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Latest Projects

Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2012-12-01 - 2013-10-30

The project "development in flood prone areas: assessment of flood management alternatives" has the goal to develope integrated strategies to reduce flood risk at the federal level to support the implementation of the EU flood risk directive. Previous project have shown the necessity to analyse and to assess the various flood risk management alternatives. There seems to be also the need for an improved communication and cooperation among the various actors in this domain. The instruments should be assesed with respect to legislative and economic criteria and their potential for integrated application to reduce flood risk. The deficits of the instruments should be assessed especially in APSFR regions.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2017-07-01 - 2019-06-30

Cellular DNA is tightly packed with histones, proteins directly involved in regulation of gene expression with impact on numerous biological processes including cell differentiation, epigenetics and disease development. In particular, histones achieve this regulation by various types and combinations of post-translational modifications that are interpreted by interactions with specific effector proteins. Despite their pivotal role in different biological contexts, effects of histone modifications on recruitment of effectors at the atomistic level remains elusive. Here, our main goal is to further our understanding of microscopic mechanisms determining the function of histone modifications. To do this, we will use molecular dynamics simulations, a widely used high-resolution computational method for studying biomolecular properties and behavior at the atomistic level. More specifically, we intend to systematically investigate how different histone modifications and combinations thereof affect interactions with related effectors. In addition, histone effectors dedicated to recognition of lysine methylation and acetylation have been recently shown as promising targets for small molecule drugs. To this end, we intend to use molecular dynamics simulations to model interactions of effectors with known active molecules in order to examine binding mechanism as well as explore binding of other compounds by using perturbation free energy calculations.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2017-11-15 - 2021-11-14

In order to understand the mechanisms underlying the climate cycles that have punctuated the Quaternary period, we need to unravel the geographical extent and test for interhemispheric phasing of glacial events. New glacier records from southern Patagonia suggest that maximum glacial extent during the last glacial cycle occurred sometime during the Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 3. In this context, new data from the southern mid-latitudes in Patagonia, and New Zealand, reaffirm the important unsolved question regarding the timing, structure and duration of the local glacial maximum in the southern mid-latitudes: When did the local glacial maximum occur in the region? Why have only scattered sites in Patagonia revealed glacial expansion during MIS 3? Is the new glacier evidence from these scattered southern Patagonian sites a local anomaly or have we not yet completely unraveled the complete configuration of the southern Andean LGM? In this regard, the main goal of the research project is to determine the timing of the local last glacial maximum along the Patagonian Andes (43-55ºS). In order to accomplish this objective the proposed research includes the following interconnected approaches: glacial geomorphology, glacial stratigraphy, geochronology and glacial modeling. By selecting sites along a latitudinal transect we aim to include the latitudinal as well as the local factors that may control the Patagonian glaciation. We address this issue by applying a 3D Parallel Ice Sheet Model (PISM), constrained by precise mapping and well-dated glacial landforms. We will apply 10Be exposure-cosmogenic dating on boulders resting on moraines, OSL and 10Be dating in glaciofluvial sediments. We expect our composite approach will allow us to bracket the timing of the local LGM extent in Patagonia and thereby test for regional, hemispherical and global phasing of maximum glaciation during the last ice age.

Supervised Theses and Dissertations