Evolutionary developmental biology

Evolutionary Developmental Biology is a discipline that analyses large-scale morphological evolution from a phylogenetic perspective. Particular emphasis is placed on linking morphological and developmental data within a common phylogenetic framework, in order to illuminate the correlation between the evolution of molecular patterning and the resulting morphological evolution. The subject area also covers palaeontological research with focus on morphological evolution and phylogeny.

Physiological botany

Research in Physiological Botany is directed towards the processes; molecular, cellular and metabolic, which determine the properties of the organism. The subject is centred on research on plants, but traditionally also includes photosynthetic cyanobacteria. Current research is mainly experimental, and includes a broad spectrum of experimental approaches; ranging from genetics, molecular biology and biochemistry, to microscopy. Functional studies, and comparative analyses, based on the genome sequence of Arabidopsis thaliana, are important elements of the research.

Physiology and Environmental toxicology

Comparative physiology encompasses physiological, biochemical and molecular studies on adaptations in different environments by a range of organisms. Studies are performed on whole organisms as well as on tissues or cells and molecules, often by employing molecular, cell biological and proteomic techniques. An important issue is how physiological processes such as for example immune reactions have developed and changed during the course of evolution.

Research in Environmental Toxicology aims to determine how man-made and naturally occurring toxic compounds can disturb cellular functions and give rise to adverse health effects in exposed organisms including humans. The research area includes enzyme-catalysed formation of metabolites which alter structure and function of specific target cells/tissues. Developmental toxicity originating from exposure during sensitive early life-stages is another important field of investigation.


The subject concerns systematics with an emphasis on phylogeny and evolutionary processes at different taxonomic levels. This also includes the description and analysis of biodiversity, molecular studies using single and multiple genes, dating and statistical analysis of evolutionary trees.

Human Evolution and Genetics

Human evolution and genetics is a field focusing on the evolutionary processes which have shaped, and still shapes our own species. The aim is to understand the evolution of humans and hominids, and their demographic history from a genetic perspective using theoretical and empirical studies. These studies investigate the human genome, genetic variation, properties and evolutionary processes. Human interaction and co-evolution with other organisms and phenomena are also studied. The field embraces human genetics, population genetics/genomics, computational biology, molecular genetics, archeogenetics and gene-culture co-evolution. The field also has connections to medicinal genetics, palaeontology, archaeology, anthropology, osteology and evolutionary linguistics.

Last modified: 2023-10-26