FML - Institute Profile

The Friedrich Miescher Laboratory (FML) was founded in 1969 to offer highly qualified junior scientists in the area of biology an opportunity to establish independent research groups and pursue their own line of research within a five-year period. The laboratory still serves this purpose today. It is home to four Independent Junior Research Groups of the Max Planck Society. The groups share equipment and jointly manage the organization of the laboratory. These special conditions and the close interaction between the groups make for a very active and lively research atmosphere. The FML is represented by a Managing Director, currently Andrei Lupas, who also supervises the administration of the laboratory.

There is no specification as to which kind of biological research should be conducted at the FML, and the focus of research changes with the appointment of each new group leader. In the past, research interests have included developmental biology, neurobiology, cell biology and many other areas of modern biology.

The Friedrich Miescher Laboratory is located on the Max Planck Campus in Tübingen, next door to the Max Planck Institutes for Biology Tübingen and Biological Cybernetics, allowing close scientific interaction. Scientific exchange between the institutes is furthermore aided by the joint organization of a seminar series with speakers from all over the world, as well as common internal seminars, and the common use of the Max Planck House, with the library, a cafeteria, and the guest house.

FML Groups

Molecular basis and evolution of complex traits

The genome is constantly evolving and adapting. We seek to understand how adaptation is encoded in the genome and how evolution works by combining genomics, stem cell and computational methods to link DNA sequence to their evolutionary outcomes. 


Molecular mechanisms of adaptation and speciation

We use population and functional genomic techniques to study adaptive genetic variation, regulation of gene expression, chromatin, and recombination in stickleback fish.


Dr. Luisa F. Pallares

Evolutionary Genomics of Complex Traits

We study the genetic basis of complex traits in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and how the genotype–phenotype map gets re-modelled under different environmental conditions.


Structural Biochemistry of Meiosis

Meiosis is the process by which the chromosomes from each parent are properly segregated into gametes (e.g. eggs and sperm). Our group examines the mechanisms that control this critical process in the development of new life.