Philipsborn Group

Philipsborn group - Behavioral genetics and circuit neuroscience

The Philipsborn  group focuses their research on how the nervous system generates and controls behaviour, using the fruitfly Drosophila as a model organism. Future work will include using Drosophila as a model system for understanding molecular and cellular aspects of neurodegenerative diseases. 

Research focus

The main research focus has been on male courtship behaviour. During courtship, male flies send an acoustic signal, the courtship song, by extending and vibrating one wing toward the female. We have identified sex-specific neurons which control and shape this behavior (von Philipsborn, A.C., Liu, T., Yu, J.Y., Masser, C., Bidaye, S.S., and Dickson, B.J. (2011). Neuronal control of Drosophila courtship song. Neuron 69, 509-522). Future work on this model behaviour and its underlying neuronal circuit will address general mechanisms for motor pattern generation, the development of sexual dimorphisms as well as sensorimotor integration and decision making.

Furthermore, we are interested in engaging in new collaborations at Aarhus University and in employing Drosophila as a model system for understanding molecular and cellular aspects of neurodegenerative disease.

Available projects

The Philipsborn group has projects available for Master, Bachelor and Erasmus students. Please contact Group Leader Anne von Philipsborn directly, if interested.
See possible projects here

A Drosophila male sings to a female by extending and vibrating one wing (Photo: Solvin Zankl). The Drosophila central nervous system with three neuronal classes (blue, red, green), which control courtship behavior and song generation.


Photo: PhD student Milena Laban (left)

2017.05.02 | Events

DANDRITE attended this year's Festival of Research in Aarhus on April 27

As usual DANDRITE attended the Festival of Research. It was a busy and enjoyable day where group leaders and students from DANDRITE demonstrated their research areas to the general Danish public. Four labs where represented: Anne von Philipsborn lab, Poul Henning Jensen lab, Mark Denham lab and Poul Nissen Lab.

(Copyright: Colourbox)
Sadegh Nabavi (Photo: private)
Mark Denham (Photo: private)
Anne von Philipsborn (Photo: DANDRITE)
Duda Kvitsiani (Photo: DANDRITE)
Keisuke Yonehara (Photo: DANDRITE)

2015.05.29 | People

Top team of Group leaders now complete at DANDRITE

DANDRITE’s aim of appointing five top researchers as Group leaders has just become a reality with the appointment of Dr Sadegh Nabavi, whose research includes how memory is formed, how it can be erased, and how it can subsequently be restored.

2013.11.12 | People


DANDRITE has appointed Anne von Philipsborn and Mark Denham as Group Leaders. These appointments are the first two in a series of five group leaders to be employed at DANDRITE. Anne and Mark will start their research in December and January, respectively.