General information about the research conducted in the workgroup Steinbüchel



The research of the laboratory aims at revealing the physiological, biochemical and molecular basis of metabolic pathways and its regulation in bacteria. Of particular interest are biosynthesis pathways of chemical substances, which are relevant for the industry, and the biodegradation and biotransformation of renewable resources, which are provided by agriculture or are from the industry as waste and residual materials. In the ideal case both aspects are combined. There is a strong interest to tightly link basic research and applied studies  to establish new or to improve already existing biotechnological processes, to obtain novel biotechnological products and to provide them in sufficient amounts for characterization.The synthesis of biopolymers (e. g. polyesters, polyamides, sulfur containing polymers), natural flavours (e. g. vanillin) and other chemicals (e. g. lipids, wax esters, 2-methylcitrate) as well as the biodegradation of polymers und their utilization (e. g. natural and synthetic rubbers, polyethylene glycol, polyamides and lignite) and of low molecular weight chemicals (e. g. squalane, iminodisuccinate, acetoin) are investigated.

Applied methods and strategies:




  • Screening and utilization of the diversity of microorganisms



    Purification and characterization of enzymes and other proteins


  • Cloning and characterization of genes

  • Modification of proteins and genes

  • Evaluation and utilization of genome sequence data

  • Metabolic engineering

  • In vitro biosynthesis

  • Fermentation in bioreactors up to 500-L scale

  • Isolation, Identification and characterization of metabolites