Department of Ecogenetics and Systems Biology - Division of Archaea Biology and Ecogenomics

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We belong to the Faculty of Life Sciences of the University of Vienna and are part of the Vienna Ecology Centre. Our department has a "dependance" at the Center of Geobiology at University of Bergen, Norway.
Since April 1, 2013 we are the Archaea Biology and Ecogenomics Division of the Department of Ecogenomics and Systems Biology.


Beside Bacteria, a second evolutionary lineage of microorganisms arose about 3.5 billion years ago on this planet: the Archaea. They thrive in extreme environments reminiscient of conditions on the early Earth, but are also of global ecological importance in moderate common place environments.
It is the main goal of this Department to shed light on fundamental distinctions between archaea and bacteria, to understand their different roles in both ecological and evolutionary processes. We study specifically:
- molecular adaptations and virus defense of hyperthermophilic model organisms
- genome content, expression patterns, physiology and ecology of moderate ammonia oxidizing archaea as well as
- symbioses of microorganisms with viruses and eukaryotes.
We thus attempt to improve the understanding of the role of microorganisms, in particular of archaea, in global biogeochemical cycles and in early evolution.


Guest lecture Dr. Sophie Abby

Sophie Abby, Microbial Evolutionary Genomics group, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France, will give a guest lecture:

"Evolution playing a molecular building set: how secretion systems were exempted from bacterial appendages"

Fr, June 20, 2014; 11:00a.m. (sharp); MoSys seminar room 1.320, UZA 1

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Science Day 2014 and afterwards Summer Party
PhD and MSc students of the departments present their research

, July 1, 09:00a.m.-07:00p.m., Lecture Hall I, UZA 1
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Guest Lectures:
Victor Smetacek, Alfred Wegener Institute, Bremerhaven
Gaspar Jekely, Max-Planck-Institute for Developmental Biology, Tübingen


Master thesis defense Andrea Söllinger
Andrea Söllinger will defend her Master thesis "Investigations on the Environmental Distribution & Metabolism of methanogenic Thermoplasmata"
Th, June 26, 11:00a.m., MoSys seminar room 1.320
Good luck!


Post Doc Michaela Stieglmeier

uni:view Magazin June 2014 Forschungsnewsletter

The uni:view Magazin reports on Christa Schleper and her team's recent research "Die dritte Domäne des Lebens" (german only). The related article Stieglmeier et al (2014) was published in the ISME Journal (doi: 10.1038/ismej.2013.220) earlier this year.

Die Mikrobiologin Christa Schleper beschäfigt sich seit vielen Jahren mit den umweltrelevanten Archaea. In einer aktuellen Publikation zeigen die Forscherin und ihr Team, dass einige dieser Kleinstlebewesen Treibhausgase emittieren...
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2 Master theses in archaea biology available
We are seeking two candidates for the cultivation and physiological/genomic characterization of novel archaea from hot springs
and soil.
I want to know more!


Guest Lecture Dr. Susanne Erdmann
Susanne Erdmann, Danish Archaea Centre (DAC), Department of Biology, University of Kopenhagen, will give a guest lecture:

"Inter-viral conflicts that exploit host CRISPR immune systems of Sulfolobus"

We, April 23, 2014; 10 a.m. (sharp); Seminar room 1.115.


Let's talk about symbiosis
A joint seminar about symbiosis research in 3 departments of the University of Vienna with talks of Isabelle Zink and Nika Pende from our division!

Fr, April 11, 09:00a.m.-06:00p.m., seminar room (1.320) @ MoSys
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Dr. rer. nat. Michaela Stieglmeier
Michaela Stieglmeier successfully defended her PhD thesis “Physiological and morphological characterization of
Nitrososphaera viennensis, an ammonia-oxidizing archaeon from soil“

Fr, April 4, 2014; 10a.m. (sharp); Lecture Hall 4, UZA 2

Supervisor: Christa Schleper
Opponents: Jim Prosser, Gerhard Herndl and Felicitas Pfeifer
Head of the comittee: Irene Lichtscheidl

Congratulations, Michaela!


Guest lecture Prof. Felicitas Pfeifer
Felicitas Pfeifer, TU Darmstadt, will give a guest lecture:

"Life in high salt environments: Haloarchaea and the formation of gas vesicles"

Tu, April 3, 2014; 1:30p.m. (sharp); Lecture Hall 4, UZA 2
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NEW PAPER from our lab in Nucleic Acids Research
Ziga Zebec, Andrea Manica, Jing Zhang, Malcolm White and Christa Schleper have published "CRISPR-mediated targeted mRNA degradation in the archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus" in Nucleic Acids Research in which they demonstrate for the first time mRNA degradation by an RNA interference process in a prokaryote.


Michaela Stieglmeier, Maria Mooshammer, Barbara Kitzler, Wolfgang Wanek, Sophie Zechmeister-Boltenstern, Andreas Richter and Christa Schleper have published "Aerobic nitrous oxide production through N-nitrosating hybrid formation in ammonia-oxidizing archaea" in which they demonstrate in close collaboration with two other groups in Vienna the differences of greenhouse gas production by ammonia oxidizing archaea versus bacteria.


Faculty research news March 2014 Fakultät für Lebenswissenschaften

The faculty research news reports on Silvia Bulgheresi and her team's research "Eine Beziehung fürs Leben" (german only)

Silvia Bulgheresi erforscht eine einmalige Symbiose. Die Beteiligten: Ein maritimer Fadenwurm und sein Bakterium...
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