Current Highlight
Environmental DNA Time Series in Ecology

The Senckenberg Nature Research Society, the Goethe-University Frankfurt, the Justus-Liebig-University Gießen and the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME have initiated a joint-venture to link the basic study of genomes from a broad taxonomic basis with genomics-based application.

The Centre is initially funded by Hesse’s “state initiative for the development of scientific and economic excellence” (LOEWE initiative) and was launched in January 2018.
Since 2008, the state of Hesse has been promoting outstanding future-oriented research projects with its excellence program LOEWE. Since then, 14 LOEWE centers and 54 LOEWE priorities have been selected for competitive support in competitive procedures.

ProLOEWE is the network of LOEWE research projects: they want to inform about their activities together, create short paths to their research and intensify their cooperation. An overview of the LOEWE research projects can be found at

Main objectives of LOEWE-TBG

The central focus of LOEWE-TBG is to extend biodiversity research to the genomic basis of biological diversity in order to make this diversity accessible for basic and applied research. We will achieve this objective by

  • establishing a new, taxonomically broad and publicly available genome collection, the Senckenberg Biodiversity Genome Collection (SBGC) as an innovative digital and specimen-based museum collection
  • comparatively studying genomics diversity across the tree of life to gain a better understanding of the origin and functions of all levels of biological diversity (from genes to ecosystems)
  • making genomic resources accessible for societal-demand driven applied research, e.g. as resources for a sustainable bioeconomy or nature and species conservation.

The inaugural steering committee of LOEWE-TBG. From left to right Prof. Dr. Axel Janke (Speaker, Senckenberg), Prof. Dr. Markus Pfenninger (Co-Speaker, Senckenberg), PD Dr. Steffen Pauls (Co-Speaker, Senckenberg), Prof. Dr. Ingo Ebersberger (Representative Comparative Genomics, Goethe-University), Oliver Kreitinger (Representative of Administration, Senckenberg), Dr. Carsten Nowak (Representative Genomic Biomonitoring, Senckenberg), Dr. Julia Krohmer (Representative Translation, Senckenberg), Dr. Miklós Bálint (Representative Functional Environmental Genomics, Senckenberg), Prof. Dr. Klimpel (Representative of Goethe-University), Prof. Dr. Böhning-Gaese (Representative of Senckenberg Board of Directors), Prof. Dr. Andreas Vilcinskas (Representative of Justus-Liebig-University). Missing: Prof. Dr. Dr. Gerd Geisslinger (Representative of Fraunhofer Institut for Molecular and Applied Ecology). Foto: TBG


Projects

Comparative Genomics
Strategies to optimize the analysis of gene flow in speciation at the example of giraffes, bears, whales and seals
Disentangling a strand of silk: evolution of silk biosynthesis and associated behaviour in caddisflies
Mobile Genetic Elements – novel treasures in unexplored genomes
Evolution and function of species interaction networks on the example of pioneering species

Natural Products Genomics:
Preclinical in vitro testing

Animal Venomics
Screening of in other subprojects identified natural products on biological activity and potential pharmaceutical application

Functional Environmental Genomics:
– Influence of anthropogenic substances on the germ cell mutation rate

Soil Metagenomics

Genomic Biomonitoring:
– MiGen Analysis: Microbiome and genome analyses of medically relevant hematophagous arthropods