The epigenomes of twins Mark and Scott Kelly were examined during the NASA Twins Study.
© NASA/Robert Markowitz
15.10.2018 in Science, Research, Context

Epigenetics

Epigenetics is an emerging branch of biological research. Its findings will help us understand how information outside DNA can be passed on from cell to cell throughout a person’s life and partially even inherited from generation to generation. Bioinformatician Professor Ivo Grosse explains what epigenetic modifications are all about and how they can be affected by environmental factors. Read more

Many bacteria that live in and on the human body have yet to be identified.
© Colourbox.com
08.03.2017 in Science, Context

Context: The Microbiome

Every human being shares his or her body with a countless number of tiny organisms, for example, bacteria. Up until a few years ago their significance was unrecognised. Today we know that bacteria can significantly impact a person’s health and even their behaviour. Gary Sawers, a professor of microbiology, explains why. Read more

The students conducting their fieldwork near Balgstädt.
© Maike Glöckner
13.10.2016 in Featured, Research, Science

Measuring nature

Crickets chirp at the edge of the forest, otherwise all is quiet in the Nature Park Saale Unstrut Triasland. Nine students from the University of Halle are working intently despite the midday heat. It is their last day in the field and there is still a lot left to do. In the master’s module Outdoor Ecology the up-and-coming biologists are learning what it means to conduct fieldwork in four investigation areas near Freyburg. Read more

Gen scissors can be used to alter DNA.
© Colourbox.com
13.10.2016 in Science, Context

Context: CRISPR/Cas9 gene scissors

Gene scissors derived from bacterial “CRISPR/Cas” systems are considered to be a revolutionary discovery in the field of biosciences. It has never been easier to modify the genetic material of plants, animals or humans. Dr Johannes Stuttmann from the Institute of Biology explains the technique as well as its advantages and disadvantages. Read more

“I am only interested in animals, insects and microorganisms if they affect my plants” – Tiffany Knight in one of the greenhouses of the Botanical Garden in Halle
© Markus Scholz
24.03.2016 in People, Science

Fascinated by plants

Humboldt Professor Tiffany Knight studies the changes of ecosystems over long periods of time and the effects that a loss of biodiversity may have on the ecosystem. In February 2016, the affiliation of the renowned US-scientist changed from the Midwestern US to Central Germany. She is now working at the German Center of Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig. Read more

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