The group of Diethard Tautz is interested in the identification and characterization of genes involved in adaptation processes using the house mouse (Mus musculus) as a model system. It applies a broad range of genomic techniques, but also behavioral, morphological and mapping approaches. The characterization of the identified genes includes experiments in semi-natural environments.
Current research of the department is organized in many major projects, which investigate amongst others selective sweep analysis, copy-number evolution, morphology and genes, parallel selection mapping, mating and utrasound communication and de-novo evolution of genes. [more]
Research in the fledgling bioinformatics group is focused on two topics: computational genomics and speciation. In computational genomics we use modern string algorithms based on suffix trees to compare closely related genomes. [more]
A central theme that is developing in the lab is a focus on underdominance (simply, heterozygotes are less fit them homozygotes) in various ways. This includes the theoretical predictions of underdominance in the presence of population structure, possible roles of underdominance in speciation, scans for the genome distribution of underdominance among natural populations of Drosophila melanogaster, and engineering underdominance for the transformation of natural populations. [more]