(close up examination of a larva of a slipper lobster)
I am investigating the evolution of development in deep time. I am mainly working with groups of Euarthropoda, i.e., crustaceans, insects, myriapods, spiders and alike, as well as extinct relatives. Yet, I have also worked on other groups, e.g., early non-sclerotised arthropods or cycloneuralian worms.
My approach is based on comparisons of ontogenetic sequences of modern species with those of their extinct relatives, the latter based on exceptionally preserved fossils. I am especially interested in evolutionary shifts in developmental timing, also called heterochrony, and the evolution of novelties in early post-embryonic stages, i.e., the evolution of larvae. Recently I am focussing on the question how the combination of these two aspects can lead to the phenomenon that we call metamorphosis.
For a better access to details of modern and fossil forms I am also interested in optimising imaging methods in 2D and 3D. For reconstructing the morphology and functional aspects of extinct organisms I am additionally using computer-based 3D modeling.
For more information on Joachim's research please click here: https://www.palaeo-evo-devo.info/