My main research interests are to decipher the circadian clock on the molecular and neuronal network level, to understand how it is synchronized to the environmental cycles on earth (mainly to the Zeitgebers light and temperature) and how it controls behaviour. Most studies are performed on the model organism Drosophila melanogaster. In further studies we examine the neuronal network of the circadian clock of other insects, mainly social insects that show a photoperiodic diapause.
Special interests are:
- The role of neuropeptides in the clock network of Drosophila melanogaster
- The role of dopamine, serotonine and glia cells in the regulation of sleep in Drosophila melanogaster
- The role of rhodopsins and cryptochrome for synchronizing the clock to natural-like light-dark cycles
- Organisation and function of the clock in divers bee and ant species
- Organisation and function of the clock in divers photoperiodic insects like aphids, fire bugs and different fly species
- The importance of the circadian clock network for measurment of day length and the adaptation to seasonal changes