Molecular biological methods in connection with the analysis of the stable isotope fractionation allow the precise determination of in situ microbial degradation. The requested expertise is essential for the implementation of concept into modern ground water research. A data-base of compound specific isotope fractionation factors and gene probes for the detection of the specific microbial degradation pathway will enable us to estimate in situ biodegradation precisely. With this data for relevant organic contaminants, our proposed approach can be widely used in ground water research. The development of new tools for monitoring the natural attenuation processes and for the assessment of the degradation potential enables us to develop improved remediation and management strategies for contaminated soils, aquifers and sediments. Thus, the requested knowledge improves the competence of our department in the dedicated research area and increases the European and national competitiveness. Moreover, the requested experts support the set up of a new laboratory for molecular and anaerobe biology at the department and train our staff to apply molecular biological methods in their projects.