Metabolism and stress responses
The major aim of the project is to understand how diverse environmental signals affect the physiology of the organism and how this is related to the development of diseases such as diabetes or obesity.
One major focus is on the role of different hormones (or transmitters) that take the task to translate these informations into a suited physiological response. These hormones include octopamine and tyramine (invertebrate counterparts of epinephrine/ norepinephrine) and dopamine. Deregulation of their synthesis or release are associated with obesity (octopamine and tyramine) or neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease (dopamine).
Moreover, we focus on the role of certain nutritional interventions in this context. Nutritional interventions such as caloric restriction (CR) are known to increase the lifespan and to postpone ageing. Using the fruit fly as a model system we aim to understand the molecular framewok underlying these processes.
In addition, we recently introduced the marine flatworm Macrostomum lignano in order to study the response to different environmental stress situations.
Gerald Rimbach (Kiel, Germany), Ulf Bickmeyer (Wilhelmshaven, Germany)