Current Research

Photograph of Stylophora pistillata. Photography by Till Röthig, KAUST.
We are currently completing sequencing, assembly, and annotation of the coral hologenome of Stylophora pistillata, a cosmopolitan and common coral species that serves as a physiological model system in numerous studies.​​​​​​​​
In order to accelerate scientific discovery and together with collaborators from the USA and Germany, we are generating the ecological, methodological, and genomic resources for the sea anemone Aiptasia as a model system for cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbioses. ​​
The aim of this research project is to understand resilience and adaptability of corals in regard to anticipated global and local environmental alterations as well as beneficial coral metaorganism assemblages.
Marine organisms are considered a rich source of new bioactive molecules. While numerous promising candidates have been isolated from marine organisms, large areas of the world's oceans remain unexplored. In particular, the Red Sea is a largely untapped, uncharted source of bioactives. In this research area, we are screening the Red Sea environment for promising bioactive molecules.​​​
To help scientists safely explore the Red Sea's fragile and previously inaccessible underwater environment, we are designing and building a semi-autonomous underwater robotic explorer.​​