Institution: Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung

Molecular Ecology Group

TBG group members

  • Prof. Dr. Markus Pfenninger
  • Dr. Halina Binde-Doria (TBG-Postdoc on the project)
  • Dr. Ann-Marie Waldvogel (Postdoc on mutation rates)
  • Dr. Barbara Feldmeyer (Postdoc on ant genomics)
  • Dr. Luis Chueca (Postdoc-stipend on the hybridization of land snails)
  • Dennis Lüders (PhD student on hybridization of midges, cats and snails)

TBG project summary

Basically nothing is known about the mutagenic potential of most anthropogenic substances on the genomes of higher organisms, because current tests are inadequate. In our TBG project, we want to use a recently developed mutation rate estimation approach to change this and finally establish this test as ecotox test in standard substance testing. Besides aiming to change the current paradigm of ecotoxicological testing, the project will also significantly contribute to our basic understanding of the mutation process as indispensable precondition of all organismic evolution.

Group expertise / Methods

We are using NGS techniques to

  1. build reference genomes of non-model organisms,
  2. re-sequence individuals and/or
  3.  population pools.
  4. In addition, RNA-seq is used depending on the scientific question.
  5. Other core competences include v) environmental association studies and
  6. ecological and evolutionary experiments.

The data are usually analysed in a population genomics framework with state-of-the-art methods.