Department: Comparative Biomedical Sciences

Campus: Hawkshead

Research Groups: Musculoskeletal Biology

Research Centres: Structure & Motion Laboratory, MicroCT

Professor Hutchinson is a Professor of Evolutionary Biomechanics. John's research straddles the fields of evolutionary biology and biomechanics, with an emphasis on how very large animals stand and move and how locomotion evolved in different groups of land vertebrates. He has mentored 16 postdoctoral scholars, 9 research technicians, 9 PhD students (plus 19 more as co-supervisor/committtee member), 7 masters students and over 150 undergraduate student research projects since 2004.

Professor Hutchinson is an American biologist who found a new home in the UK as a dual citizen. He gained a BS degree in Zoology at the University of Wisconsin in 1993, then received a PhD in Integrative Biology at the University of California with Kevin Padian in 2001 (view my academic lineage here!), and rounded out his training with a two-year National Science Foundation bioinformatics Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Biomechanical Engineering Division of Stanford University with Scott Delp.

John started at the Royal Veterinary College as a Lecturer in Evolutionary Biomechanics in 2003 in the Department of Veterinary Basic Sciences (now Department of Comparative Biomedical Sciences), in 2008 became a Reader, and in 2011 became a full Professor.

Prof. Hutchinson is an Editor for Proceedings of the Royal Society B and the modern open access journal PeerJ. He is also a Fellow of the Linnean Society of London, the Zoological Society of London, the Anatomical Society (UK), the Higher Education Academy (UK) and the Royal Society of Biology. From 2012-2013 he had a sabbatical as a Royal Society Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellow at the RVC. He is Chair of the Division of Vertebrate Morphology in the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. As an OpenSim Fellow he promotes the usage and improvement of computer simulations in biomechanics, and he was New Fellow of the Year of the Anatomical Society in 2015. Prof. Hutchinson has also held Honorary Professorships at the University of Queensland (Australia) and at University College London.

John's team is part of the Structure & Motion Laboratory.

How to visit us at the Hawkshead RVC campus outside London

Prof. Hutchinson has worked on extant and extinct animals ranging from birds and crocodiles to elephants and many other mammals as well as extinct dinosaurs and early tetrapods. John uses a combination of theoretical and experimental techniques, from motion analysis or XROMM and force platforms to simple 2D static mechanics or complex 3D fully dynamic computer simulations.

Along with his collaborators, he has secured over £7 million in research funding since 2004; including grants from the BBSRC, NERC, Royal Society, Wellcome Trust, Leverhulme Trust, Royal Society, ERC and multiple EU Marie Sklodowska-Curie fellowships. His team's major current ERC-funded project through 2021 "Dawn of the Dinosaurs" has a website here.

Examples of Prof. Hutchinson's current and past research projects are here:

1. Tyrannosaurus was not a fast runner

2. Why dinosaur locomotion is about more than just bones

3. Are fast-moving elephants really running?

4. How elephants use their limbs to move like 4WD vehicles

5. Do elephants have six toes?

6. Three-dimensional computer modelling shows how Tyrannosaurus rex grew

7. Limb joint mobility in the early tetrapod Ichthyostega reveals how walking evolved

8. Using particle accelerators to show how the tetrapod backbone evolved

9. Biomechanics and pathology of mammalian feet (BBSRC grant w/Renate Weller and colleagues)

10. Evolution of dinosaur body shape and locomotion

11. Evolution of form, function and development of sesamoid bones in vertebrate limbs

12. Dawn of the dinosaurs: testing the locomotor superiority hypothesis (current major project through 2021)


ORCID: 0000-0002-6767-7038              Citations: 5568; H-index: 39; i10-index:   86

* = undergraduate student coauthor at JRH institution

Publications: (147 since 1997)               Peer-Reviewed Journals (125):

125. Strickson, E.C., Hutchinson, J.R., Wilkinson, D.M., Falkingham, P.L.  2019. Can skeletal surface area predict in vivo foot surface area? Journal of Anatomy, in press. Data available at .

124. Herbst, E.C., Doube, M., Smithson, T.R., Clack, J.A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2019. Bony lesions in early tetrapods and the evolution of mineralized tissue repair. Paleobiology, in press.

123. Otero, A., Cuff, A.R., Allen, V., Sumner-Rooney, L., Pol, D., Hutchinson, J.R. 2019. Ontogenetic changes in the body plan of the sauropodomorph dinosaur Mussaurus patagonicus reveal shifts of locomotor stance during growth. Scientific Reports 9:7614. Data available at

122. Panagiotopoulou, O., Pataky, T.C., Hutchinson, J.R. 2019. Foot pressure distribution in White Rhinoceroses (Ceratotherium simum) during walking. PeerJ 7:e6881. Data available at

121. Esteve-Altava, B., Pierce, S.E., Molnar, J.L., Johnston, P., Diogo, R., Hutchinson, J.R. 2019. Evolutionary parallelisms of pectoral and pelvic network-anatomy from fins to limbs. Science Advances 5:eaau7459. Data available at

120. Cuff, A.R., Daley, M.A., Michel, K.B., Allen, V.R., Lamas, Luis P., Adami, C., Monticelli, P., Pelligand, L., Hutchinson, J.R. 2019. Relating neuromuscular control to functional anatomy of limb muscles in extant archosaurs. Journal of Morphology 280:666-680.

119. Kilbourne, B., Hutchinson, J.R. 2019. Morphological diversification of biomechanical traits: mustelid locomotor specializations and the macroevolution of long bone cross-sectional morphology. BMC Evolutionary Biology 19:37. Data available at and

118. Basu, C., Deakin, F., Hutchinson, J.R. (co-senior author), Wilson, A.M. 2019. The running kinematics of free-roaming giraffes, measured using a low cost unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). PeerJ 7:e6312.

117. Nyakatura, J.A., Melo, K., Horvat, T., Karakasiliotis, K., Allen, V.R., Andikfar, A., Andrada, E., Arnold, P., Lauströer, J., Hutchinson, J.R., Fischer, M.S., Ijspeert, A.J. 2019. Reverse engineering the locomotion of an extinct stem amniote. Nature 565:351–355. Interactive website at: [Featured editorial, video and cover image]

116. Basu, C., Wilson, A.M., Hutchinson, J.R. 2019. The locomotor kinematics and ground reaction forces of walking giraffes. Journal of Experimental Biology 222: jeb159277. doi: 10.1242/jeb.159277 Data available at

115. Monticelli, P., Ronaldson, H.L., Hutchinson, J.R., Cuff, A.R., d’Ovidio D., Adami, C. 2019. Medetomidine-ketamine-sevoflurane anaesthesia in juvenile Nile crocodiles (Crocodylus niloticus) undergoing experimental surgery. Veterinary Anaesthesia and Analgesia 46:84-89. doi: 10.1016/j.vaa.2018.09.004

114. Herbst, E., Hutchinson, J.R. 2018. New insights into the morphology of the Carboniferous tetrapod Crassigyrinus scoticus from computed tomography. Earth and Environmental Science Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, published online. Data available at

113. Bishop, P.J., Hocknull, S.A., Clemente, C.J., Hutchinson, J.R., Farke, A.A., Barrett, R.S., Lloyd, D.G. 2018. Cancellous bone and theropod dinosaur locomotion. Part III – Inferring posture and locomotor biomechanics in extinct theropods, and its evolution on the line to birds. PeerJ 6:e5778.

112. Bishop, P.J., Hocknull, S.A., Clemente, C.J., Hutchinson, J.R., Barrett, R.S., Lloyd, D.G. 2018. Cancellous bone and theropod dinosaur locomotion. Part II – A new approach to inferring posture and locomotor biomechanics in extinct tetrapod vertebrates. PeerJ 6:e5779.

111. Bishop, P.J., Hocknull, S.A., Clemente, C.J., Hutchinson, J.R., Farke, A.A., Beck, B.R., Barrett, R.S., Lloyd, D.G. 2018. Cancellous bone and theropod dinosaur locomotion. Part I – An examination of cancellous bone architecture in the hindlimb bones of theropods. PeerJ 6:e5777.

110. Ellis, R., Rankin, J.W., Hutchinson, J.R. 2018. Limb kinematics, kinetics and muscle dynamics during the sit-to-stand transition in greyhounds. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology 6:162. doi: 10.3389/fbioe.2018.00162 Data available at

109. Heers, A.M., Rankin, J.W., Hutchinson, J.R. 2018. Building a bird: Musculoskeletal modeling and simulation of wing-assisted incline running during avian ontogeny. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology 6:140.

108. Doube, M., Felder, A.F., Chua, M.Y., Lodhia, K., Klosowski, M., Hutchinson, J.R., Shefelbine, S.J. 2018. Limb bone scaling in hopping macropods and quadrupedal artiodactyls. Royal Society Open Science 5: 180152. Data available at: doi:10.6084/m9.figshare.5634208

107. Clark, E., Hutchinson, J.R., Darrock, S.A.F., Mongiardino Koch, N., Brady, T.R., Smith, S.A., Briggs, D.E.G. 2018. Integrating morphology, skeletal mobility and in vivo behavioral observations with digital models to infer function in brittle star arms. Journal of Anatomy 233:696-714. doi: 10.1111/joa.12887

106. Charles, J.P., Cappellari, O., Hutchinson, J.R. 2018. A dynamic simulation of musculoskeletal function in the mouse hindlimb during trotting locomotion. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology 6:61. doi: 10.3389/fbioe.2018.00061 Data available at

105. Molnar, J., Diogo, R., Hutchinson, J.R., Pierce, S.E. 2018. Evolution of hindlimb muscle anatomy across the tetrapod water-land transition, including comparisons with forelimb anatomy. Anatomical Record, published online.

104. Adams, G., Cook, R.B., Hutchinson, J.R., Zioupos, P. 2018. Bone apparent and material densities examined by cone beam computed tomography and the Archimedes technique: comparison of the two methods and their results. Frontiers in Mechanical Engineering: Mechanics of Materials 3:23. doi: 10.3389/fmech.2017.00023

103. Bishop, P.J., Clemente, C.J., Graham, D.F., Lamas, L.P., Hutchinson, J.R., Rubenson, J., Wilson, R.S., Hocknull, S.A., Barrett, R.S., Lloyd, D.G. 2018. The influence of speed and size on avian terrestrial locomotor biomechanics: predicting locomotion in extinct theropod dinosaurs. PLOS One 13(2): e0192172. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0192172

102. Tickle, P.G., Hutchinson, J.R., Codd, J.R. 2018. Energy allocation and behaviour in the growing broiler chicken. Scientific Reports 8:4562. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-22604-2

101. Tsai, H., Middleton, K.M., Hutchinson, J.R., Holliday, C.M. 2018. Hip joint articular soft tissues of non-dinosaurian Dinosauromorpha and early Dinosauria: evolutionary and biomechanical implications for Saurischia. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. doi: 10.1080/02724634.2017.1427593

100. Esteve-Altava, B., Molnar, J.L., Johnston, P., Hutchinson, J.R., Diogo, R. 2018. Anatomical network analysis of the musculoskeletal system reveals integration loss and parcellation boost during the fins-to-limbs transition. Evolution 72: 601-618. doi: 10.1111/evo.13430 Data and code available at Figshare:

99. Otero, A., Allen, V., Pol, D., Hutchinson, J.R. 2017. Forelimb muscle and joint actions in Archosauria: insights from Crocodylus johnstoni (Pseudosuchia) and Mussaurus patagonicus (Sauropodomorpha). PeerJ 5:e3976. doi: 10.7717/peerj.3976 Models available at Figshare: and

98. Hu, X., Charles, J.P., Akay, T., Hutchinson, J.R., Blemker, S.S. 2017. Are mice good models for human neuromuscular disease? Comparing muscle excursions in walking between mice and humans. Skeletal Muscle 7:26. doi: 10.1186/s13395-017-0143-9

97. Molnar, J., Diogo, R., Hutchinson, J.R., Pierce, S.E. 2018. Reconstructing pectoral appendicular muscle anatomy in fossil fish and tetrapods over the fins-to-limbs transition. Biological Reviews 93:1077-1107. doi: 10.1111/brv.12386

96. Felder, A.A., Phillips, C., Cornish, H., Cooke, M., Hutchinson, J.R., Doube, M. 2017. Secondary osteons scale allometrically in the mammalian humerus and femur. Royal Society Open Science 4:170431. doi: 10.1091/rsos.170431

95. Regnault, S., Allen, V., Chadwick, K.P., Hutchinson, J.R. 2017. Analysis of the moment arms and kinematics of ostrich (Struthio camelus) double patellar sesamoids. Journal of Experimental Zoology A 327:163-171. doi: 10.1002/jez.2082

94. Macaulay, S., Hutchinson, J.R., Bates, K.T. 2017. A quantitative evaluation of physical and digital approaches to centre of mass estimation. Journal of Anatomy 231:758-775. doi: 10.1111/joa.12667

93. Bishop, P. J., Clemente, C. J., Weems, R. E., Graham, D. F., Lamas, L. P., Hutchinson, J. R., Rubenson, J., Wilson, R. S., Hocknull, S. A., Barrett, R. S., Lloyd, D. G. 2017. Using step width to compare locomotor biomechanics between extinct, non-avian theropod dinosaurs and modern obligate bipeds. Journal of the Royal Society Interface 14:20170276. doi: 10.1098/rsif.2017.0276 Data available at Figshare:

92. Allen, V.R., Kambic, R.E., Gatesy, S.M., Hutchinson, J.R. 2017. Gearing effects of the patella (knee extensor muscle sesamoid) of the helmeted guineafowl during terrestrial locomotion. Journal of Zoology 303:178-187. doi: 10.1111/jzo.12485 Code available at Figshare:

91. Chadwick, K.P., Shefelbine, S.J., Pitsillides, A.A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2017. Finite-element modelling of mechanobiological factors influencing sesamoid tissue morphology in the patellar tendon of an ostrich. Royal Society Open Science 4:170133. doi: 10.1098/rsos.170133 Data available at Figshare:

90. Pollard, A., Charlton, B., Hutchinson, J.R., Gustafsson, T., McGonnell, I., Timmons, J., Pitsillides, A. 2017. Limb proportions show developmental plasticity in response to embryo movement. Scientific Reports 7:41926. doi: 10.1038/srep41926

89. Cuff, A.R., Goswami, A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2017. Reconstruction of the musculoskeletal system in an extinct lion. Palaeontologia Electronica 20.2.23A:1-25. link

88. Davies, T.G., Rahman, I.A., Lautenschlager, S., Cunningham, J.A., Asher, R.J., Barrett, P.M., Bates, K.T., Bengtson, S., Benson, R.B.J., Boyer, D.M., Braga, J., Bright, J.A., Claessens, L.P.A.M., Cox, P.G., Dong, X.-P., Evans, A.R., Falkingham, P.L., Friedman, M., Garwood, R.J., Goswami, A., Hutchinson, J.R., Jeffery, N.S., Johanson, Z., Lebrun, R., Martínez-Pérez, C., Marugán-Lobón, J., O'Higgins, P.M., Metscher, B., Orliac, M., Rowe, T.B., Rücklin, M., Sánchez-Villagra, M.R., Shubin, N.H., Smith, S.Y., Starck, J.M., Stringer, C., Summers, A.P., Sutton, M.D., Walsh, S.A., Weisbecker, V., Witmer, L.M., Wroe, S., Yin, Z., Rayfield, E.J., Donoghue, P.C.J. 2017. Open data and digital morphology. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: 20170194. doi: 10.1098/rspb.2017.0194

87. Jiang, B., Zhao, T., Regnault, S., Edwards, N.P., Kohn, S.C., Li, Z., Wogelius, R.A., Benton, M., Hutchinson, J.R. 2017. Cellular preservation of musculoskeletal specializations in the Cretaceous bird Confuciusornis. Nature Communications 8:14779. doi: 10.1038/NCOMMS14779 Data available at Figshare:

86. Samuels, M., Regnault, S., Hutchinson, J.R. 2017. Evolution of the patellar sesamoid bone in mammals. PeerJ 5:e3103. doi:

85.  Regnault, S., Dixon, J.J.I., Warren-Smith, C., Hutchinson, J.R., Weller, R. 2016. Skeletal pathology and variable anatomy in elephant feet assessed using computed tomography. PeerJ 5:e2877. doi: 10.7717/peerj.2877

84. Regnault, S., Hutchinson, J.R., Jones, M.E.H. 2017. Sesamoid bones in tuatara (Sphenodon punctatus) investigated with X-ray microtomography, and implications for sesamoid evolution in Lepidosauria. Journal of Morphology 278:62-72. doi:10.1002/jmor.20619 Data available at:

83. Randau, M., Cuff, A.R., Hutchinson, J.R., Pierce, S.E., Goswami, A. 2016. Regional differentiation of felid vertebral column evolution: a study of 3D shape trajectories. Organisms Diversity & Evolution (2016) 1-15. doi:10.1007/s13127-016-0304-4

82. Panagiotopoulou, O., Pataky, T.C., Day, M., Hensman, M.C., Hensman, S., Hutchinson, J.R., Clemente, C.J. 2016. Foot pressure distributions during walking in African elephants (Loxodonta africana). Royal Society Open Science 3: 160203. doi: 10.1098/rsos.160203

81. Panagiotopoulou, O., Rankin, J.W., Gatesy, S.M., Hutchinson, J.R. 2016. A preliminary case study of the effect of shoe-wearing on the biomechanics of a horse’s foot. PeerJ 4: e2164. doi: 10.7717/peerj.2164

80. Bates, K.T., Mannion, P.D., Falkingham, P.L., Brusatte, S.L., Hutchinson, J.R., Otero, A., Sellers, W.I., Sullivan, C., Stevens, K.A., Allen, V. 2016. Temporal and phylogenetic evolution of the sauropod dinosaur body plan. Royal Society Open Science 3: 150636. doi: 10.1098/rsos.150636

79. Randau, M., Goswami, A., Hutchinson, J.R., Cuff, A.R., Pierce, S.E. 2016. Cryptic complexity in felid vertebral evolution: shape differentiation and allometry of the axial skeleton. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 178:183-202. doi: 10.1111/zoj.12403

78. Rankin, J.W., Rubenson, J., Hutchinson, J.R. 2016. Inferring muscle functional roles of the ostrich pelvic limb during walking and running using computer optimization. Journal of the Royal Society- Interface 20160035. Data available at Dryad: and

77. Charles, J.P., Cappellari, O., Spence, A.J., Wells, D.J., Hutchinson, J.R. 2016. Muscle moment arms and sensitivity analysis of a mouse hindlimb musculoskeletal model. Journal of Anatomy 229:514–535. doi: 10.1111/joa.12461 Model available at:

76. Charles, J.P., Cappellari, O., Spence, A.J., Hutchinson, J.R., Wells, D.J. 2016. Musculoskeletal geometry, muscle architecture and functional specialisations of the mouse hindlimb. PLOS One 11(4): e0147669. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0147669

75. Cuff, A.R., Sparkes, E.L., Randau, M., Pierce, S.E., Kitchener, A.C., Goswami, A. and Hutchinson, J.R. 2016. The scaling of postcranial muscles in cats (Felidae) I: forelimb, cervical, and thoracic muscles. Journal of Anatomy 229:128–141. doi: 10.1111/joa.12477

74. Cuff, A.R., Sparkes, E.L., Randau, M., Pierce, S.E., Kitchener, A.C., Goswami, A. and Hutchinson, J.R. 2016. The scaling of postcranial muscles in cats (Felidae) II: hindlimb and lumbosacral muscles. Journal of Anatomy 229:142–152. doi: 10.1111/joa.12474

73. Regnault, S., Jones, M.E.H., Pitsillides, A.A. Hutchinson, J.R. 2016. Anatomy, morphology and evolution of the patella in squamate lizards and tuatara (Sphenodon punctatus). Journal of Anatomy 228: 864–876. doi: 10.1111/joa.12435

72. Basu, C., Falkingham, P.L., Hutchinson, J.R. 2016. The extinct, giant giraffid Sivatherium giganteum: skeletal reconstruction and body mass estimation. Biology Letters 20150940. Open database provided at:

71. Neves, D.P., Abdanan Mehdizadeh, S., Banhazi, T.M., Hutchinson, J.R., Nääs, I.A. 2015. The effects of feed particle size on feeding kinematics in young broiler chickens. In: 7th European Conference on Precision Livestock Farming, 2015, Milan. Precision Livestock farming '15. Milan: Guarino, M.; Berckmans, pp. 801-810.

70. Molnar, J., Pierce, S.E., Bhullar, B.-A.S., Turner, A.H., Hutchinson, J.R. 2015. Morphological and functional changes in the vertebral column with increasing aquatic adaptation in crocodylomorphs. Royal Society Open Science 2: 150439. doi: 10.1098/rsos.150439  Open database provided at:

69. Houssaye, A., Waskow, K., Hayashi, S., Cornette, R., Lee, A.H., Hutchinson, J.R. 2015. Biomechanical evolution of solid bones in large animals: a microanatomical investigation. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 117:350–371. doi: 10.1111/bij.12660

68. Cuff, A.R., Randau, M., Head, J., Hutchinson, J.R., Pierce, S.E., Goswami, A. 2015. Big cat, small cat: Reconstructing body size evolution in living and extinct Felidae. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 28:1516-1525. doi: 10.1111/jeb.12671

67. Hutchinson, J.R., Rankin, J.W., Rubenson, J., Rosenbluth, K.H., Siston, R.A., Delp, S.L. 2015. Musculoskeletal modelling of an ostrich (Struthio camelus) pelvic limb: Influence of limb orientation on muscular capacity during locomotion. PeerJ 3:e1001.

66. Chadwick, K.P., Regnault, S., Allen, V., Hutchinson, J.R. 2014. Three-dimensional anatomy of the ostrich (Struthio camelus) knee joint. PeerJ 2:e706.

65. Lamas, L., Main, R.P., Hutchinson, J.R. 2014. Ontogenetic scaling patterns and functional anatomy of the pelvic limb musculature in emus (Dromaius novaehollandiae). PeerJ 2:e716.

64. Regnault, S., Pitsillides, A.A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2014. Structure, ontogeny and evolution of the patellar tendon in emus (Dromaius novaehollandiae) and other palaeognath birds. PeerJ 2:e711.

63. Dudley, R.J., Wood, S.P., Hutchinson, J.R., Weller, R. 2014. Radiographic protocol and normal anatomy of the hind feet in the White Rhinoceros (Ceratotherium simum). Veterinary Radiology & Ultrasound, online. doi: 10.1111/vru.12215

62. Allen, V., Molnar, J., Pollard, A. *, Nolan, G. *, Hutchinson, J.R. 2014. Comparative architectural properties of limb muscles in Crocodylidae and Alligatoridae and their relevance to divergent use of asymmetrical gaits in extant Crocodylia. Journal of Anatomy 225: 569-582. [Cover image; also Journal of Anatomy Runner-Up Best Paper Prize, 2014] doi: 10.1111/joa.12245

61. Tickle, P.G., Paxton, H., Rankin, J.W., Hutchinson, J.R., Codd, J.R. 2014. Anatomical and biomechanical traits of broiler chickens across ontogeny. Part I. Anatomy of the musculoskeletal respiratory apparatus and changes in organ size. PeerJ 2:e432

60. Paxton, H., Tickle, P.G., Rankin, J.W., Codd, J.R., Hutchinson, J.R. 2014. Anatomical and biomechanical traits of broiler chickens across ontogeny. Part II. Body segment inertial properties and muscle architecture of the pelvic limb. PeerJ 2:e473

59. Molnar, J., Pierce, S.E., Hutchinson, J.R. 2014. An experimental and morphometric test of the relationship between vertebral morphology and joint stiffness in Nile crocodiles (Crocodylus niloticus). Journal of Experimental Biology 217: 757-768. doi: 10.1242/jeb.089904

58. Regnault, S. *, Hermes R., Hildebrandt, T., Hutchinson. J.R., Weller, R. 2013. Osteopathology in the feet of rhinoceroses: Lesion type and distribution. Journal of Zoo & Wildlife Medicine 44: 918-927. 2014 best paper winner (Linda Munson Pathology Manuscript Award)                    

57. Qian, Z., Ren, L., Ding, Y., Hutchinson J.R., Ren, L. 2013. A dynamic finite element analysis of human foot complex in the sagittal plane during level walking. PLoS ONE 8(11): e79424.  doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0079424

56. Paxton, H., Daley, M.A., Corr, S.A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2013. The gait dynamics of the modern broiler chicken: A cautionary tale of selective breeding. Journal of Experimental Biology 216: 3237-3248. doi: 10.1242/jeb.080309

55. Pittman, M., Gatesy, S.M., Upchurch, P., Goswami, A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2013. Shake a tail feather: the evolution of the theropod tail into a stiff aerodynamic surface. PLOS ONE 8(5): e63115. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0063115                                      

54. Pierce, S.E., Hutchinson, J.R., Clack, J.A. 2013. Historical perspectives on the evolution of tetrapodomorph movement. Integrative and Comparative Biology 53: 209-223. doi: 10.1093/icb/ict022 Free access available at:

53. Allen, V.A., Bates, K.T., Li, Z., Hutchinson, J.R. 2013. Linking the evolution of body shape and locomotor biomechanics in bird-line archosaurs. Nature 497:104–107. doi:10.1038/nature12059 (explanatory blog post here and webpage here Open database provided at: Dryad Digital Repository- doi: 10.5061/dryad.hh74n

52. Schachner, E.R., Hutchinson, J.R., Farmer, C.G. 2013. Pulmonary anatomy in the Nile crocodile and the evolution of unidirectional airflow in Archosauria. PeerJ 1:e60 Open database provided at: Dryad Digital Repository. doi: 10.5061/dryad.h702r

51. Warner, S.E., Pickering, P., Panagiotopoulou, O., Pfau, T., Ren, L., Hutchinson, J.R. 2013. Size-related changes in foot impact mechanics in hoofed mammals. PLOS ONE 8(1): e54784. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0054784

50. Pierce, S.E., Ahlberg, P.E., Hutchinson, J.R., Molnar, J.L., Sanchez, S., Tafforeau, P., Clack, J.A. 2013. Vertebral architecture in the earliest stem tetrapods. Nature 494:226-229. doi: 10.1038/nature11825  (explanatory blog post here: Open database provided at: Dryad Digital Repository-

49. Pierce, S.E., Clack, J.A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2012. Three-dimensional limb joint mobility in the early tetrapod Ichthyostega. Nature 486:523-526. doi: 10.1038/nature11124 (see explanatory webpage at:

48. Doube, M., Yen, S.C.W., Klosowski, M.M., Farke A.A., Hutchinson, J.R., Shefelbine, S.J. 2012. Whole-bone scaling of the avian pelvic limb. Journal of Anatomy 221:21-29. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7580.2012.01514.x

47. Zhang, K.Y., Wiktorowicz-Conroy, A., Hutchinson, J.R., Doube, M., Klosowski, M., Shefelbine, S.J., Bull, A.M.J. 2012. 3D morphometric and posture study of felid scapulae using statistical shape modelling. PLoS ONE 7(4): e34619. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0034619

46. Fujiwara, S. and Hutchinson, J.R. 2012. Elbow joint adductor moment arm as an indicator of forelimb posture in extinct quadrupedal tetrapods. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 269:2561-2570. doi: 10.1098/rspb.2012.0190

45.  Panagiotopoulou, O., Pataky, T.C., Hill, Z. *, Hutchinson, J.R. 2012.  Statistical parametric mapping of the regional distribution and ontogenetic scaling of foot pressures during walking in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Journal of Experimental Biology 215:1584-1593. doi: 10.1242/jeb.065862

44. Molnar, J.L., Pierce, S.E., Clack, J.A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2012. Idealized landmark-based geometric reconstructions of poorly preserved fossil material: A case study of a tetrapod vertebra. Palaeontologia Electronica 15.1.2T. (see explanatory webpage at:

43. Hutchinson, J.R., Delmer, C., Miller, C.E., Hildebrandt, T., Pitsillides, A.A., Boyde, A.J. 2011. From flat foot to fat foot: The structure, ontogeny, function and evolution of elephant “sixth toes.” Science 344:1699-1703. doi: 10.1126/science.1211437 (see explanatory webpage at:

42. Hutchinson, J.R., Bates, K.T., Molnar, J., Allen, V., Makovicky, P.J. 2011. A computational analysis of limb and body dimensions in Tyrannosaurus rex with implications for locomotion, ontogeny, and growth. PLoS One 6(10): e26037. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0026037 (see explanatory webpage at: Important paper correction here:

41. Hutchinson, J.R. 2011. On the inference of function from structure using biomechanical modelling and simulation of extinct organisms. Biology Letters rsbl20110399. doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2011.0399

40. Pierce, S.E., Clack, J.A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2011. Comparative axial morphology in pinnipeds and its correlation with aquatic locomotion behaviour. Journal of Anatomy 219:502-514. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7580.2011.01406.x

39. Fujiwara, S., Endo, H., Hutchinson, J.R. 2011. Topsy-turvy locomotion: biomechanical specializations of the elbow in suspended quadrupeds reflect inverted gravitational constraints. Journal of Anatomy 219:176-191. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7580.2011.01379.x

38. Doube, M., Klosowski, M.M., Wiktorowicz-Conroy, A.M., Hutchinson, J.R., Shefelbine, S.J. 2011. Trabecular bone scales allometrically in mammals and birds. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 278:3067-3073. doi: 10.1098/rspb.2011.0069 Data available at:

37. Pfau, T., Hinton, E. *, Whitehead, C., Wiktorowicz-Conroy, A.M., Hutchinson, J.R. 2011. Temporal gait parameters in the alpaca and the evolution of pacing and trotting locomotion in the Camelidae. Journal of Zoology 283:193–202. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7998.2010.00763.x

36. Souter, T., Cornette, R., Pedraza, J., Hutchinson, J., Baylac, M. 2010. Two applications of 3D semi-landmark morphometrics implying different template designs: the theropod pelvis and the shrew skull. Comptes Rendus Palevol 9:411-422. doi: 10.1016/j.crpv.2010.09.002

35. Doube, M., Klosowski, M.M., Arganda-Carreras, I., Cordelières, F.P., Dougherty, R.P., Jackson, J.S., Schmid, B., Hutchinson, J.R., Shefelbine, S.J. 2010. BoneJ: free and extensible bone image analysis in ImageJ. Bone 47:1076-1079. doi: 10.1016/j.bone.2010.08.023

34. Brusatte, S.L., Norell, M.A., Carr, T.D., Erickson, G.M., Hutchinson, J.R., Bever, G.S., Balanoff, A.M., Xu, X., Makovicky, P.J., Choiniere, J.N. 2010. Tyrannosaur paleobiology: new research on an ancient model organism. Science 329:1481-1485. doi: 10.1126/science.1193304

33. More, H.L., Hutchinson, J.R., Collins, D.F., Weber, D.J., Aung, S.K.H., Donelan, J.M. 2010. Scaling of sensorimotor control in terrestrial mammals. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 277:3563-3568. doi: 10.1098/rspb.2010.0898 Note correction here:

32. Paxton, H.P., Anthony, N.B., Corr, S.A., Hutchinson, J.R. 2010. The effects of selective breeding on the architectural properties of the pelvic limb in broiler chickens: a comparative study across modern and ancestral populations. Journal of Anatomy 217:153-166. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7580.2010.01251.x

31. Ren, L., Miller, C., Lair, R., Hutchinson, J.R. 2010. Integration of biomechanical compliance, leverage, and power in elephant limbs. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 107:7078-7082. (see explanatory webpage at: doi: 10.1073/pnas.0911396107

30. Allen, V., Ellsey, R., Jones, N. *, Wright, J. *, Hutchinson, J.R. 2010. Functional specialisation and ontogenetic scaling of limb anatomy in Alligator mississippiensis. Journal of Anatomy 216:423-445. [cover image] doi : 10.1111/j.1469-7580.2009.01202.x  Note Erratum in J Anat 219:542-547.

29. Pontzer, H., Allen, V., Hutchinson, J.R. 2009. Biomechanics of running indicates endothermy in bipedal dinosaurs. PLoS ONE 4(11): e7783. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0007783

28. Allen, V., Paxton, H., Hutchinson, J.R. 2009. Variation in center of mass estimates for extant sauropsids, and its importance for reconstructing inertial properties of extinct archosaurs. Anatomical Record 292:1442–1461. doi:  10.1002/ar.20973

27. Gatesy, S.M, Baeker, M., Hutchinson, J.R. 2009. Constraint-based exclusion of limb poses for reconstructing theropod dinosaur locomotion. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 29:535-544. doi: 10.1671/039.029.0213

26. Doube, M., Wiktorowicz-Conroy, A.M., Christiansen, P., Hutchinson, J.R., Shefelbine, S. 2009. Three-dimensional geometric analysis of felid limb bone allometry. PLoS ONE 4(3):e4742. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0004742

25. Zhao, G-r., Ren, L., Ren, L-q., Hutchinson, J.R., Tian, L-m., Dai, J.S. 2009. Segmental kinematic coupling of the human spinal column during locomotion. Journal of Bionic Engineering 5:328–334. doi:10.1016/S1672-6529(08)60177-8 

24. Hutchinson, J.R. and V. Allen. 2009. The evolutionary continuum of limb function from early theropods to birds. Naturwissenschaften 96:423-448. doi: 10.1007/s00114-008-0488-3

23. Ren, L., Butler, M., Miller, C., Schwerda, D., Fischer, M., Hutchinson, J.R. 2008. The movements of limb segments and joints during locomotion in African and Asian elephants. Journal of Experimental Biology 211:2735-2751. doi: 10.1242/jeb.01882 Note Error in J Exp Biol 211:3057.

22. Zioupos, P., Cook, R.B., Hutchinson, J.R. 2008. Some basic relationships between density values in cortical and cancellous bone. Journal of Biomechanics 41:1961-1968. doi: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2008.03.025

21. Miller, C.M., Basu, C. *, Fritsch, G., Hildebrandt, T., Hutchinson, J.R. 2008. Ontogenetic scaling of foot musculoskeletal anatomy in elephants. Journal of the Royal Society- Interface 5:465-476. doi:  10.1098/rsif.2007.1220

20. Ren, L. and Hutchinson, J.R. 2008. The three-dimensional locomotor dynamics of African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants reveal a smooth gait transition at moderate speed. Journal of the Royal Society- Interface 5:195–211. doi: 10.1098/?rsif.2007.1095

19. Hutchinson, J.R., Ng-Thow-Hing, V., Anderson, F.C. 2007. A 3D interactive method for estimating body segmental parameters in animals: application to the turning and running performance of Tyrannosaurus rex. Journal of Theoretical Biology 246:660-680. doi:10.1016/j.jtbi.2007.01.023

18. Weissengruber, G.E., Egger, G.F., Hutchinson, J.R., Groenewald, H.B., Elsässer, L., Famini, D., Forstenpointner, G. 2006. The structure of the cushions in the feet of African Elephants (Loxodonta africana). Journal of Anatomy 209:781-792. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7580.2006.00648.x

17. Hutchinson, J.R., Schwerda, D., Famini, D. *, Dale, R.H.I., Fischer, M., Kram, R. 2006. The locomotor kinematics of African and Asian elephants: changes with speed and size. Journal of Experimental Biology 209:3812-3827. doi:10.1242/jeb.02443

16. Hutchinson, J.R. 2006. The evolution of archosaur locomotion. Comptes Rendus Palevol 5:519-530. doi:10.1016/j.crpv.2005.09.002 

15. Carrano M.T., Hutchinson, J.R., Sampson, S.D. 2005. New information on Segisaurus halli, a small theropod dinosaur from the Early Jurassic of Arizona. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 25:835-849. doi: 10.1671/0272-4634(2005)025[0835:NIOSHA]2.0.CO;2

14. Hutchinson, J.R., Anderson, F.C., Blemker, S., Delp, S.L. 2005. Analysis of hindlimb muscle moment arms in Tyrannosaurus rex using a three-dimensional musculoskeletal computer model. Paleobiology 31:676-701. doi: 10.1666/04044.1 Model files openly available at:

13. Payne, R.C., Hutchinson, J.R., Robilliard, J.J., Smith, N.C., Wilson, A.M. 2005. Functional specialisation of pelvic limb anatomy in horses (Equus caballus). Journal of Anatomy 206:557-574. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7580.2005.00420.x

12. Hutchinson, J.R. 2004a. Biomechanical modeling and sensitivity analysis of bipedal running ability. I. Extant taxa. Journal of Morphology 262:421-440. doi: 10.1002/jmor.10241

11. Hutchinson, J.R. 2004b. Biomechanical modeling and sensitivity analysis of bipedal running ability. II. Extinct taxa. Journal of Morphology 262:441-461. [cover image] doi: 10.1002/jmor.10240

10. Hutchinson, J.R., Famini, D. *, Lair, R., Kram, R. 2003. Biomechanics: Are fast-moving elephants really running? Nature 422:493-494.  (see explanatory webpage at: doi:10.1038/422493a

9. Hutchinson, J.R. 2002. The evolution of hindlimb tendons and muscles on the line to crown-group birds. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A 133:1051-1086.

8. Carrano, M.T. and Hutchinson, J.R. 2002. The pelvic and hind limb musculature of Tyrannosaurus rex (Dinosauria: Theropoda). Journal of Morphology 253:207-228. doi: 10.1002/jmor.10018 (one of the most cited recent studies in J. Morph.—see

7. Hutchinson, J.R. and M. Garcia. 2002. Tyrannosaurus was not a fast runner. Nature 415:1018-1021.  doi:10.1038/4151018a (see explanatory webpage at: Note Erratum in Nature 417:349.

6. Hutchinson, J.R. 2001a. The evolution of pelvic osteology and soft tissues on the line to extant birds (Neornithes). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 131:123-168. doi: 10.1111/j.1096-3642.2001.tb01313.x

5. Hutchinson, J.R. 2001b. The evolution of femoral osteology and soft tissues on the line to extant birds (Neornithes). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 131:169-197. doi: 10.1111/j.1096-3642.2001.tb01314.x

4. Farlow, J.O., Gatesy, S.M., Holtz, T.R., Jr., Hutchinson, J.R., Robinson, J.M. 2000. Theropod locomotion. American Zoologist 40:640-663. doi: 10.1093/icb/40.4.640

3. Hutchinson, J.R. and Gatesy, S.M. 2000. Adductors, abductors, and the evolution of archosaur locomotion. Paleobiology 26:734-751. doi: 10.1666/0094-8373(2000)026<0734:AAATEO>2.0.CO;2

2. Padian, K., Hutchinson, J.R., Holtz, T.R., Jr. 1999. Phylogenetic definitions and nomenclature of the major taxonomic categories of the carnivorous Dinosauria (Theropoda). Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 19:69-80.

1. Hutchinson, J.R. and Chiappe, L.M. 1998. The first known alvarezsaurid (Theropoda: Aves) from North America. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 18:447-450.


Book Entries (12):

12. Hutchinson, J.R. 2017. Vertrebrate palaeontology is about more than fossil bones. in A. Cullum and A.W. Martinius, M. Hall, K. Turner. 52 More Things You Should Know About Palaeontology. Agile Libre, Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada.

11. Dilkes, D.W., Hutchinson, J.R., Holliday, C.M., Witmer, L.M. 2012. Reconstructing the musculature of dinosaurs. The Complete Dinosaur, 2nd Edition, pp. 150-190. Indiana University Press.

10. Hutchinson, J.R., Miller, C.E., Fritsch, G., Hildebrandt, T. 2008. The anatomical foundation for multidisciplinary studies of animal limb function: examples from dinosaur and elephant limb imaging studies. In: Frey R., Endo, H. (eds.), Anatomical Imaging: Towards a New Morphology. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, pp. 23-38.

9. Hutchinson, J.R. 2004. Dinosaur locomotion. Encyclopaedia of Life Sciences. Macmillan, London.

8. Hutchinson, J.R. and Gatesy, S.M. 2001. Bipedalism. Enyclopaedia of Life Sciences. Macmillan, London.

7. Hutchinson, J.R. and Padian, K. 1997. Arctometatarsalia. pp. 24-27 in P.J. Currie and K. Padian (eds.). Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs. Academic Press, New York.

6. Padian, K and Hutchinson, J.R. 1997. Bullatosauria. p. 86 in P.J. Currie and K. Padian (eds.). Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs. Academic Press, New York.

5. Hutchinson, J.R. and Padian, K. 1997. Carnosauria. pp. 94-97 in P.J. Currie and K. Padian (eds.). Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs. Academic Press, New York.

4. Hutchinson, J.R. and Padian, K. 1997. Coelurosauria. pp. 129-133 in P.J. Currie and K. Padian (eds.). Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs. Academic Press, New York.

3. Hutchinson, J.R. and Padian, K. 1997. Tetanurae. pp. 727-728 in P.J. Currie and K. Padian (eds.). Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs. Academic Press, New York.

2. Padian, K and Hutchinson, J.R.  1997. Allosauroidea. pp. 6-9 in P.J. Currie and K. Padian (eds.). Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs. Academic Press, New York.

1. Rowe, T., Tykoski, R., Hutchinson, J.R. 1997. Ceratosauria. pp. 106-110 in P.J. Currie and K. Padian (eds.). Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs. Academic Press, New York.


Reports and Book Reviews (10):

10. Hutchinson, J.R. Evolutionary Developmental Biology: Dynasty of the plastic fish. Nature 513:37-38. doi: 10.1038/nature13743

9. Spence, A.J. and Hutchinson, J.R. 2012. Editorial-- A growing size synthesis. Current Biology 22:R309-R314. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2012.03.017

8.  Hutchinson, J.R., Bates, K.T., Allen, V. 2011. Commentary-- T. rex redux: Tyrannosaurus tail portrayals. Anatomical Record 294:756-758. doi: 10.1002/ar.21356

7. Hutchinson, J.R. The significance of the Transjurane highway dinosaur tracksites for studies of dinosaur locomotor behaviour. Rapport d’Expertise, Paléontologie et Transjurane No 23 (11pp.), République et Canton du Jura, Porrentruy, Switzerland. (official advisory report to Swiss government)

6. Zioupos, P., Cook, R.B., Hutchinson, J.R. 2009. Response: More thoughts on the relationship between apparent and material densities in bone. Journal of Biomechanics 42:794-795. doi: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2009.01.014

5. Hutchinson, J.R. 2009. Response: Of ideas, dichotomies, methods, and data – how much do elephant kinematics differ from those of other large animals? Journal of Experimental Biology 212:153-154. doi: 10.1242/?jeb.025098

4. Hutchinson, J.R. and Gatesy, S.M. 2006. Dinosaur locomotion: Beyond the bones. Nature 440: 292-294. (see explanatory webpage at:

3. Hutchinson, J.R. 2005. The Dinosauria, 2nd Ed. Journal of Paleontology 79:1235-1238.

2. Hutchinson, J.R. 2002. Mesozoic Vertebrate Life. Palaeontologia Electronica 5(1) (3 pp.) []

1. Hutchinson, J.R. 2003. Biomechanics: early birds surmount steep slopes. Nature 426:777-778.


Prof. Hutchinson teaches in the BSc/Gateway 1st year course's "Inheritance, Genetics and Evolution" module and the 3rd year BSc course's "Comparative Animal Locomotion" module as well as intermittent teaching elsewhere. His team regularly supervises undergraduate and MSc/MRes student research projects. Potential project students are encouraged to contact him to explore options.

Prof. Hutchinson is passionate about science communication as a vital part of what scientists do for science, for society and for fun.

John regularly participates in science communication events worldwide, both in person and via the internet. His research has been featured in over 500 online/print news stories since 2002, and his team's work has appeared in 18 major TV documentaries including the BAFTA award-winning original "Inside Nature's Giants" programme, the 2015 hit "T. rex Autopsy" and the 2016 smash "Attenborough and the Giant Dinosaur" as well as 2018's "Attenborough and the Giant Elephant", "The Real T. rex With Chris Packham" and Hannibal's Elephant Army: The New Evidence". He was the 2012 winner of the British Science Festival's Charles Darwin Award. John also actively communicates science via social networking such as his personal Twitter account.

John runs a science-related personal blog, too: What's In John's Freezer? And his team has an anatomy blog/social media accounts for general audiences “Anatomy to You”:, Twitter @AnatomyToYou (started in 2016).

He also co-wrote a blog post on "Self-promotion: shame­lessly selfish or shame­fully misunderstood?" Another of his posts, on the recent revival and general popularity of anatomical research, gained wide popularity. Science writer Ed Yong's posts on his team's dissection of a komodo dragon and study of the waddling gaits of penguins are excellent representations of their research.


Prof. Hutchinson was a consultant on Theropod Biomechanics at the American Museum of Natural History's "Dinosaurs: Ancient Fossils, New Discoveries" exhibit, still touring other museums since 2004.

He is also the Chief Paleontology Advisor for the wonderfully interactive "Be the Dinosaur" exhibit, also touring museums in the USA; since 2005: Be the Dinosaur.

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