Research

Our research projects fall into two areas. In Sperm Biology we use experimental evolution and other experimental approaches to understand the significance of environmental (aka lifestyle) effects on sperm function, including infections, diet or atmospheric variation – we coined the term Sperm ecology. Of central importance are oxygen radicals and sperm metabolism, which we measure using laser-induced autofluorescence microscopy FLIM and time-resolved microfluometry.

In Mito-nuclear interactions we focus on mitochondria, our cells’ powerhouses. The interaction of mitochondrial DNA with chromosomal DNA has substantial implications for the so-called mitochondrial replacement therapy (three-parent-baby technology). We aim to combine genetic methods with experimental evolution in order to identify suitable mito-nuclear interactions.

Ecological Lipidology. In collaboration with the Brankatschk lab at BIOTEC and the Wigby lab in Liverpool and the Dobson lab in Glasgow, we have started to become interested in the evolutionary and ecological consequences of lipids.

As a side aspect, Cultural Zoology, we use zoological studies, to inform aspects of the human society, or use cultural aspects to reveal biological particularities.