Some dissertations are nerve wrecking events where you find yourself stuck between compassion for the poor defendant and relief that you are not the one up there. This was not one of these events. Rather, the audience enjoyed a brilliant introduction to the field of homologous recombination repair by opponent Steve K, a beautiful summary of the thesis work by Arvid, and finally, a cordial scientific discussion of the different topics of the thesis. Well done Dr. Arvid!
Figure: (Upper left) Good ol’ Whiskey for a Good ol’ Doctor! (Upper right) Bring on the Champagne! (Lower left) Dog. (Bottom right) The Head of Department hands over the thesis.
In his thesis, Arvid uses microscopic as well as microfluidic techniques to show that DNA repair by homologous recombination occurs even between homologies separated by several micrometers. The process finishes well within the time of a cell generation, with the enigmatic search phase being as quick as eight or possibly even three minutes. Since this time is much faster than expected, he also presents a physical model demonstrating how homology search on this time scale is indeed plausible. The work in its entirety can be found here: