Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology

Research publications

You can find more research publications messages on the website of the Institute:

Research publications 2017

Life on the edge prepares plants for climate change

December 18, 2017

Genetic variability supports plant survival during droughts [more]


Precision breeding needed to adapt corn to climate change

August 03, 2017

It took 2000 years to successfully grow maize in northern climates [more]

Research publications 2016

Is evolution predictable?

July 06, 2016

Yearbook article 2016, Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology
Author: Richard Neher [more]


“The end product is what matters”

April 12, 2016

Detlef Weigel, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology, explains why genome editing offers a targeted way of breeding better crops [more]


Mating without males decreases lifespan

February 26, 2016

Roundworm species reproducing self-fertilization instead of mating with males have shorter lifespans [more]


A worm with five faces

January 15, 2016

Max Planck scientists discover new roundworm species on Réunion [more]

Research publications 2015

A vocabulary of ancient peptides

December 23, 2015

Max Planck scientists identify fragments of proteins that already existed billions of years ago [more]


Observing evolution in real time

December 17, 2015

Scientists analyze the dynamics of HI-virus adaptation [more]


Plants defend their territory with toxic substances

November 05, 2015

Plant toxins block histone deacetylases of neighboring plants and influence their growth negatively [more]

Research publications 2014

Plant immunity comes at a price

November 20, 2014

An overzealous immune system can be deadly [more]


Calculating evolution

November 12, 2014

Programme predicts the development of influenza viruses [more]

Climate change alters the ecological impacts of seasons

October 08, 2014

Max Planck paper observes temperature variability across the world



How the zebrafish gets its stripes

August 28, 2014

Max Planck scientists uncover how beautiful colour patterns can develop in animals [more]


Protein evolution follows a modular principle

July 22, 2014

Similarities between proteins reveal that their great diversity has arisen from smaller building blocks [more]


Eye evolution: a snapshot in time

June 06, 2014

Scientists of the Max Planck Institute are studying the visual system of marine annelids to gain insights into the evolution of eyes [more]


Colour matters

January 24, 2014

Colourful guppy males have the highest number of offspring [more]

Research publications 2013

One worm, two mouths

November 07, 2013

A devious evolutionary path between genetics and environment [more]


A matter of timing

September 25, 2013

To bloom or not to bloom? Max Planck researchers discover how flowering time is affected by temperature [more]


Big name for a small worm

July 09, 2013

Biologists in Tübingen name a newly discovered threadworm after physicist Max Planck [more]


“Whodunnit” of Irish potato famine solved

May 21, 2013

An international team of scientists reveals that a unique strain of potato blight they call HERB-1 triggered the Irish potato famine of the mid-nineteenth century [more]


Sugar influences the onset of flowering

February 07, 2013

Only when light, age and energy conditions are right do plants flower [more]


The neurobiological consequence of predating or grazing

January 17, 2013

Scientists from Tuebingen compare neuronal network connections in two worm species [more]

Research publications 2012

MicroRNAs in plants: Regulation of the regulator

November 08, 2012

A phosphate switch to fine-tune the protein production in the cells [more]


Populations survive despite many deleterious mutations

August 10, 2012

Max Planck scientist investigates the evolutionary model of Muller’s ratchet [more]

Research publications 2011

Simple nerve cells regulate swimming depth of marine plankton

October 17, 2011

Ciliary beating of Platynereis gives insights into an ancestral state of nervous system evolution [more]


Epigenetic changes don’t last

September 20, 2011

First comprehensive inventory of epigenetic changes over several generations shows that these often do not last and therefore probably have limited effects on long-term evolution [more]


Insect gut microbe with a molecular iron reservoir

September 01, 2011

Max Planck researchers analyze the structure of an iron storage protein [more]


1001 Genome-Project – On the way to a complete catalog of the Arabidopsis genome

August 28, 2011

Thanks to its flexible genome the plant can adapt to various environmental conditions [more]


How the modular structure of proteins permits evolution to move forward

July 26, 2011

The development of identical egg laying organs of two nematode species is regulated by different signaling pathways [more]


Evolution can cause a rapid reduction in genome size

April 21, 2011

Despite being closely related to the lyre-leaved rock cress, the thale cress has a considerably smaller genome [more]


Plant hormone auxin triggers a genetic switch

April 18, 2011

A mechanism for stabilising the development of the plant organism [more]

Research publications 2010

A worm bites off enough to chew

July 01, 2010

Max Planck researchers have uncovered an ingenious evolutionary trick [more]


Antagonists cooperate

June 24, 2010

Plant growth hormones: stem cell researchers elucidate complex interaction between auxin and cytokinin [more]


The dilemma of plants fighting infections

June 03, 2010

Scientists from Tübingen reveal an evolutionary dilemma: plants that are more resistant to disease grow more slowly and are less competitive than susceptible relatives when enemies are rare [more]


An island as a reflection of the world

May 19, 2010

On Réunion biologists are studying biological diversity with the help of a very unremarkable creature: the nematode [more]


How plants put down roots

March 15, 2010

Tübingen-based developmental geneticists research organ development in the plant embryo [more]


The roots of food security

January 27, 2010

Max Planck scientists discovered how certain hormones control aspects of root branching in plants [more]

Research publications 2009

Evolution caught in the act

December 31, 2009

US-German team measures how quickly genomes change [more]


A facial expression is worth a thousand words

December 22, 2009

Moving pictures are more suitable to interpret the mood of a person than a static photograph. [more]


Mirror carp with gene in reserve

September 03, 2009

A back-up copy protects the carp against the effects of mutations and ensures sparse squamation [more]


The blossoms of maturity

August 20, 2009

A new signaling pathway ensures that plants remember to flower - even without positive signals from the environment [more]


Walking in circles

August 20, 2009

Scientists from Tübingen show that people really walk in circles when lost [more]


Getting to the bottom of rice

July 23, 2009

Global rice research community provides critical tools to unravel the diversity of rice [more]

Research publications 2008

Formula discovered for longer plant life

September 23, 2008

Molecular biologists from Tübingen have discovered how the growth of leaves and the aging process of plants are coordinated [more]


Insight into the evolution of parasitism

September 22, 2008

Molecular biologists have decoded the genome of a nematode living in beetles [more]


Artificial micro RNAs in plant breeding

March 20, 2008

A new tool for rice genetics allows rice breeders to surgically inactivate genes that confer unwanted properties [more]

Research publications 2007

Dangerous Liaisons

September 04, 2007

A German-American research collaboration discovers how the immune system can drive the formation of new species [more]


One species, many genomes

July 20, 2007

Adaptation to the environment has a stronger effect on the genome than anticipated [more]

Research publications 2005

Max Planck Researchers Make a Breakthrough in Plant Stem Cell Research

December 21, 2005

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in Tübingen, Germany have determined how plants regulate how many stem cells they have [more]


Long sought-after flowering signal found

August 11, 2005

A team of German and British scientists show how plants ensure that flowers are formed at the right time and the right place [more]

Research publications 2004

Major boost for European zebrafish research

February 09, 2004

European Commission awards 12 million Euros to study zebrafish models for human development and disease [more]


A Killer Microbe as a Living Antibiotic

January 29, 2004

Predatory bacteria may give rise to novel protein-based anti-microbial substances [more]

Research publications 2003

Watching social behaviour evolve

September 04, 2003

Evolution of bacterial cooperation observed in laboratory first-hand by Max Planck scientists [more]


MicroRNAs - Tiny molecules shape up plants

August 21, 2003

A team of German and US scientists demonstrates that development and growth of plants is controlled by tiny pieces of RNAs [more]


The mechanical switch in the ear

June 13, 2003

Max Planck scientists have discovered the elusive channel that converts mechanical energy into electrical signals in sensory hair cells [more]

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