Universiteit Leiden

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Research programme

Animal Sciences & Health

We perform multidisciplinary research at molecular, cellular, and organismal levels of animal biology to increase fundamental understanding of health and disease.

Annemarie Meijer

The Animal Sciences & Health research programme fosters collaboration between researchers with expertise in molecular cell biology, immunology, physiology, behavioural biology, and evo-devo research. Research in this cluster is organised in three primary research themes. In the first theme, Mechanisms of Disease, we aim to increase understanding of the biological mechanisms that are involved in maintenance of health and associated with diseases in which developmental processes, metabolism, and the immune system play a major role. In the second theme, Behaviour and Cognition, we gain insight into the proximate and ultimate factors underlying animal behaviour and cognition, and the consequences of anthropogenic changes in environment on physiology and behaviour. The final theme, Development and Evolution, aims to elucidate how genetic changes in developmental mechanisms drive the evolution of new functions and phenotypes.

The zebrafish is the model organism that forms the connection between all disciplines in the research cluster and has strong translational value for research into human development and disease. For a number of specific research questions we also employ other animal models, including invertebrate species and birds, especially the zebra finch.

Connection with other research

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