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Biocommunicaton Research Group

The central conceptual focus of our research program is on biological communication and understanding how information transfer via cues and signals mediates interspecific ecological interactions. Our empirical work focuses primarily on the role of chemical signaling (especially volatile chemistry and olfaction) in mediating interactions among plants, insects, and microbes. To explore this topic we employ diverse research techniques ranging from molecular biology and analytical chemistry to behavioral and studies and field ecology. Our ultimate goal is to generate basic knowledge about the ecology and evolution of chemical signaling that also has practical relevance for pressing societal challenges, including sustainable food production, disease emergence and transmission, and ecological sustainability in the face of rapid environmental change.

Entomological Collection

Our group also oversees the ETH Zürich Entomological Collection, which is one of the largest and most important insect collections in Central Europe, with more than 2,000,000 specimens, including  more than 5000 type specimens. In addition to serving as a valuable resource for researchers from around the world, the collection is actively engaged in a wide range of educational and public outreach activities.

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