We dedicate our research to natural products from micro-organisms and the infection biology of pathogenic fungi. Microbial natural products serving as mediators in the biological communication are essential for our lives. However, they play an ambivalent role in this process: On the one hand, they are involved in the emergence of numerous infectious diseases; on the other hand, they belong to the most important sources of medicinal products like antibiotics.

In order to examine microbial natural products and to understand infectious diseases better, we combine both areas of research. We aim to elucidate how microorganisms produce both pathogenic substances and pharmacologically relevant components. Beyond that, these substances of micro-organisms serve as instruments of communication among themselves. Another module of our research is the interaction of pathogenic microorganisms with their host. We are interested in investigating the methods and tricks that both parties use in this process.

Numerous individual joint projects enable us to acquire new knowledge in the field of biosynthesis and the function of natural products. We use this knowledge to develop innovative ingredients for the diagnosis and therapy of illnesses, including new anti-infectives. Implementing our research results and the models derived thereof, we contribute to the development of a systems biology of infections.

All units at the Leibniz-HKI collaborate to accomplish those goals.

Collaborative projects

Our scientists maintain the collaboration with partners of diverse disciplines. Therefore, the Leibniz-HKI has been the (co-)initiator of numerous joint research projects and coordinated programmes. Knowledge and technologies, research data and materials are exchanged and further developed by using this platform of regional, national and international cooperation. Thereby, the scope of collaboration ranges from the joint examination of research projects and the exchange of data and results up to the common use of the infrastructure. Especially in Jena, the HKI contributes to the development of a scientific profile and like this, creates long-term productive structures and a highly-qualified working environment.

Please see the bar on the left for more details regarding a selection of the most important joint projects and coordinated programmes that the Leibniz-HKI is currently committed to.