Assistant professor Stacy Rosenbaum's new study, "Cumulative early-life adversity does not predict reduced adult longevity in wild gorillas," was recently covered by several outlets, including Science and Scientific American. Rosenbaum and her colleagues were able to examine the adverse early life experiences of over 200 gorillas in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park thanks to a special database maintained by the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund that has been monitoring the daily lives of mountain gorillas since 1967.
In an article she wrote on the study for The Conversation, Rosenbaum highlights the story of young Titus, who lost several of his immediate family members at a very early age. "Given the connection between adverse events while young and poor health later in life, one might expect that Titus’ unlucky early years would predict a short, unhealthy adulthood for him. However, there are interesting hints that things might work differently in mountain gorillas, which are one of humans’ closest living relatives."
Science: "Mountain gorillas bounce back from rough childhoods better than many humans and other primates," by Michael Price
Scientific American: "Gorillas’ Resilience after Early-Life Trauma Holds Lessons for Humans," by Rachel Nuwer
Michigan News: "Most species, including humans, who experience early life adversity suffer as adults. How are gorillas different?," by Morgan Sherburne