I am interested in the development of neural stem cells, called neuroblasts (NBs), and the pattern of gliogenesis in the insect brain. By combining techniques such as immunohistochemistry, confocal laser scanning microscopy, and computer-based 3-D reconstruction, I am investigating various aspects of NBs and the architecture of NB-generated lineages building up the central complex in the embryonic grasshopper brain. Development and patterning of glia forms another focus of my research.
I am also collaborating with palaeontologists and zoologists from China (Yunnan University), Germany (LMU Munich, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Ernst-Moritz-Arndt-Universität Greifswald), and the United States (Yale University) to carry out interdisciplinary research projects on Palaeo-neuroanatomy, Palaeo-Evo-Devo, and Palaeo-Ecology. Research material for those projects mainly comes from the early Cambrian Chengjiang biota, China.
I am currently funded by the Junior Researcher Fund within the framework of the Institutional Strategy LMUexcellent.
Associated member of the Munich Center for Neurosciences (since Feb. 2015).