Welcome to the Microbial Oceanography Lab at the University of Vienna

Marine microbes are uniquely important to life and form the major pillars of the biosphere. Their unique metabolisms allow marine microbes to carry out many steps of the biogeochemical cycles that other organisms are unable to complete.

Microbial oceanography focuses on deciphering the metabolic activity of Bacteria and Archaea thriving in the open ocean and relating their community composition to the biogeochemical fluxes in the water masses. This requires an interdisciplinary approach linking microbial and molecular ecology to biogeochemistry and to large scale water mass transport studied in physical oceanography.

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Our main focus is the microbial oceanography of the deep ocean where the prokaryotic activity is relatively low compared to the euphotic zone. The deep ocean comprises about 70% of the total ocean volume and hence deep-water microbes mediate a substantial fraction of the biogeochemical cycles with thus far unknown metabolic pathways. We develop and improve available methods in molecular biology and biogeochemistry to make them usable in the most oligotrophic parts of the ocean. Then the information from biology and biogeochemistry is linked for a better understanding of how the microbial community might work in the dark ocean.


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After years of hard work, Nicole defended her PhD thesis with great success.


After years of hard work, Barbara defended her PhD thesis with great success.


Members of the MOVie team are currently on a six-week research expedition in the Atlantic on board of the Spanish research vessel Sarmiento de Gamboa....


Thursday, 28 March, 16.45-18:15

Lecture Hall II, UZA I


EU Policy Officer for Climate Change

EU: What are we doing for the Environment, Climate...


Monday, 26.11.2018, 18:00 at Sky Lounge, University of Vienna, Oskar-Morgenstern-Platz 1, 1090 Vienna


Do not miss us tomorrow on (Austrian)TV! We will be appearing on a small documentary about our research on Microplastics (at 18:35 in ORF 1) and a...

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Video Testimonials

Maria Pinto, PhD Student

Chie Amano, PostDoc

Federico Baltar, Assistant Professor