The general area of planned research will focus on improve knowledge of marine processes, ecosystems and interactions, better assessment of naturally occurring mechanisms of ecosystem functioning and partly reducing the effects of anthropogenic activities on the marine environment and coastal processes monitoring. More specifically ecological significance and enzymology of aquaticmicrobes, mainly marine aerobic heterotrophic bacteria degrading allochtonous dissolved in marine coastal waters, the German Wadden Sea. The questions addressed include the qualitative and quantitative characterization of the major sources of allochtonous and recalcitrant DOM and the controlling factors, which make it available to heterotrophic bacteria. An essential part of the studies is to characterize the composition of the microbial communities and to identify their major players involved in the turnover of DOM. Because diversity and physiology of natural bacteria are mostly unknown aquatic bacteria may carry novel enzyme systems of potential biotechnological importance.
Structural similarity of DOM compounds motivates study of microbial consortia competent to degrade refractory organic matter in order to investigate the occurrence of enzymatic processes of potential importance for development of biotechnological refinement for example wood and oil substances .The educational objectives: Learn new methods and procedures which are in routine use or under development in host institute, but not in applicant's home institute to optimize Primary interest to applicant is to learn more about chemical analyses of humic matter and proteomics. Good quality scientific community on the field of environmental microbiology existing in host institute has great importance for applicant. Training in scientific writing and general presenting to publicity. Long-range professional goals: Establish direct scientific contacts between the applicant's home institute and the host institute. Get higher level professional training and scientific experience. This proposal is a direct continuation of the applicant ' s previous research on aquatic microbial ecology. The gained experience will be utilised in applied and basic research projects after return to home institution, as well as in training courses at the home university.