Research interests

  • Disease ecology
  • Microbiome-pathogen interactions
  • Host disease resistance
  • Population genetics
  • Host-virus co-evolution

 

Scientific projects

As an important reservoir of diseases with zoonotic potential, bats have come into the focus of research - most recently enforced by the Corona pandemic. They represent the second largest mammalian order after rodents, often live together in colonies of millions and are highly mobile. Understanding the factors that influence disease transmission, virus evolution, reservoir ecology, and host switching is central to gaining functional insights into zoonotic potential. In this context, as it is a major contributor to host immune defense, the gut microbiota is of particular interest.

I am investigating how infection with coronaviruses affects genetic diversity and the microbiome in an African bat complex. To this end, thousands of bat tissue and fecal samples were collected from various caves in Ghana during intensive fieldwork and are now being analyzed. Genetic background, co-infections with other viruses, pathogens or parasites as well as environmental effects will be considered, allowing us to discriminate between phylogenetic, environmental, intrinsic and virus-related effects.
 

Contact

  • Dr. Magdalena Meyer
    Institute of Evolutionary Ecology
    and Conservation Genomics
    University of Ulm
    Albert-Einstein-Allee 11
    89081 Ulm
    Germany
    Tel: 0731 - 50 22 641
    Email: magdalena.meyer () uni-ulm.de