Ecothermodynamics / Biocalorimetry

Research Group Ecothermodynamics / Biocalorimetry
Kristina Vogel, Claudia Heber, Thore Rohwerder, Sven Paufler, Monique Reichard, Anika Krämer, Thomas Maskow (from left to right; Friderike Buchholz and Kurt-Tobias Mühler are missing, Madlen Schubert made the pictures)

Research Topics

Thermodynamics as a method to describe conditions and processes of complex systems offers an excellent supplement to kinetic and stoichiometric approaches, experience and intuition by well-founded scientific rules. Unfortunately, thermodynamics in ecosystems as well as in biotechnology is despite of its potential rather seldom applied.

Therefore, our group applys, develops and validates thermodynamic rules with the aims:

  • to deepen insights into complex networks of both ecosystems (Microbial Ecology) and metabolisms (Biothermodynamics),
  • to predict and to control the functional biodiversity (Ecological Microbiology),
  • to develop ultra-sensitive real time sensors for ecosystems and biotechnology (Biocalorimetry and Impedance spectroscopy), and
  • to analyse and to control complex bioprocesses in larger scale (Bioprocess control).
  • to understand interactions of nanomaterial with biological material

Senior Scientist                   PhD             and BA Students

Dr. Thore Rohwerder                      Kristina Vogel            Anika Krämer

Dr. Friderike Buchholz                    Hieu Linh Duong 


Sven Paufler (Deputy)

Claudia Heber (Laboratory manager)

Kurt-Tobias Mühler (Apprentice)

Monique Reichard (Apprentice)


- Fermentation / reaction calorimetry            - Microcalorimetry
- Chip calorimetry                                         - ITC & DSC
- Combustion calorimetry                              - Respirometry
- Impedance Spectroscopy                           - Fermentations
- Thermokinetic modelling

Selected Cooperations / Projects

Glycolysis: Thermodynamics and predictions of metabolic pathways

German Research Foundation (DFG): Cooperation project with two universities (Rostock + Dortmund)

Development of calorimetry as real time instrument to analyze and control complex environmental bioprocesses (DOCUMENT)

German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD): Project Based Personnel Exchange Programme (PPP) with the Chinese University of Geosciences Wuhan, China

Production of chiral R-3-hydroxyalkanoates from methylotrophic bacteria using renewable raw materials

German Federation of Industrial Research Associations "Otto von Guericke" (AiF): Co-operation project with Umwelt- und Ingenieurtechnik GmbH Dresden (UIT)

Analysis and Control of Bioprocesses in natural and technical systems using chip-calorimetry

German Federation of Industrial Research Associations "Otto von Guericke" (AiF): Co-operation project with TU Freiberg, RWTH Aachen and 7 medium sized biotech companies)

Biothermodynamic characterization and analysis of biofilms using new miniaturized chip-calorimeters

German Research Foundation (DFG): Co-operation project with TU Freiberg

10 selected publications from the last three years

Zhou Z-Q, Yang L-Y, Yan R., Zhao J, Liu Y-Q, Lai L, Jiang F-L, Maskow T, Liu Y (2017) Mn-doped ZnSe quantum dots initiated mild and rapid cation exchange for tailoring composition and optical properties of colloid nanocrystals: novel template, new applications. Nanoscale (accepted, IF=7.760)

Korth B, Maskow T, Picioreanu C, Harnisch F (2016) The microbial electrochemical Peltier heat: an energetic burden and engineering chance for primary microbial electrochemical technologies. Energy & Environmental Science 9:2539-2544 (IF = 25.4)

Rohde M-T, Paufler S, Harms H, Maskow T (2016) Calorespirometric Feeding Control Enhances Bioproduction from Toxic Feedstocks – Demonstration for Biopolymer Production out of Methanol. Biotechnology and Bioengineering 113(10): 2113-2121

Maskow T, Paufler S (2015) What does calorimetry and thermodynamics of living cells tell us? Methods 76: 3-10

Przybylski D, Rohwerder T, Dilßner C, Maskow T, Harms H, Müller RH (2014) Exploiting mixtures of H2, CO2 and O2 for improved production of methacrylate precursor 2-hydroxyisobutyric acid by engineered Cupriavidus necator strains. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 99:2131-2145

Hoffmann P, Held C, Maskow T, Sadowski G (2014) A Thermodynamic Investigation of the Glucose-6-phosphate Isomerization. Biophysical Chemistry 195: 22-31

Maskow T, Mariana Morais F, Rosa LFM, Qian YG, Harnisch F (2014). Insufficient Oxygen Diffusion Leads to Distortions of Microbial Growth Parameters Assessed by Isothermal Microcalorimetry, RSC Advances 4: 32730-32737

Mariana Morais F, Buchholz F, Hartmann T, Lerchner J, Neu TR, Kiesel B, Harms H, Maskow T (2014). Chip-calorimetric Monitoring of Biofilm Eradication with Bacteriophages Reveals an Unexpected Infection Related Heat Profile. Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry, 115: 2203-2210

To see further publications, please visit our personal web pages.