Biology of Aging

We pioneered the development of the annual fish Nothobranchius furzeri as a novel model organism for aging research. My research group extensively characterized various aging phenotypes in N. furzeri, demonstrating that this model accurately recapitulates key aspects of vertebrate aging at cellular and behavioral levels. Additionally, we investigated the impact of non-genetic interventions on lifespan and aging marker expression, effectively showcasing the malleability of aging in this species. Furthermore, our investigation into different populations of N. furzeri revealed intriguing differences in cellular aging and lifespan evolution in response to habitat humidity, providing vital information for analyzing the N. furzeri genome and identifying genomic adaptations associated with cellular senescence and lifespan.
Subsequently, the sequencing of the N. furzeri genome and the establishment of transgenic techniques elevated the status of this species as a game-changer for the study of adult phenotypes. As a result, a collaborative international community has emerged around N. furzeri, leveraging its unique attributes to test the effects of experimental manipulations on aging associated phenotypes. Notably, scientists who were trained as graduate students in our group made significant and valuable contributions to the widespread adoption and dissemination of this model organism.
Our research approach seamlessly blends experimental, genetic, and computational techniques, yielding several groundbreaking findings in the field of aging research.