Subject areas for theses
Electrocardiogram or electromyogram from respiratory muscles in bumblebees: possible use for highly sensitive bio assays of pheromone sensitivity.
The evolution of jumping in grasshoppers and crickets: morphological analysis of fossil and extant material under the perspective of the biomechanics of jumping.
Speciation in European grasshoppers: was postglacial emergence of sibling Chorthippus species supported by changes in the temperature dependency of the key enzyme hexokinase?
Traumatic brain injury in crickets: may brain injury in insects serve as model system for understanding and therapy of traumatic brain injury in humans?
Modelling of neuronal networks for motor control: the locust flight oscillator demonstrates that modelling approaches can be crucial for a detailed understanding of network properties.
Action of modern insecticides: what neuronal structures are affected by insecticides, and are these effects actually restricted to pest species?
Navigation in desert ants: how do optic flow perceived by the eyes and stride integration interact in distance measurement? And how are olfactory cues and wind cues used in finding back to a plentiful food source?
Field work in the Tunisian desert at the basis of these projects is dependent on the future political situation in Tunisia.
Signals of the nervous system, which control immune-metabolic crosstalk, and allow metabolic adaptation to nutrient limitation and abundance
This project aims to understand the neurological roots of insulin resistance and impaired body weight control. We aim to define the physiology of the interplay between immune cells and metabolic organs, and identify neuroendocrine signals which control this interaction. Applied techniques: in vitro preadipocyte-, adipocyte-, and macrophage culture; analysis of RNA transcription; ELISA; flow cytometry, immunohistochemistry; Western blotting; massive data analysis; image analysis. Thesis topics are offered for Biochemistry Msc; Biology Msc and Advanced Materials Msc students.