In the research focus on Evolutionary Biology, the Department of Biology analyzes the causes of the formation and conservation of biological diversity: Which genomic and functional mechanisms adapt individuals and populations to their environment? Which strategies guarantee their survival? What relationships exist between different organisms? How do boundaries emerge between species and why can they be overcome? What are the consequences of hybridization?
In order to answer these questions, behavioral and human biology investigates functions and mechanisms of individual decision strategies that serve to maximize reproductive fitness. In evolutionary biology, physiology and population genomics, adaptations to environmental conditions and their genomic signatures are analyzed. Here, as in biodiversity research, the reconstruction of species splits and species boundaries with molecular methods, but also on the basis of structural features play a decisive role. The reasons and consequences of the fusion of evolutionary lines by hybridization are analyzed jointly by different research units.
The following research units contribute to the research focus of Evolutionary Biology:
- Behavioural Biology
- Biodiversity, Evolution and Ecology
- Biodiversity of Crop Plants
- Experimental Biological Oceanography
- History of Science
- Molecular Evolutionary Biology
- Population Genomics
- Plankton ecology and evolution
- Systematics and Evolution of Plants
The following associated professorships contribute to the research focus of Evolutionary Biology: