University of Vienna

The University of Vienna (UNIVIE), founded in 1365, is one of the oldest and largest universities in Europe. It consists of 19 faculties and centres and is the largest research and education institution of Austria. The unit of Archaea Biology and Ecogenomics at UNIVIE in the Faculty of Life Sciences currently comprises four groups [the Archaea Ecology and Evolution Group; the Environmental Cell Biology Group; the Archaea Physiology &Biotechnology Group; and the Genome Evolution and Ecology Group].

The research interests of the Archaea Ecology and Evolution Group, led by Prof. Dr. Christa Schleper, which will be one of the two internationally leading research groups of ACTIONr, include the natural diversity, distribution and ecophysiology of archaea, with a focus on ammonia oxidizing archaea and Asgardarchaeota.

The group has long experience in the cultivation and isolation of novel AOA strains, their genomic and physiological characterization as well as biochemical characterization of key enzymes. Moreover, they are pioneering the systems biology studies of AOA, including proteomics, transcriptomics and metabolomics, and integrating them in an evolutionary context. Additionally, the group has developed novel methods to study nitrogen cycling communities in environmental samples with the goal to unravel the ecological role of distinct AOM and their responses within a changing climate.

 The Archaea Ecology and Evolution group will provide expertise in the ecophysiology and ecogenomics of N cycling microorganisms. Prof. Dr C. Schleper and Dr Melina Kerou will participate in Project Coordination Committee and the Supervisory Board.

Principal investigators

Christa Schleper

Christa Schleper is a Professor of Genetics and Microbiology, Head of the Department of Functional and Evolutionary Ecology and leader of the Archaea Ecology and Evolution Group at the University of Vienna, Austria. Her work focuses on the evolution and ecology of Archaea an

Melina Kerou

Melina Kerou is a Senior Scientist in the Archaea Ecology and Evolution Group at the University of Vienna, Austria. Her work focuses on the (comparative) genomic, physiological, and evolutionary analyses of ammonia oxidising archaea, in the context of their diverse ecophysio

Research Team

Logan Hodgskiss

Postdoctoral Fellow