrid – Departamento de Medicina Legal, Psiquiatría y Patología, Universidade de Lisboa, Centro de História, Chrono-environment laboratory -Université de Bourgogne Franche-Comté, EON, Indústrias Criativas Ltda. Funded by Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia.