Molecular Physiology

The research within Prof. Lothar Willmitzer's department is focused on metabolism in its broadest sense, primarily using reverse genetics to alter plants and functional genomic approaches to analyse the pleiotropic effects of these alterations.

Metabolic Networks

The department of Prof. Mark Stitt studies a wide set of physiological processes involved in orchestrating photosynthetic carbon metabolism, nitrogen and phosphate utilisation, growth, and storage. Systems biology will be emphasised and forward and reverse genetic tools will often be used.

Organelle Biology, Biotechnology and Molecular Ecophysiology

Prof. Ralph Bock and his department focus on plant cell organelles (plastids and mitochondria), their physiology and gene expression as well as their metabolic and genetic interactions with the nucleo-cytosolic compartment.

Max Planck Research Groups

The MPG continually supports up to three Independent Research Groups in our institute, each for a period of five to six years. Highly competitive young scientists lead these groups, which operate outside of the departmental structure of the Institute.

Infrastructure Groups and Service Units

The MPI-MP supports so called Infrastructure Groups and Service Units. The leaders of these groups provide support within their areas of expertise for other institute scientists while most of them simultaneously run their own research programmes.

Cooperative Research Groups

To tighten our links with German universities, we maintain joint projects with university research groups. Such cooperation allows an intense exchange of scientific information and expertise.

Current News

Press releases

Obituary for Dirk Hincha

August 18, 2020

With great sadness we have to announce the sudden death of Dirk Hincha, group leader of the central infrastructure group ‘Genomics and Transcript Profiling’. Dirk passed away last week unexpectedly at the age of 62.

What we can learn from survivalists

July 31, 2020

At locations with extreme environmental conditions, the motto for organisms is: adapt or perish. In the case of plants that are anchored in the soil by their roots or algae, inability or ability to develop adaptation mechanisms is decisive for life ...

Genetic key to "healthy" tea

July 29, 2020

Tea (Camellia sinensis) is one of the world's most popular drinks with a wide range of flavours and health benefits. Researchers from Huazhong Agricultural University of Wuhan (China), Forschungszentrum Jülich, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf ...

76 scientists in 16 countries call for a philanthropic foundation

June 24, 2020

In the latest issue of the renowned journal Nature, scientists across Europe, under the heading "Europe: yes to philanthropy", have called for the establishment of a "European Foundation for the Prevention of Environmental and Health Crises".

How to join MPI-MP

IMPRS and PhD programme

University graduates who are interested in modern plant research can work on their doctorate at our institute. Our doctoral programme is open to students from all countries. The doctoral research is done under the guidance of our directors, group leaders and senior scientists. We work closely with the University of Potsdam where most of our doctoral students are enrolled during their doctoral studies. The doctoral thesis is submitted and defended at the University, which also confers the doctoral degree.

Job Offers

No Vacancies

Further Information


Those who want to visit the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology and want to learn more about the research at the institute can do so in various ways. The institute takes part in a number of events every year and also organizes events itself.

Media Library

Scientists of the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology are are well-known experts in their field of study. In the movies shown here, which are either excerpts from TV shows or short individual productions, they give you an insight into their work.


On this page you find the contents of our English language brochure. If you would like to receive a free copy of the brochure, please send an e-mail to the PR department with your address.

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