I am a sensory biologist at University College London, interested in the molecular bases and mechanistic principles of insect mechanosensation (focus: hearing).
I graduated from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg (Germany) and my diploma subjects (geology, palaeontology, zoology and genetics) had been centred on the theme of evolution. For my PhD at the University of Vienna (Austria) I then turned to spider touch sensation and to the field of mechanosensory biology.
Currently I am a Professor of Sensory Biology & Biophysics at the UCL Ear Institute (London, UK) where we use the fruit fly Drosophila to study mechanotransduction, acoustic communication and sensory entrainment of the circadian clock, thereby exploring both the molecular bases and biological roles of the mechanical senses. In a second research area we are studying hearing and acoustic communication in disease-transmitting mosquitoes. This is part of an effort to develop new tools and strategies to fight some of the deadliest diseases on the planet, such as malaria.