Microbial Ecology, Limnology
and General Microbiology

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Welcome to the Chair of Microbial Ecology, Limnology, and General Microbiology

Research in our laboratory aims at an understanding of microbial activities in nature. We try to elucidate principles and limits of substrate turnover and energy exploitation as well as the ecology of microorganisms performing mainly anaerobic processes. Our studies usually start with samples from lake or marine sedi­ments, wastewater sludge, or wetland soils, from which microorganisms are isolated that catalyse key processes in the environment and often possess unusual metabolic activities. For example, we discovered processes like phosphite oxidation coupled to sulfate reduction, iron oxidation coupled to nitrate reduction, or anaerobic phototrophic nitrite oxidation. We are especially interested in understanding the biochemistry of the underlying processes, their energetics and their implications on substrate turnover kinetics. Our final goal is to purify and characterize the responsible enzymes and to identify their encoding genes. In parallel, we study microorganisms directly in the environment. Here, we follow biogeochemically or biotechnologically relevant processes using methods from analytical chemistry and link these activities to the responsible microorganisms using molecular tools like stable isotope probing, next-generation sequencing of 16S rRNA or functional marker genes, and various systems biology approaches like (meta-)genomics. These structure-function analyses aim to gain detailed knowledge on the ecology and ecophysiology of environmentally relevant microorganisms. Read more...

Contact details

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Bernhard Schink
University of Konstanz
Dept. of Biology
Microbial Ecology
D-78457 Konstanz
Phone: +49-7531-88-2140
E-Mail: Bernhard Schink
Room: M 905

Secretary: Renate Gimmi
Phone: +49-7531-88-4027
Fax: +49-7531-88-4047
E-Mail: Renate Gimmi
Room: M 904




Postal address:
Universitätsstr. 10
D-78464 Konstanz