In a nutshell my research interest is centered on the elucidation of the composition of lipids and their biochemical function within cell membranes, ranging from unicellular bacteria, archaea and algae to multicellular eukaryotes including plants, animals and human beings. To this point I dedicated my career to the advancement of fundamental knowledge of lipidomics, with my main objective to decode the complex molecular structure of lipid molecules – the building blocks of all cellular life – to its biological function. This structure-function analysis of lipid molecules builds the foundation of the recently established membrane lipid code crackers society (MLCCS).
As research scientist, high resolution mass spectrometry of complex environmental samples, microbial enrichments or pure culture experiment has become my most valuable tool to characterize as well as quantify the prior unknown molecular composition of the present microbial and eukaryal biomass. I got introduced to the analysis and interpretation of microbial membrane lipids during my PhD, where I learned how to decipher complex environmental systems by applying the so called biomarker concept. Later, as postdoctoral scholar, I extended my research portfolio on the ecology, evolution and energy metabolisms of particularly extremophilic organisms.