Biology at ISTA encompasses a wide variety of research areas, from structural and molecular biology to cell and development biology to systems and evolutionary biology.
Biology is the largest track in the PhD program, and students benefit from a vibrant research community with collaborations within and across sub-fields. State-of-the-art facilities and interactions with mathematics, computer science and physics allow scientists to address complex problems with interdisciplinary scope.
COMPLETE BIOLOGY RESEARCH GROUP DETAILS ON ISTA’S MAIN SITE:
- Evolutionary Genetics
- Plant Developmental Biology
- RNA-based Gene Regulation
- Social Immunity
- High-Resolution Optical Imaging for Biology
- Genes, Circuits, and Behavior
MARIO DE BONO
- Genes in the Environment
- Developmental and Cell Biology of Plants
- Systems and Synthetic Biology of Genetic Networks
- Physical Principles in Biological Systems
- Morphogenesis in Development
- Protein Homeostasis and Aging
- Genetic Dissection of Cerebral Cortex Development
- Tissue Growth and Developmental Pattern Formation
- Evolutionary Genetics
- Self-Organization of Protein Systems
- Medical Genomics
- Computational Soft and Living Matter
- Structural Biology of Membrane Protein Complexes
- Biomolecular Mechanisms from Integrated NMR Spectroscopy
- Structural Biology of Cell Migration and Viral Infection
- Neuroimmunology in Health and Disease
- Cellular Morphodynamics
- Evolution, Development and Function of Motor Circuits
- Information Processing in Biological Systems
- Sex-Chromosome Biology and Evolution
- Epigenetics and Chromatin
Here is a video presenting the Biology study track. In case you cannot access YouTube, this video is also available here.
Here is a video presenting the Barton group, which study diverse topics in evolutionary genetics. The video has been shot by recent ISTA PhD graduate Eniko Edelsbrunner.
Arabidopsis Root Growth
To track the growth of plant roots, the Friml group— in cooperation with the Bioimaging Scientific Service Unit—developed a confocal microscope setup for vertical sample mounting. In addition, they developed a custom software called TipTracker, which can automatically track moving objects and record time-lapse series.
Using this setup, it is possible to study the growth of Arabidopsis roots under different gravity (through rotation of the sample) and light conditions. In addition, TipTracker can even be used to study other non-plant samples, such as zebrafish embryos—an animal model used by one of our PhD students, Vanessa Barone (Heisenberg group), to study embryonic development.
Watch a time-lapse video showing root growth over time, produced using TipTracker.
The work was produced by Daniel von Wangenheim, Robert Hauschild, Matyas Fendrych, Vanessa Barone, and Jiri Friml. Read the original paper here: https://doi.org/10.1101/116285
Ant queens bury dead to prevent disease
PhD student, Cremer Group
Christopher Pull published a study in the open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology (DOI: 10.1186/s12862-017-1062-4), which suggests that ant queens may bury other queens to prevent pathogen transmission.
The full press release can be found here on the ISTA main website.