Welcome to the
Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology
The aim of our research is to understand the diversity and function of microorganisms. They are more numerous and diverse than all other living organisms – there is no place on earth they do not colonize. There are mainly three main reasons for their success: their immense metabolic capacities, a great ability to adapt to environmental changes, and a wide range of interactions with other organisms. Whether by their indispensable role in the global cycles of matter, the conversion of atmospheric greenhouse gases or their numerous interactions with humans, animals and plants - microorganisms decisively shape life on earth.
Like all the other over 80 Max Planck Institutes, we conduct basic research, because, as Max Planck said: "Insight must precede application." A fundamental understanding of processes and interrelationships is prerequisite for any medical or technological innovation. We use state-of-the-art technologies in combination with computer modeling and analysis as well as synthetic biology methods.