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WesternU Professor in National Geographic

by Rodney Tanaka

September 23, 2011

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Western University of Health Sciences faculty member Mathew Wedel, PhD, is featured in the October 2011 issue of National Geographic.

The magazine includes a one-page feature on the dinosaur Brontomerus, which was named this spring by Dr. Wedel, assistant professor of anatomy for the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific and the College of Podiatric Medicine, and his colleagues. The feature is in the “Now” section of the print magazine and can also be viewed online at

National Geographic is the magazine that initially fired Wedel’s interest in dinosaurs as a child. The August 1978 issue had a cover story on dinosaurs written by John Ostrom of Yale.

“I don’t know how many copies of that issue I had when I was a kid. I’d read one over and over again until it fell apart and then Mom would find another copy at a garage sale,” Wedel said. “It is no exaggeration to say that it set the course of my life.”

Wedel met Ostrom in 2000 and told him how he was inspired by his 1978 cover story.

“He said that because old age was slowing him down a bit, he felt like he lived vicariously through ‘youngsters’ like me,” Wedel said. “I never saw him again in person, but we continued to correspond and remained friends until his death in 2005.

“To have my work on dinosaurs featured in National Geographic is more than an honor, it’s the completion of a circle that started when I was 3 years old and has shaped my entire life,” Wedel said.

To read more about Dr. Wedel and Brontomerus, click here

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