Research

I study biology through mathematical models. My main focus is on investigating stochastically induced phenomena as extinction or invasion of genetic traits or species. To put it (even) more broadly: I am interested in noise in populations and cells.

My fields of application can be split into Biochemical Systems, Ecology and Evolution. Most of my models are built on individual based dynamics and their large population approximations.

Biochemical Systems
The explicit quantification of noise (variance) in gene regulatory systems is accessible through quite recent developments of probabilistic techniques. Applying these to shed more light on gene regulation is what I am currently interested in.

Ecology & Evolution
One of the most interesting current concepts (in my opinion) is the connection of ecological processes and evolutionary dynamics. Studying fixation probabilities of traits in these scenarios poses a great challenge due to the increased complexity as opposed to usual evolutionary models. More precisely I try to answer the following question: how does demographic or environmental stochasticity affect evolutionary dynamics?

Evolution
Stable coexistence of traits within a population is a fascinating phenomenon. Tpyically some sort of balancing selection is underlying the evolutionary dynamics preventing the extinction of rare types. I am interesting in all sorts of balancing selection and within this context I try to understand and quantify how stable (in terms of extinction times) these coexistence states are.