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Research Team Dilthey

The Research Group Dilthey works at the interface between new sequencing technologies, bioinformatics and statistical modeling, and applications in diagnostics and basic research.

Our research contributes to harnessing the enormous technological advances in genome sequencing technology for the generation of biomedical knowledge.

Important goals of our current research are

  1. to develop methods for accurate immuno-genotyping of human genomes, apply them to the largest human genome cohorts (e.g. UK Biobank, with approximately 500,000 subjects enrolled), and use them to gain new insights into, for example, the genetic basis of autoimmune diseases;
  2. to explore the characterization of the relationship between the human microbiome and human health, especially in the field of hematological-oncological diseases;
  3. to develop new methods for faster diagnosis of sepsis, in particular via rapid sequencing of cell-free DNA ("liquid biopsy");
  4. to explore the variability of microbial genomes, especially in the field of mobile genetic elements (MGEs) and genome evolution;
  5. to develop new systems ("Integrated Genomic Surveillance") that combine viral genome sequencing with contact tracing to enable high-resolution investigation of the infection chains of SARS-CoV-2 and other pathogens and
  6. to develop bioinformatics methods, particularly for graph genomes and metagenomic sequencing.

If you are interested in bachelor, master or PhD projects, please contact us; a prerequisite for working in our group is existing knowledge or at least a strong interest plus motivation for self-study in bioinformatics, statistical modeling and/or computational biology.

Population Immunogenomics

Insights into Immune Related Diseases gained from population genomics.


Methods for genotyping the HLA locus in hundreds of thousands of individuals.

Graph Genomes

Scalable and reproducible methods for the construction, evaluation and use of genome graphs (Subproject B).


Cell-free DNA as a diagnostic marker in haematology.


Characterisation of vaginal microbiomes with Nanopore sequencing methods.

SARS-CoV-2 Contact Tracing

Development of a real-time SARS-CoV-2 sequencing platform with genomic contact tracing.


Co-coordination and co-development of the GenSurv infrastructure for genomic surveillance of the “Netzwerk Universitätsmedizin

Development of bioinformatic methods

Development of methods with a special focus on genome inference, genome graphs and k-mer-based algorithms.

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