From whole habitats to subcellular compartments: Biological interfaces are everywhere and their importance cannot be overstated. Wherever different spheres touch or overlap there is friction that counteracts stagnation. The zones between water and land, for example, are teeming with life. And at the borders of different habitats micro-climate effects have been observed. Even life itself might originate from an interface between liquid and gaseous phases, as has been recently proposed. And the cell as basic unit of life? A multitude of subcellular compartments keep cellular processes separate and yet are tightly connected. Membranes help but are not always needed: We now know of membraneless organelles as transient products of phase separation in the cytosol or nucleus of the cell. At the interface between different cells a multitude of physical and biochemical signals are integrated to mediate collective and emergent behaviours that lie at the core of cellular and tissue self-organization. This conference will highlight current work on cellular interfaces in biology and neighbouring disciplines like medicine, chemistry, physics, computational sciences and mathematics. Several sessions will be hosted by prominent national research consortia that focus on the topic of the conference. The DGZ conference is a hub for cell biological research in Germany and we are looking forward to a stimulating meeting on today’s most exciting and multifaceted scientific topics.

Roland Wedlich-Söldner

Schlossplatz 2 48149 Münster