Christoph Schmidt’s group in the Department of Physics at Duke University works at the interface between soft condensed matter physics and biophysics. We use approaches and tools from statistical physics, polymer physics, and condensed matter physics to study the mechanics and dynamics of living systems on many scales, from single molecules, via biomacromolecular assemblies such as cytoskeletal filaments, to bacteria and eukaryotic cells and tissues. A strong recent interest lies in the non-equilibrium statistical physics of “active matter” and on mechanosensory machinery, all the way from bacteria to whole Drosophila larvae. Experimental approaches include advanced light and fluorescence microscopy, optical trapping, atomic force microscopy, micro-, and macrorheology. We collaborate extensively with groups in theoretical physics as well as in biology, engineering, and medical school.