Elisabeth Hempel
PhD student
Evolutionary and Adaptive Genomics Group
Department of Biochemistry & Biology
University of Potsdam
Haus 29, Raum 2.69
Email: elis.hempelposteoorg
Phone: +49 (0) 331 977 2643

MSc Organismic Biology, Philipps University Marburg, Germany
BSc Biology, Philipps University Marburg, Germany

Research interests
My PhD is focused on the effects of Pleistocene climatic cycles on African mammal evolution. It is a joint project with the Natural History Museum in Berlin. In particular I am interested in Hippotragin antelopes. I investigate population history and phylogeographic structure of the different species, extant as well as extinct members of the tribe, and aim to relate those to climatic cycles during the Pleistocene. To achieve this I am extracting and sequencing DNA from fresh samples as well as from historical and ancient museum specimens from the Holocene and Pleistocene using NGS technology, including whole genome sequencing.


  • Hempel, E., Bibi, F., Faith, J.T., Brink, J.S., Kalthoff, D.C.,Kamminga, P, Paijmans, J.L.A., Westbury, M.V., Hofreiter, M. & Zachos, F.E. (2021) Identifying the true number of specimens of the extinct blue antelope
    (Hippotragus leucophaeus). Scientific Reports 11: 2100. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-80142-2
  • Çoraman, E., Dietz, Chr., Hempel E., Ghazaryan, A., Levin, E., Presetnik, P., Zagmajster M. & Mayer, F. (2019) Reticulate evolutionary history of a Western Palaearctic Bat Complex explained by multiple mtDNA introgressions in secondary contacts. Journal of Biogeogeography 46 (2): 343-354.  doi.org/10.1111/jbi.13509