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Dr Raquel Lopez-Antonanzas

Dr Raquel Lopez-Antonanzas

Dr Raquel Lopez-Antonanzas

Research Fellow

Area of research

Palaeobiology and evolution of micromammals

Office LS113
Life Sciences Building,
24 Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 39 41353


Understanding the patterns and causes of biodiversity variation is the main objective of evolutionary biology. The faunal diversification rates fluctuate under the influence of intrinsic (evolutionary novelties) and intrinsic (due to biogeography or climates) factors. I analyze the oscillations in vertebrate biodiversity in the Neogene and attempt to infer their underlying causes. With this end in view, I study the systematics and evolution of a variety of rodent clades since their origin until today and correlate the environmental and tectonic processes with the evolution of the lineages.
Particularly, I study extinct and extant micromammals with a special focus on Subsaharan Africa, the Middle East, and Asia and the Cenozoic. This is an epoch that is characterized by tectonic collisions and orogeneses that have been critical to the evolution of animal life. I conduct taxonomic researches, biodiversity analyses and phylogenetic palaeobiogeography applying cladistic and Bayesian methods always within a time-calibrated framework. This way, I investigate how the fluctuations in biodiversity within fossil communities are related to tectonic and climatic events. These studies focus on the ecosystem evolution of the old world, the connections Africa Europe, and the faunal exchange between Africa and Eurasia (projects: new molecular palaeobiological approach (University of Bristol), Miocene of Lebanon (with the Université libanaise), Miocene of Israel (with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem)).


Higher Education

2004: Ph.D. in Palaeontology
(National Museum of Natural History, Paris, France)

2000: Master of Advanced Studies in Palaeontology
(University of Saragossa, Saragossa, Spain)

1998: Master of Science in Geological Sciences
(Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain)


Academic Experience

Since 2016: CNRS Researcher (UMR 5554 Montpellier)

2014-2016: Marie Curie Research Fellow
(University of Bristol, Bristol, United Kingdom)

2009 – 2014: Ramón y Cajal Researcher
(National Museum of Natural Sciences, Madrid, Spain)

2007 – 2008: Juan de la Cierva Researcher
(National Museum of Natural Sciences, Madrid, Spain)

2005 – 2006: Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Research Fellow
(Bavarian State Collection for Palaeontology and Geology, Munich, Germany)


Honours and Qualifications

Grants and awards (up to €309,235) from a variety of funding bodies (e.g., European Commission, Spanish Government, French Government, La Caixa Foundation).

Certification of outstanding research track record within the framework of the “I3” programme from the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (2013).

Postgraduate Certificate in Education from the University of Saragossa (2002).

Qualification as senior lecturer by the French National Council of the Universities in the sections "Anthropology, Ethnology, Prehistory" (2005-2009), "Solid Earth Sciences" (until 2018), "Population Biology and Ecology" (until 2018), and "Organismal Biology" (until 2018).


Professional Services

Expert Evaluator for the Spanish National Evaluation and Foresight Agency (ANEP).

Reviewer of meeting abstracts and manuscripts submitted to a variety of journals such as Central European Journal of Geosciences, Historical Biology, Journal of Mammalian Evolution, Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, Palaeobiodiversity and PalaeoenvironmentsPaläontologische Zeitschrift, PLOS ONE, Swiss Journal of Palaeontology, Zoologia, and Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society.

Member of the Editorial Board of Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution (as Review Editor; 2013-present) and Zookeys (as Subject Editor; 2014-present).

Member of the organizing committee of the IVth European Workshop on Vertebrate Palaeontology (1999).

Supervisor of students and other learning activities for various institutions (e.g., Paris VI University, Autonomous University of Madrid, Complutense University of Madrid, University of Bristol).

Visiting researcher at numerous institutes in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain, Lebanon, and the United States and director, co-director or participant of field expeditions in Denmark, France, Spain (including the Canary Islands), Greece, Turkey, Lebanon, and Israel.




School of Earth Sciences

Research themes

Recent publications

View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

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