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Phytoplankton Ecology

Our research addresses mechanisms and consequences of phytoplankton biodiversity changes in coastal and open seas. Using a variety of approaches including time series analyses of monitoring data, physiological experiments with cultured phytoplankton isolates, analyses of intraspecific genetic and phenotypic diversity and resurrection of past populations from resting stages in “sediment archives”, we investigate the response of phytoplankton communities and populations to environmental change.  The data is used in ecosystem models projecting phytoplankton changes under different scenarios of future environmental conditions and assessing phytoplankton driven ecosystem functions.


Gruppe Maerz 2019
Regina Hansen, Katharina Berg, Anke Kremp, Susanne Busch, Christian Burmeister


Research topics

  • Phytoplankton life cycles and adaptation
  • Resting stages, sediments as reservoirs of diversity and archives of change
  • Expansion of harmful and toxic algal blooms in the Baltic Sea
  • DNA methods in phytoplankton monitoring


Group members

Dr. Anke Kremp (Group leader)
Susanne Busch (Monitoring: Phytoplankton composition)
Regina Hansen (Monitoring: phytoplankton sedimentation)
Christian Burmeister (Monitoring: Chlorophyll)
Eike Wolf (Student assistent)
Katharina Berg (Master Student)