Microbial Viruses

Speaker (VAAM)
Prof. Dr. Stefanie Barbirz

Medical School Berlin
Hochschule für Gesundheit und Medizin
Rüdesheimer Straße 50
D-14197 Berlin

Co-Speaker (VAAM)
Dr. Katharina Höfer

Max Planck Institut für Terrestrische Mikrobiologie
Karl-von-Frisch-Strasse 16
35043 Marburg

Co-Speaker (DGHM)
Apl. Prof. Dr. Christiane Wolz

Interfakultäres Institut für Mikrobiologie und Infektionsmedizin
Auf der Morgenstelle 28
72076 Tübingen



Viruses of microorganisms have been an essential object of research in microbiology since their discovery more than a hundred years ago. Viruses influence the dynamics of microbial communities and global material cycles through their spread and expression of different lifestyles.
The research group is dedicated to microbial viruses in their entirety, i.e. the viruses of bacteria, archaea and microbial eukaryotes such as algae, fungi, protozoa and virophages. This very lively field of research benefits from advances in high-resolution microscopy, genomics, CRISPR/CAS techniques, proteomics and metabolomics. New work emphasises the influence of viruses and viral communities on microbial ecosystems. Research is recognising the unique diversity of microbial viruses and their life cycles, with the extensive viral gene pool impressively illustrating the complexity of microbial virus biology. Many viral gene functions that are not yet understood are the subject of future research. Microbial viruses are therefore an interdisciplinary cross-sectional topic for which the specialist group would like to offer points of contact, e.g. in microbial cell biology, regulation and signal transduction, pathogenicity, environmental microbiology, genomics and evolutionary biology. The global problem of antibiotic resistance is also focussing in particular on bacteriophages as components of biotechnological, medical and food technology applications.
At the VAAM annual conference in March 2020, the Microbial Viruses specialist group was founded as a joint specialist group with the DGHM. Its aim is to network members of both specialist societies on current research issues relating to microbial viruses and to jointly implement scientific activities. If you would like to become a specialist group member, please register with the VAAM office to receive regular information on specialist group activities.
We would be delighted to receive your ideas and your active participation in the founding phase of our specialist group!

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