To study biochemical processes and macromolecules, i. e. proteins, DNA, RNA or carbohydrates, our researchers use methods and techniques from classical chemistry, physics, molecular biology, microbiology, biotechnology and also computer science on a routine basis. They are interested in the structure of molecules, how they function and how they interact at the molecular or cellular level, and also in understanding
their role in an organism. Depending on the analytical method, biomolecules, such as proteins, are first extracted from cells. Using various separation techniques such as centrifugation, gel electrophoresis or chromatography, cell lysates can then be separated according to their properties, such as size or charge. To make certain molecules visible in the microscope, they can be labeled in various ways and certain structures can be stained. Genetic engineering enables the targeted production or manipulation of proteins.
For successful research, the method services, provided by so-called facilities is an important pillar of the institute. These central facilities support all departments with their specialist expertise by providing a chemistry service, performing DNA sequencing, microscopy service and protein production as well as analysis service.