Contact

Dr. Johannes Raff
Biogeochemistry
j.raffAthzdr.de
Phone: +49 351 260 - 2951
Fax: +49 351 260 - 12951

Dr. Gerhard Geipel
Head
g.geipelAthzdr.de
Phone: +49 351 260 - 2306, 2529, 2508
Fax: +49 351 260 - 3553

Biogeochemistry Division


Research

In the environment physical, chemical and biological processes influence the migration behavior of long-lived radionuclides. In the biosphere mainly prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms are involved in element cycles and the mobilization or immobilization of many radioactive and non-radioactive elements. Furthermore, their physiology and biochemistry are optimized to allow them to live and survive in almost all environments existing on earth even over long periods of time. Besides that, the interaction of microbes with radionuclides and with higher organisms determine the fate of the radionuclides in nature and in the end their potential threat to human health. The aim of the research in the Biogeochemistry division is thus to identify dominating processes in the ecosphere including the food chain, to understand the biochemistry of the processes on a molecular level and to estimate their relevance for the radionuclides migration not only in nature but also in an engineered subsurface e.g. a deep-geological repository for radioactive waste. Beside the fundamental research it is also intended to generate thermodynamic data to improve the safety assessment modelling.


Current research topics

  • Determination of the microbial diversity in water and soil environments contaminated with heavy metals and radionuclides as well as in different host rocks for radioactive waste disposals:
    • culture-independent approaches:
      Extraction of DNA, PCR, Sanger sequencing, Next Generation Sequencing
    • culture-dependent approaches:
      Enrichment, Isolation, characterization and cultivation of microbial isolates recovered from above environments, e.g. bacteria, archaea und fungi
  • Microbe-radionuclide-interactions with reference strains and isolates:
    • Biosorption, bioaccumulation and biotransformation of radionuclides by bacteria, archaea, algae and fungi
    • Tolerance of microbes to different radionuclides
    • Analysis of the genetic determinants responsible for the microbe-radionuclide interactions
    • Investigation of bacterial S-layer proteins isolated from bacteria living in uranium mining waste piles: metal-structure relationship and metal clustering
    • Studies on microbe-uranium interaction in flooding waters of former uranium mines for bioremediation and upscaling of the processes for the construction of a pilot plant.
  • Interaction of eukaryotic cells with radionuclides and lanthanides in particular with plants, fungi, sponges and algae
  • Investigation of the interaction of selected bioligands and model compounds with f-elements:
    • Complex formation of actinides with flavonoides and badiones
    • Investigation of the interaction of f-elements with calmodulin and phosvitin
  • Characterization of microbial processes affecting the conditions in deep geological repository for radioactive waste (e.g. transformation of bentonite as barrier material)
  • Calculation and determination of the metal speciation relevant to the environment
  • Verification and validation of transport models
  • Characterization of particles in the environment relevant to the transport of radionuclides
  • Investigation of the transport processes of radionuclides by particles (including microbes) in natural water

Experimental methods

  • Spectroscopy: LIFS (TRLFS, LIPAS); continuous wave fluorescence spectroscopy, UV-vis-NIR, XAS, Raman
  • Molecular biology (DNA extraction, PCR, Sanger sequencing, Next Generation Sequencing, heterologous expression of proteins)
  • Aerobic and anaerobic lab-scale cultivation of microorganisms in bioreactors (1-50 L)
  • Cell disruption in small and large volumes (mixer mill, ultra-sonic disruption, bead ruptor, high pressure homogenizer)
  • Microscopy: CLSM, REM, TEM, AFM
  • Chromatography: HPLC, FPLC
  • Protein biochemistry (isolation and characterization)

Projects

  • MIND, EU project, grant agreement No 661880, duration 01.06.2015 – 31.05.2019
  • BioVeStRa, BMBF support code 02S9276A, duration 01.06.2016-31.05.2019
  • CONCERT: European Joint Programme for the Integration of Radiation Protection Research; EC-Project grant agreement No 662287, duration 2015 -2020
  • TransAqua, BMBF support code 02NUK030F, duration 01.06.2013-30.11.2017
  • UMB project, BMWI support code 02E11344B, duration 01.04.2015-31.12.2017
  • BioNEWS, BMBF support code 03WKCL03F, duration 01.01.2015-31.12.2017
  • TRANS-LARA, BMBF support code 02NUK051B, duration 01.09.2017-31.08.2020

Staff

For more information, move the cursor over the images or click the persons image!

FWOB Katja Schulz Dr. Anne Heller Dr. Evelyn Krawczyk-Bärsch Dr. Susanne Sachs Björn Drobot Sylvia Heller Katrin Flemming Dr. Henry Moll Dr. Johannes Raff Dr. Alix Günther Dr. Gerhard Geipel Monika Dudek Dr. Manja Vogel Dr. Thuro Arnold

Head

NameBld./Office+49 351 260Email
Geipel Dr., Gerhard801/P2482306
2529
2508
g.geipelAthzdr.de
Raff Dr., Johannes801/P3082951
j.raffAthzdr.de

Employees

NameBld./Office+49 351 260Email
Bachran, Madlen801/P3062860
m.bachranAthzdr.de
Bader, Miriam801/P3062860
m.baderAthzdr.de
Brinkmann, Hannes801/P2543487
h.brinkmannAthzdr.de
Cherkouk Dr., Andrea801/P3562989
a.cherkoukAthzdr.de
Drozdowski, Jennifer801/P3033375
j.drozdowskiAthzdr.de
Flemming, Katrin801/P3092958
k.flemmingAthzdr.de
Günther Dr., Alix801/P2562433
2522
a.guentherAthzdr.de
Heller, Sylvia801/P2132123
2513
2510
s.hellerAthzdr.de
Hilpmann, Stephans.hilpmannAthzdr.de
Jessat, Jennyj.jessatAthzdr.de
Kluge, Sindy801/P2193194
s.klugeAthzdr.de
Krawczyk-Bärsch Dr., Evelyn801/P2522076
e.krawczyk-baerschAthzdr.de
Lemke, Frederikf.lemkeAthzdr.de
Matschiavelli Dr., Nicole801/P3033375
n.matschiavelliAthzdr.de
Moll Dr., Henry801/P2562433
2549
h.mollAthzdr.de
Sachs Dr., Susanne801/P2082436
s.sachsAthzdr.de
Schäfer, Sebastians.schaeferAthzdr.de
Seibt, Jana801/P2193194
2510
j.seibtAthzdr.de
Wollenberg, Anne801/P3062860
2522
a.wollenbergAthzdr.de


Contact

Dr. Johannes Raff
Biogeochemistry
j.raffAthzdr.de
Phone: +49 351 260 - 2951
Fax: +49 351 260 - 12951

Dr. Gerhard Geipel
Head
g.geipelAthzdr.de
Phone: +49 351 260 - 2306, 2529, 2508
Fax: +49 351 260 - 3553