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Faculty of Biology, Chemistry & Earth Sciences

Collaborative Research Centre 1357 Microplastics

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​Zentrale Serviceteilprojekte

Z01: Microplastic particle production and analysis

The service project Z01 will produce chemically more complex, environmentally relevant and well-characterized MP particles with defined morphology on a larger scale for CRC 1357, with a particular focus on smaller size classes (0.5 - 20 μm). Another focus is the preparation of MP with known additive and/or residual monomer content, and of MP in artificially weathered form. In addition to the accurate characterization of the provided MP particles, the KeyLab Microplastic analysis coordinated by Z01 will provide all CRC 1357 members with access to particle-based analysis of MP samples from their experiments.

Principal Investigators: Prof. Seema Agarwal, Dr. Martin Löder

Z02: Genomics and bioinformatics

In the proposed CRC 1357, the biological effects of MP on organisms, tissue and cells (A projects) and the mechanisms for the degradation of plastics (C projects) are to be investigated, among other things. The service project Z02 supports these experiments with appropriate analysis methods such as transcriptome analysis or meta-transcriptome analysis and microbiome analysis. In the case of organisms without available genome assemblies and/or functional gene annotations, these are provided by a reference transcriptome assembly and the subsequent functional annotation of the potential protein-coding genes.

Principal Investigators: PD Alfons Weig

Z03: Central Tasks of the CRC 1357

The Z03 is the central coordination office and is responsible for all organisational, administrative and budgetary tasks in the CRC 1357. As an interface between science, administration and the public, it is the central point. The Z03 accompanies the meetings of the committees in the CRC 1537, such as the governance board, the members' and doctoral students' assembly, and the directorate of the doctoral programme. For the structured interdisciplinary training of doctoral students, the doctoral programme "Interdisciplinary Microplastic Sciences (InterMicro)" was established. The Z03 organises the scientific events in the CRC 1357, such as the hybrid and publicly accessible CRC 1357 Microplastic Seminar, and works closely with the project Ö01 for public relations measures. Furthermore, the Z03 coordinates the measures to promote equal opportunities and diversity as well as all measures to promote young academics.

Principal Investigators: Prof. Christian Laforsch

Ö01: Public relations work of the CRC 1357

Due to the visibility of improperly disposed plastic waste in the environment, the microplastics (MP) issue is receiving a lot of attention, some of it very emotional. However, plastics as a material play an important role in resource efficiency and climate protection. To further promote social and political solutions to this environmental problem, scientific expertise must be integrated and communicated in a target group-oriented manner. Science communication in CRC 1357 should therefore convey confidence in its research's importance for society's good. To achieve this, successful existing formats and events are to be continued and expanded, and new innovative formats, such as an interactive travelling exhibition, are to be installed.

Principal Investigators: Prof. Christian Laforsch

Webmaster: Dr.rer.nat. Melanie Pöhlmann

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