Fungal Molecular Ecology & Biotechnology

I am a researcher interested in molecular ecology and biotechnology of fungi and other microorganism. At the moment I am working as a Senior Researcher in the group of Prof. Martin Hofrichter in the Unit Environmental Biotechnology, at the Technical University Dresden - International Graduate School Zittau [link].

I am responsible for teaching courses in “Botany for Biotechs” and “Applied Bioinformatics”.


Fungi provide essential services for ecosystems, such as decomposing organic matter, nutrient cycling, and in the case of mycorrhizal species, also nutrient transfer to plants. In forest ecosystems they are largely responsible for breakdown of lignocellulose. Activities of single fungal species or communities are difficult to access in soils. However, with current technologies (NGS & proteomics) we are able to access fungal diversity and activities in soil samples - thereby unraveling the so called “black box”.
My aim is to discover fungal functions at the molecular level. Specifically the expression of genes involved in carbon, nitrogen and other nutrient biogeochemical cycles are of major interest.


In current projects we follow the decomposition of wood in a large long-term experiment, the so called BELongDead experiment in Germany [link]. There we analyze changes of the molecular microbial community, their extracellular enzymes and changes in the decomposing wood (e.g. element content and lignin).
Accompanying, we isolate wood decomposing fungi and genome-sequencing them. Thus we gain molecular information, for example the number of genes potentially involved in lignocellulose decomposition. 

Currently we also obtained funding for a project with Vietnamese partners.

In minor projects, partners from other Universities and I analyze microbial communities in soils (e.g. vinyard soils) or wood. We also started to analyze plant genomes.

Photography is my hobby, I have a separate webpage you can access here.


Harald Kellner
  Environmental Biotechnology
  Technische Universitšt Dresden
  International Institute (IHI) Zittau
  Markt 23, 02763 Zittau, Germany


BELongDead experiment, 10 years old Fagus log


Anacamptis morio

  • News 1

    Currently we are running an IonChef and an IonS5 at IHI, perhaps a MinION from ONT in 2019.

  • News 2
  • News 3

Fungi exhibition at Museum Wiesbaden 2018


Home   About me   Genomics   Laccase Project   Morel Project   Other Projects   Impressum