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The wife of a Penn professor was found murdered in her Main Line home late last week.

The victim, Ellen Robb, was the wife of Rafael Robb, who teaches in the Economics Department.

Her body was found Friday afternoon, and authorities told The Philadelphia Inquirer that, according to the autopsy, her death resulted from being beaten with a long, cylindrical object. The autopsy also showed that Ellen Robb had attempted to fight back against her attacker.

Rafael Robb told Montgomery County authorities he called the police at about 1:45 p.m. Friday after returning home and discovering his wife's dead body; he also said he last saw his wife Friday morning before heading to work.

The couple lived at 670 Forrest Road in the Wayne section of Upper Merion Township.

Ellen Robb, 49, was a stay-at-home mother to the couple's 12-year-old daughter.

As of yesterday, prosecutors were continuing their search for both the murder weapon and other discarded bloody items, according to the Inquirer. They are questioning neighbors and searching the home and surrounding wooded area.

Also as of yesterday, no suspect or motive had yet been identified.

Some newspapers have reported that the Robbs' marriage was estranged.

University spokeswoman Lori Doyle said, "It's a very tragic situation. Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to professor Robb and his family."

Doyle added that, because Penn is currently closed for winter break, there has been no University response to news of the murder.

Professor Robb, who is identified as "Rafael Rob" on the Economics Department's Web site, specializes in game theory, industrial organization, law and economics and public economies. He has taught undergraduate classes such as Intermediate Microeconomics and Microeconomic Theory.

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