Microbiology of Interfaces


Head of Group:
Dr. Thomas R. Neu

Tel: +49 391 8109 800
Fax: +49 391 8109 150

Brueckstrasse 3Aa
39114 Magdeburg

In nature microorganisms are often associated with animate and inanimate interfaces. These so-called bio-aggregates or bio-films demonstrate the “microbiological way of life”. The various bacteria, archaea and eucaryotic micro-organisms at interfaces play a key role in the cycling of elements and organic compounds as wells as in sorption, degradation and transport of contaminants. In addition, many biotechnological processes e.g. wastewater treatment, rely on immobilized microbial communities. Vice versa, biofouling in technical systems may negatively affect process performance and product quality. Finally, microbial biofilms may represent a source of pathogens and can cause infections associated with different human tracts as well as invasive devices and implants. As a consequence the research focus of the group comprises structure, function and processes in environmental, industrial and medical biofilms.