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Department of Animal Physiology

The Department of Animal Physiology is responsible for the Experimental Biology Master‘s programme and the Physiology and Developmental Biology Doctoral programme. The research covers structural, ecological, biochemical, and molecular aspects of animal physiology, and is focused on several dominant areas.


Homepage: http://kfz.prf.jcu.cz/en/
Head of the Department: Prof. Dalibor Kodrík
E-mail: kodrik@entu.cas.cz

Ph.D. study in Physiology and Developmental Biology 

Programme Directors: Prof. Dalibor Kodrík, Assoc. Prof. Jiří Šantrůček
Contact: Phone: (420)-387775271, e-mail: kodrik@entu.cas.cz
Phone: (420)-387772353, e-mail: jsan@prf.jcu.cz
Co-operating department:  Department of Experimental Plant Biology

Research and education activities

The Department of Animal Physiology is responsible for the Experimental Biology Master‘s programme and the Physiology and Developmental Biology Doctoral programme. The research covers structural, ecological, biochemical, and molecular aspects of animal physiology, and is focused on several dominant areas.

Insect stress hormones

An anti-stress reaction in insects is controlled by adipokinetic neuropetides. This project deals with the detailed molecular, biochemical and physiological characterisation of the hormones to contribute to a better understanding of their function and evolution.

Anti-stress reactions regulating metabolic homeostasis in insects

This project is focused on a functional study of adipokinetic hormone (AKH) and its possible links or parallels with the adenosine signalling pathway in physiological processes affecting homeostasis. The emphasis is laid on understanding of the role of AKH in the stress response at the subcellular level.

Study of diapause

Diapausing insects cease to develop, rely on accumulated energy resources, and suppress their metabolism. The molecular and biochemical correlates of diapause, including the function of biological clock genes and their products, are under study. The practical aspects of insect imaginal diapause are studied on the beetle Ips typhographus model.

Mechanisms of insect cold tolerance and long term cryopreservation

The physiological nature of high cold tolerance in diapausing insects is analysed. Knowledge of these mechanisms can serve as a basis for development of long-term cryopreservation techniques for insects or other biological materials. The study is focussed on membrane composition and function at low temperatures, and on changes of gene expression which result in metabolic switching and synthesis of protective substances such as polyols or heat shock proteins.

Study of insect silk

Insect silk is a natural source of a number of interesting proteins for practical application. Natural or recombinant silk proteins are studied in several lepidopteran and trichopteran models, and their utilization in practice is considered.