RUB » Dekanat » Biochemie der Pflanzen » Intro


Chair:  Prof. Dr. Matthias Rögner



Tel.: 0234/32-23634
Fax.: 0234/32-14322

Research at the chair


Illustration of the main research fields at the chair

Bioenergetics (example: Photosynthesis research, ranging from whole cyanobacterial cells over isolated membranes up to the characterization of (membrane) protein complexes on the molecular level, e.g. Photosystem 2, PS2) Biotechnology (example: Biohydrogen production by green algal cells upon illumination; elucidation of its basic principles and their application as renewable energy source)

Research at the chair is focused on basic phenomena of bioenergetics, biochemistry and molecular biology of microalgae (cyanobacteria and green algae) and bacteria, with most projects being directly or indirectly correlated to plant photosynthesis. Major aim is to understand principles how solar energy is converted into chemical energy and how these processes can be made available for practical application, using either modified natural systems or biomimetic (semi-)artificial systems.

Both the various research projects and also the teaching activities of the chair can be roughly divided into two major groups:


  • Structure, function, biogenesis and regulation of components from the photosynthetic and respiratory electron
    transport chain (e.g. PS1, PS2, Cyt. b6f complex, ATPases, alternative oxidases and others)
    (Rögner) (Happe) (Nowaczyk) (Rexroth)

  • Composition, dynamics and compartimentation of energy transducing membrane systems in dependence of
    evolution and stress response (Rögner) (Nowaczyk) (Rexroth)

  • Bioenergetics of hydrogen production in microalgae (Happe)


  • Bio-photolytical hydrogen production in microalgae (cyanobacteria and green algae) and in biomimetic model
    systems (Rögner) (Happe) (Nowaczyk) (Rexroth)

  • Development of photobioreactors for the mass production of microalgae - optimization of biohydrogen and biomass
     yield (Rögner) (Happe) (Rexroth)

  • Membrane proteomics: Development of technologies for the complete and quantitative coverage of the membrane proteome from bacteria  (Nowaczyk) (Troetschel)
see also:    , CyanoFactory  and the DIP German-Israeli Research Cooperation


Teaching focuses on plant biochemistry and plant biotechnology. For procaryotic (cyanobacteria) and eucaryotic organisms (green algae and higher plants) principles of photosynthesis and molecular biotechnology are demonstrated. On the level of whole cells, examples of light-triggered, complex regulatory circuits are given. Also, starting from mass cultures up to 25L, strategies for the isolation of (membrane) proteins up to their crystallisation and structure determination by X-ray and NMR are shown.

Practical courses involve industrial biotechnology, mass spectrometry, mass fermentation technologies and chromatographic separation technologies.