Department Environmental Microbiology

Main focus

Our core interests are:

  • Basic principles of the evolutionary ecology of microorganisms in their natural environment.
  • The assembly, dynamics, and functionality of microbial communities.
  • Microbial degradation and transformation of chemicals, and in particular anthropogenic pollutants.
  • The occurrence, activities and ecology of microbes in drinking water resources.

Our research groups combine expertise in environmental biochemistry, physiology, single-cell microbiology, molecular genetics, evolutionary ecology and environmental engineering.

Research Groups

Drinking Water Microbiology
We focus on the basic understanding of microbial ecology and microbiological processes from source to tap in order to address practical everyday questions with respect to the treatment and distribution of high quality drinking water.

Microbial Systems Ecology
The focus of our research group is on basic questions on bacterial ecology and evolution.

Microbial Community Assembly
Our research focuses on deriving and testing general ecological principles that address the causes and consequences of microbial diversity.

Pathogens and Human Health
Our research agenda is to reduce global infectious disease burden through the study of pathogen transmission at the boundary between humans and the environment.

Microbial Specialized Metabolism
Our research focuses on microbial enzymes and pathways involved in the biosynthesis of specialized metabolites and biodegradation of pollutants.