Ralph Bock: In my talk, I will describe an example of how unexpected discoveries in basic research can facilitated novel applications in biotechnology and synthetic biology. My laboratory has a long-standing interest in developing experimental approaches to study genome evolution in real time, a research area we refer to as ‘experimental evolution’. I will explain how this research led to the discovery of DNA migration between plants and the asexual (so-called ‘horizontal’) movement of genomes. I will describe our current knowledge about the underlying mechanisms, and discuss the role of gene and genome transfer events in the generation of natural diversity and the formation of new species. Finally, I will show how horizontal genome transfer can be employed as a versatile tool in plant biotechnology and synthetic biology.
Science2Go is an informal lecture series presenting scientific research currently being conducted at the Potsdam Science Park. These lectures are intended for researchers and staff or local individuals interested in learning about what is going on at the Park. Come on over and gain insight into various research topics and neighbouring institutes.