Research & Software

Current Research

Coming soon!

Past Research Projects

Dynamics of Gene Families in the Evolution of Termite Eusociality

As part of an international genome project, I used a variety of comparative genomics methods to investigate the evolution of eusociality in termites. My main focus was the evolution of gene families. To this end, I clustered 19 insect proteomes into gene families and modelled family evolution across the phylogeny. I found many families related to chemoperception, immunity and diet that showed a significant size change in termites. My results contributed to our recent publication in Nature Ecology & Evolution.

Summary figure of our cockroach and termite genome project. Click to enlarge.

Development of a Proteome Quality Assessment Tool

I developed the prototype of DOGMA, a Python tool that assesses the quality of proteomes and transcriptomes. This is achieved by finding highly conserved protein domains and domain arrangements that occur in all eukaryotic model organisms. DOGMA screens a given proteome or transcriptome for this set to estimate its completeness. My prototype was further developed by Elias Dohmen. DOGMA is available online and published in Bioinformatics. The DOGMA-scores of over 3,200 proteomes are now available on the Proteome Quality Index website.

Schematic illustration of the DOGMA algorithm.

Development of a Python Library for Computational Proteomics

In a team of five, I developed Ursgal, a Python library that offers a scriptable interface to common bottom-up proteomics tools such as peptide search engines and statistical post-processing tools. This facilitates the development of custom proteomics workflows in a few lines of code. Ursgal is freely available on GitHub and published in the Journal of Proteome Research.

Schematic overview of ursgal's capabilities.


Publication Profiles: