Microbial Physiology and Molecular Biology

Dr. Susanne Sievers

Functional microbial genome research is one of the most important areas of life science in the world. It is already influencing different fields of business and society, from human health to climate change issues to the various facets of biotechnology, including synthetic biology. Groundbreaking developments in the area of ​​OMICS technologies not only offer an unique insight into physiology, molecular adaptation strategies and pathogenicity mechanisms of individual microorganisms, but also into the structure, functionality and interactions of complex living biocoenosis. The integration of the different (Meta) -OMICS-disciplines leads to a completely new understanding of microbial life. The Riedel group focuses on state-of-the-art proteome analyses, an inherent part of modern microbiology and an important basis for hypothesis-driven experimental research.

The research group “Stress Physiology” (U. Gerth) investigates the proteome of growing and starving or non-growing model organisms (for example, Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus) in order to elucidate the regulation of metabolic pathways or stress and hunger reactions. The research group "Physiological Proteomics & Bioinformatics" (K. Riedel) with the junior group of S. Sievers uses in vitro and in situ proteome analyses to determine the molecular basis of infections of opportunistic pathogens such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa, S. aureus or Clostridium difficile. Metaproteomics analyses are also used to link structure and function of microbial communities in terrestrial (e.g., soil, lichens), aquatic (e.g., freshwater, marine particles), but also human (e.g., pathogenic biofilms, microbiom) habitats. In addition, the research group Riedel (especially J. Bernhardt) develops innovative tools for the analysis, integration and visualization of comprehensive "omics" data sets.