Scientific Profile

Whereas plant physiology used to be a rather descriptive science, today attempts are being made to fathom the basic principles of plant processes and their development using methods of molecular biology and genetics. Understanding the interaction of plants with their environment is also a goal of our research.

Departments and research groups


The Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology is headed by three directors. Several working groups and project groups conduct research in each of the respective department. More detailed information on the respective research can be found on the following pages.

The research within Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Lothar Willmitzer's department, including seven research groups, 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. [more]
The department of Prof. Dr. Claudia Köhler with four different research groups studies genetic and epigenetic processes regulating flowering plant reproduction and their impact on plant speciation. The main focus is to understand processes regulating seed formation, seed growth and the establishment of hybridization barriers. [more]
Research of six research groups in the Department of Professor Dr. Ralph Bock focuses on the biology of the two DNA-containing cell organelles in plants, plastids (chloroplasts) and mitochondria, and their integration with the nucleocytosolic compartment. [more]
These groups have been a key part of support of junior scientists for over 50 years at the MPG. The appointment of Group Leader positions is subject to a rigorous, centrally managed selection procedure. [more]
The group 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. [more]
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. [more]
Emeriti of the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology [more]
Excellent young researchers are given the opportunity to establish a partner group in their country of origin. Currently, there are six partner groups at the MPI-MP. [more]
The websites of former research group leader are transfered to this site. The group leaders have moved on to jobs in industry or to universities in Germany and abroad. [more]
Here you can find the complete overview of all scientific publications sorted by working group or year of publication. [more]
The MPI of Molecular Plant Physiology hosts weekly seminars with outstanding researchers from all over the world, thus promoting exchange among scientists.
An overview of upcoming events can be found here. [more]
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