Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Experimentelle Biophysik

Arno Munhoven



Room:    005


Tel:       (030) 2093 98282

The avian visual system has evolved into a highly efficient organ, adept at converting environmental cues like light and the geomagnetic field into signals processed by the bird's brain. This information is vital for the long-range navigation of migrating birds covering extensive distances to and from their wintering habitats. While the molecular mechanism underlying magnetoperception remains a tantalizing mystery, it presents an intriguing area for investigation.
It is plausible that certain proteins within the detection and signaling pathways of the avian compass also play a role in the bird's light-detection pathways, and vice versa. Hence, my research is dedicated to elucidating whether rhodopsin photoreceptors contribute to magnetic field detection. This involves the expression and purification of potential detectors and signaling proteins like cryptochromes and rhodopsins in various systems, including bacterial, yeast, or human cells, followed by comprehensive biochemical and biophysical assessments.