© Carsten Kemena/Erich Bornberg-Bauer, IEB

B1 Benefits and hazards of novel protein coding genes

PI: Prof. Dr. Erich Bornberg-Bauer
Research Group: Molecular Evolution and Bioinformatics
Co-PI: Prof. Dr. Monika Stoll
Doctoral students: Daniel Dowling, Katrin Berk

While it is widely assumed that most protein-coding genes evolve and provide adaptive benefits by duplication and series of small successive changes, recent research has shown that novel genes, either arising by rearrangements of old ones or by de novo creation from previously non-coding DNA (or both) may occur and provide strong adaptive benefits too. This project will investigate the prevalence, possible effects and modes of fixation of such newly arising genes in humans and in particular between humans by comparing contemporary human genomes with palaeogenomes such as Neanderthals or Denisovan. Furthermore, it will look into possible side-effects and causes of diseases such as allergies or other immune-related maladies of such "two-edged blades" in our genomes.