I study biology through mathematical models, primarily stochastically induced phenomena like extinction or invasion of genetic traits or species.
My fields of application are Biochemical Systems (gene regulatory networks), Ecology and Evolution, and Epidemiology. Most of my models are built on individual-based dynamics and their large population approximations.
The explicit quantification of noise (variance) in gene regulatory systems is accessible through recent developments of probabilistic techniques. Applying these to shed more light on gene regulation is part of what I studied during my PhD.
One of the most interesting 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 or the interaction of different species affect the evolutionary dynamics?
Stable coexistence of traits within a population is a fascinating phenomenon. Typically 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.
I have redirected parts of my research to study COVID-19 during the initial phase of the pandemic in 2020. I was involved in projects concerning the viral spread within and between hosts.