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E. coli bacteria found in intestine of warm-blooded organism - 3D render
immimagery -

Comparative Microbiome Analysis

We are living in a microbial world … It is our aim to use the enormous functional power of microbiomes to improve planetary health.

We are living in a microbial world … It is our aim to use the enormous functional power of microbiomes to improve planetary health.

About our Research

The human microbiome is a key component for our health. It is strongly influenced by environmental microbiota, which interact with the microbiome of barrier organs like skin or respiratory system. As a consequence, the reduced microbial diversity in the environment, resulting from climate- and global change, strongly impacts human – environment interactions, resulting in an increase in environmental diseases and infections. According to the planetary health concept the prevention of such diseases requires strategies which increase biodiversity in the environment.

We identify key microbiota from the environment, which trigger our health, develop strategies to promote the abundance of those microbiota in urban and indoor environments and analyze consequences for our health.

Our Research Groups

3D Rendering of Bacteria in Human Intestine
Alpha Tauri 3D -

Human Microbiomes

We investigate the interactions of environmental- and human microbiomes of barrier organs including respiratory system and skin and define keystone species which determine human health

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Escherichia coli
Siarhei -

Environmental Microbiomes

We study how climate- and global change impacts the environmental microbiome and develop mitigation strategies to increase microbial diversity for the prevention of human health.

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Scientists at COMI

Institute: Scientists at COMI

Dr. Aaron Fox


Catherine Kamau

PhD student

Nora Köller

PhD student

Swanandee Nulkar

PhD student

Juliette Ohan

PhD student

Lisa Marie Streb

PhD student

Michaela Blank

Laboratory Assistant -- Funded by the BMBF (; project: µPlastic)

Cornelia Galonska

Laboratory Assistant -- Partly funded by the JPI water (; project: CONTACT

Gudrun Hufnagel

Laboratory Assistant -- Partly funded by the German Center for Lung Research (


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2024 Scientific Article in Nature Communications

Camenzind, T. ; Aguilar-Trigueros, C.A. ; Hempel, S. ; Lehmann, A. ; Bielcik, M. ; Andrade Linares, D.R. ; Bergmann, J. ; Dela Cruz, J. ; Gawronski, J. ; Golubeva, P. ; Haslwimmer, H. ; Lartey, L. ; Leifheit, E. ; Maas, S. ; Marhan, S. ; Pinek, L. ; Powell, J.R. ; Roy, J. ; Veresoglou, S.D. ; Wang, D. ; Wulf, A. ; Zheng, W. ; Rillig, M.C.

Towards establishing a fungal economics spectrum in soil saprobic fungi.

2024 Review in Biology and Fertility of Soils

Vogel, H.J. ; Amelung, W. ; Baum, C. ; Bonkowski, M. ; Blagodatsky, S. ; Grosch, R. ; Herbst, M. ; Kiese, R. ; Koch, S. ; Kuhwald, M. ; König, S. ; Leinweber, P. ; Lennartz, B. ; Müller, C.W. ; Pagel, H. ; Rillig, M.C. ; Rüschhoff, J. ; Russell, D. ; Schnepf, A. ; Schulz, S. ; Siebers, N. ; Vetterlein, D. ; Wachendorf, C. ; Weller, U. ; Wollschläger, U.

How to adequately represent biological processes in modeling multifunctionality of arable soils.

2024 Scientific Article in Nature Communications

Neyret, M. ; Le Provost, G. ; Boesing, A.L. ; Schneider, F.D. ; Baulechner, D. ; Bergmann, J. ; de Vries, F.T. ; Fiore-Donno, A.M. ; Geisen, S. ; Goldmann, K. ; Merges, A. ; Saifutdinov, R.A. ; Simons, N.K. ; Tobias, J.A. ; Zaitsev, A.S. ; Gossner, M.M. ; Jung, K. ; Kandeler, E. ; Krauss, J. ; Penone, C. ; Schloter, M. ; Schulz, S. ; Staab, M. ; Wolters, V. ; Apostolakis, A. ; Birkhofer, K. ; Boch, S. ; Boeddinghaus, R.S. ; Bolliger, R. ; Bonkowski, M. ; Buscot, F. ; Dumack, K. ; Fischer, M. ; Gan, H.Y. ; Heinze, J. ; Hölzel, N. ; John, K. ; Klaus, V.H. ; Kleinebecker, T. ; Marhan, S. ; Müller, J. ; Renner, S.C. ; Rillig, M.C. ; Schenk, N.V. ; Schöning, I. ; Schrumpf, M. ; Seibold, S. ; Socher, S.A. ; Solly, E.F. ; Teuscher, M. ; van Kleunen, M. ; Wubet, T. ; Manning, P.

A slow-fast trait continuum at the whole community level in relation to land-use intensification.

2024 Scientific Article in FEMS Microbiology Ecology

Behr, J.H. ; Kuhl-Nagel, T. ; Sommermann, L. ; Moradtalab, N. ; Chowdhury, S.P. ; Schloter, M. ; Windisch, S. ; Schellenberg, I. ; Maccario, L. ; Sörensen, S.J. ; Rothballer, M. ; Geistlinger, J. ; Smalla, K. ; Ludewig, U. ; Neumann, G. ; Grosch, R. ; Babin, D.

Long-term conservation tillage with reduced nitrogen fertilization intensity can improve winter wheat health via positive plant-microorganism feedback in the rhizosphere.


Barbara Stempfhuber

Dr. Barbara Stempfhuber

Scientific Assistant

43a / 115

Martina Kuhnert


43a / 115