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News and Highlights

September 2019
Daniela Brocke started her master thesis project about single-cell analysis of bacterial conjugation in the µscale group
August 2019A new paper was published in cooperation with the Institute of Energy and Climate Research (IEK-6): “A microfluidic experiment and pore scale modelling diagnostics for assessing mineral precipitation and dissolution in confined spaces” (
August 2019
3 years DFG Project granted! Christian Dusny, Alexander Grünberger and Dietrich Kohlheyer have successfully acquired funding for a joint project funded within the DFG priority program (SPP2170 - INTERZELL): Single-cell mass balancing of synthetic co-cultures (SiMBal): Quantitative, spatio-temporally resolved analysis of mass exchange between microbial cells. At the µscale group, Bastian Wollenhaupt will work on microbial single-cell analysis applying a microfluidic batch cultivation system, starting October 2019.
August 2019
Keitaro Kasahara joins the group as visiting research student from Keio University in Japan for a project about oxygen sensing systems in single-cell analysis.
 May 2019Markus Leygeber gives a talk on “On-Chip Oxygen Control in Microfluidics” at the 5th International Conference on the Implementation of Microreactor Technology in Biotechnology in Cavtat, Croatia
 April 2019Alexander Grünberger is awarded with the “DECHEMA-Hochschullehrer-Nachwuchspreis für Biotechnologie 2019” for his lecture “Single-cell bioreactors in biotechnology: Science or Fiction?” Press release of the DECHEMA
 April 2019Four new papers are published by the µscale Bioengineering group: Reproduction of Large-Scale Bioreactor Conditions on Microfluidic Chips (; A microfluidic photobioreactor for simultaneous observation and cultivation of single microalgal cells or cell aggregates (;  Analyzing Microbial Population Heterogeneity - Expanding the Toolbox of Microfluidic Single-Cell Cultivations (; Microbial Single-Cell Growth Response at Defined Carbon Limiting Conditions (
 January 2019Alexander Grünberger is appointed as new member of the Young council of the Academy of Sciences and Art of North Rhine Westphalia: Press release of the Academy of Science and Art
January 2019
A microfluidic co-cultivation platform to investigate microbial interactions at defined microenvironments: new article online in the RSC journal Lab-on-a-Chip:
December 2018
Mareike Thelen successfully finishes her master’s project on “Growth of P. Chrysogenum in microfluidic cell cultivation systems”
October 2018
Qiratt Akhtar starts her M. Sc. project on “Single-cell analysis of controllable interaction in a synthetic Corynebacterium glutamicum consortium”
September 2018
Markus Leygeber attends the 1st International EUROMBR Training Course at the Center of Pharmaceutical Engineering in Braunschweig
August 2018
Phuong Ho successfully finishes his master’s thesis on "Model-based feasibility analysis for the reproduction of large-scale bioreactor conditions on microfluidic chips"
May 2018
Alina Burmeister presents her recent results about microfluidic co-cultivation at the Himmelfahrtstagung held in Magdeburg, Germany
May 2018
Bastian Wollenhaupt starts his M. Sc. project on “Single-cell analysis of Bacillus subtilis population heterogeneity in isolated microfluidic chambers”
March 2018Lina Hollmann starts her B.Sc. project on Microfluidic co-cultivation – a commensalism interaction study (University of Bielefeld).
March 2018Mareike Thelen starts her B.Sc. project on Cultivation methods and growth kinetics of Penicillium chrysogenum in microfluidic systems (FH Jülich).
March 2018Three new papers published by the microscale bioengineering group on Quantitative measurements in single-cell analysis (, Quantitative modelling of nutrient-limited growth of bacterial colonies in microfluidic cultivation ( and Microbial single-cell analysis in picoliter-sized batch cultivation chambers (
March 2018Alina Burmeister gives a talk on Entering the next dimension: Microfluidic single-cell analysis of bacterial interaction at the 5th BioProScale Symposium held in Berlin
March 2018Markus Leygeber starts his Ph.D. project on Dynamic oxygen control and anaerobe cultivation methods in microfluidic systems
January 2018Phuong Ho starts his M.Sc. project dealing with the Simulation of the dynamics in microfluidic cultivation devices (TU Berlin).
October 2017Three new papers published by the microscale bioengineering group in 2017 on the analysis and engineering of bacterial heterogeneity (, microfluidic circuits for chip-level flow control (DOI: 10.1002/adfm.201700430) and the modelling of solute distributions in single-cell bioreactors (DOI: 10.1111/1751-7915.12708)
October 2017Alina Burmeister presents her poster Microfluidic single-cell co-cultivation: From proof of concept to first application at the DGFZ 2017, Jena, Germany
July 2017Alina Burmeister starts her PhD project on Microfluidic analysis and control of microbial co-cultures in the microscale group in cooperation with the multiscale bioengineering group of the Bielefeld University
March 2017The Microscale Bioengineering Group has been evaluated very successfully –> approaching next 3 years funding period!
May 2017Christoph Westerwalbesloh receives the BEST POSTER AWARD 2017 for his contribution “Models for Developing and Optimising Biotech Production” at the Himmelfahrtstagung 2017 held in Neu-Ulm, Germany
April 2017Dorina Lindemann starts her internship focusing on the growth kinetics of C. glutamicum in microfluidic single-cell cultivation systems
April 2017Carl Brehl successfully finished his Diploma thesis on single-cell cultivation of microalgae
April 2017Eugen Kaganovitch gives a talk on the “Batch cultivation of bacterial cells in picoliter-scale bioreactors” at the 4th International Conference on the Implementation of Microreactor Technology in Biotechnology in Bled, Slovenia
March 2017Daniel Albrecht starts his internship in the microscale bioengineering group
March 2017Deniz Dogan starts his B.Sc. project on the “Design optimization of a microfluidic batch cultivation system”
March 2017Annika Rudat gives a talk on “Spatiotemporal analysis of synthetic microbial communities at the single-cell level in microfluidic interaction compartments” at the 6th International Conference on Microbial Communication for Young Scientists in Jena, Germany
February 2017 Annika Rudat presents her poster “Microfluidic cultivation chamber for the investigation of synthetic microbial co-cultures on single-cell level: From the development to first application” at the BioProcessingDays 2017 in Recklinghausen, Germany
January 2017Maximilian Krischer successfully finished his Master assignment on “Sensing and control of dynamic oxygen levels during single-cell analysis.”
January 2017Xenia Steurer starts her internship focusing on microfluidic batch cultivation
November 2016Alina Burmeister successfully finished her Master assignment on “Microfluidic heterogeneity analysis of fluorescence-based gene expression of Bacillus strains on single-cell level.”
September 2016Annika Rudat starts her Master project on the development and application of a microfluidic system for bacterial co-cultivation
September 2016Loreen-Kristin Andrick joins the microscale bioengineering group as biological technical assistant
September 2016 Annika Rudat starts her Master project in the microscale bioengineering group
July 2016Christoph Westerwalbesloh, Eugen Kaganovitch, Alexander Grünberger and Christopher Probst present their results at the EMBL Conference Microfluidics 2016 in Heidelberg
June 2016Annika Rudat starts her internship in the Microscale Bioengineering group
June 2016Robin Rathmakers starts his three month internship in the Microscale Bioengineering group
May 2016Alexander Grünberger presents the results of “Bacterial phase diagrams” at the “Himmelfahrtstagung: New Frontiers for Biotech-Processes” in Koblenz
April 2016Iska Steffens and Christoph Westerwalbesloh present their results at the 4th BioProScale Symposium "Inhomogeneities in large-scale bioprocesses: System biology and process dynamics” in Berlin
April 2016Alexander Grünberger gives a key note lecture on “Bioprocesses under magnification: Learning from single cells about large-scale processes” at the 4th BioProScale Symposium "Inhomogeneities in large-scale bioprocesses: System biology and process dynamics” in Berlin
April 2016Carl Brehl studying Bioprocess Engineering at the Technical University of Dresden starts his 8 months Master project on single-cell cultivation of microalgae in cooperation with the IBG-2
April 2016Alina Burmeister studying Pharmaceutical Biotechnology at the HAW Hamburg starts her 8 months Master project
March 2016Iska Steffens successfully finished her Bachelor assignment on “Phase diagrams to predict microbial population heterogeneity of lac-Operon based gene-expression in E. coli”
March 2016Alexander Grünberger gives a lecture on “Bacterial phase diagrams: Using engineering concepts to predict cell-to-cell heterogeneity of microbial gene expression” at the Annual Conference of the Association for General and Applied Microbiology (VAAM)
March 2016Maximilian Krischer studying Biotechnology at the FH Aachen starts his 8 month Master project on oxygen control in microfluidic devices
March 2016Janis Schlesinger starts his internship focusing on Fluorescence Microscope standardization
February 2016 Christopher Probst successfully completes his PhD project on the development of microfluidic devices for single-cell analysis by giving a presentation at the University of Siegen
January 2016Philipp Böhnke starts his internship focusing on Fluorescence Microscope characterization
December 2015Christoph Westerwalbesloh starts a joint project with the Modeling and Simulation group as a PhD student, focusing on modeling and simulation of transport phenomena within microfluidic devices for the cultivation of microorganisms.
November 2015Anna Schechtel successfully finished her Master assignment on “Monitoring rapid pH changes during microbial single cell cultivations of C. glutamicum.”
October 2015Christopher Probst participates in the 19th International Conference on Miniaturized Systems for Chemistry and Life Sciences ( μTAS 2015) held at Hwabaek International Convention Center in Gyeongju, South Korea
October 2015Alexandra Drechsel joins the Microscale Bioengineering group as a Trainee
October 2015Eugen Kaganovitch takes part in the Sino-German Summer School on Bioprocess and Biosystems Engineering for Industrial Biotechnology held at the TUHH in Hamburg
September 2015Eugen Kaganovitch joins the Microscale Bioengineering group as a PhD student focusing on the development of new Microfluidic Devices for single cell analysis
September 2015Lina Hollmann finished her three months internship
September 2015Ena Žunić successfully finished her Master project on oxygen control during single cell cultivation
April 2015Anna Schechtel studying Microbiology at the RWTH Aachen University, starts her Master assignment on “Monitoring rapid pH changes during microbial single cell cultivations of C. glutamicum.”
April 2015Iska Steffens, currently enrolled as Biotechnology student at the University of Applied Sciences Darmstadt, starts her 8 months internship and Bachelor assignment within the framework of the BMBF funded Optosys project.
March 2015Dr. Alexander Grünberger received the PhD price at the VAAM/Marburg in March 2015 for his PhD thesis “Single-Cell Analysis of Microbial Production Strains in Microfluidic Bioreactors“.
March 2015Lina Hollmann starts her three months internship
February 2015Technical bias of microcultivation environments on single cell physiology: New paper online in Lab on a Chip.!divAbstract
February 2015Ena Žunić studying Electrical Engineering : Environment Engineering at the Hochschule Niederrhein Krefeld starts her 8 months Master project on oxygen control during single cell cultivation.
January 2015Laura Beust completes her apprenticeship in the group and will continue to work in the SenseUp Project team
December 2014The whole Microscale Bioengineering Group wishes everyone a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!
November 2014The group hosts a workshop for the International Autumn School on Synthetic Biology on Single Cell Analysis in Microfluidic Devices.
November 2014Alexander Grünberger successfully completes his doctorate by giving a presentation outside of his subject area on Bioregenerative Lebenserhaltungssysteme at the RWTH Aachen University.
November 2014The group hosts the DFG SPP1617 Workshop on Single cells and single molecule analysis.
November 2014Dietrich Kohlheyer is now professor (W1) at RWTH Aachen University at the faculty of Mechanical Engineering.
November 2014Alexander Grünberger is awarded the BioSC PhD-Competence Award for his excellent performance as a graduate student.
October 2014Abhijeet Singh gives his introductory presentation on the topic of his master thesis Use of a Microfluidic Platform in Combination with Fluorescence Time Lapse Microscopy for Physiology Studies and Controlled Stress Experiments of Soil Associated Bacteria.
October 2014Alexander Grünberger is awarded the Klaus Goerttler Award 2014 at the 24th Annual Conference of the German Society for Cytometry in Dresden for his contribution to the establishment of a novel type of microfluidic single-cell culture system and its first application in fundamental microbiology and applied biotechnology.
October 2014Alexander Grünberger makes a conference contribution on Picoliter Bioreactors: Learning from Single Cells about Large-Scale Bioprocesses at the 24th Annual conference of the German Society for Cytometry in Dresden
October 2014Alexander Grünberger gives a lecture on Single-cell Bioreactors boost Bioprocess Development: New Insights into Cellular Metabolism in a seminar at the Center for Advancing Electronics at the Technical University of Dresden.
September 2014Alexander Grünberger gives a lecture on Picoliter Bioreactors: Learning from Single Cells about Large Scale Processes at the iGEM Meetup in Aachen.
September 2014 Abhijeet Singh studying AgriGenomics at University of Kiel starts his 8 months Master project on single cell physiology analysis of bacteria.
September 2014 Christian Freier and Sophie Weber will stay for several more months in the group as a student assistants during their Master studies.
August 2014Christian Freier Successfully finished his Bachelor thesis entitled „Monitoring and control of dissolved oxygen concentrations in microfluidic single cell analysis”.
July 2014Alex and Christina present their recent results at the EMBL conference on Microfluidics in Heidelberg.
July 2014Sophie Weber successfully defends her Bachelor project on “Optimizing growth performance of Corynebacterium glutamicum at the single-cell level” at University of Applied Sciences Aachen/Jülich.
June 2014Official granting of the two BMBF funded projects “Optosys” and “MIE”.
April 2014Camillie Gautier from École Centrale Lyon, France, starts her 6 months internship on PDMS based valving and pulsing technology.
April 2014Julio Arreola successfully defends his Master Project on “Temperature control in microfluidics for single-cell analysis: development and characterization of thin-film sensors” at University of Applied Sciences Aachen/Jülich. Julio will now start his PhD project at Prof. Schönings lab at FH Jülich.
April 2014Alex gives a presentation at the 3rd BioProScale conference on "Inhomogeneities in large-scale bioprocesses: System biology and process dynamics" in Berlin.
April 2014Christian Sachs now starts as PhD research associate at the Modeling and Simulation Group in close cooperation with the Microscale Group.
March 2014Christian Freier studying Bionic Engineering at University of Applied Sciences Bocholt starts his 6 months intern and Bachelor project on oxygen control during single cell cultivation.
March 2014Christian Sachs successfully finishes his Master Project on “Automated High-Throughput Analysis of Single Bacteria in Microfluidic Habitats” at Goethe University Frankfurt.
January 2014Official start of the “Helmholtz Young Investigators Group Microscale Bioengineering”
September 2013Dietrich Kohlheyer receives a young investigators grant from the Helmholtz Association of 1.25 M€ for a total research period of 5 years
September 2013Sophie Weber, student at the University of Applied Sciences Aachen (Jülich) starts her 6 months internship project
August 2013Julio Arreola, student at the University of Applied Sciences Aachen (Jülich) starts with his Master project
June 2013Christina Krämer wins poster prize at the 2013 "How Dead is Dead III" held from 6-7 June in Berlin for her work entitled: „Continuous viability fluorescent staining of growing Corynebacterium glutamicum colonies without sample preparation in an automated microfluidic measurement system“
May 2013Johanna Heinrich successfully finshes her master thesis
May 2013Nadja Braun, cleanroom technican, starts on the BMBF funded OptoSys project
April 2013Christian Sachs from Frankfurt University starts with his master project
March 20132 new positions within the joint BMBF project OptoSys available
December 2012Philipp Frank successfully defends his Master thesis. He will move on with a PhD position at Dresden University
November 2012Opening party of the new live cell microscopy labs
October 2012Christina Krämer starts with her PhD project within the DFG funded Priority Program SPP1617: “Phenotypic heterogeneity and sociobiology of bacterial populations
August 2012Exceptional high growth rates of C. glutamicum under picoliter cultivation: New Paper online in Biotechnology and Bioengineering!
August 2012Johanna Heinrich, currently enroled at the RWTH, starts with her master project
July 2012Nobu Karippai starts his 8 week intership at the µScale group
April 2012Philipp Frank decided to stay for another 6 month for his Dipl. Ing. assignment
March 2012Alex Grünberger presents his latest results at the 2nd BioProScale Symposium in Berlin
March 2012First paper on a picoliter bioreactor accepted for publication in the RSC journal Lab-on-a-Chip:
January 2012Susanne Schmitz starts with her 2 months biotechnical internship
November 2011Alexander Grünberger gives an oral presentation @ Montreux Nanotech 2011, Montreux, CH
November 2011Philipp Frank starts his 4 month internship on PDMS flex valve technology.
November 2011Stefan Helfrich starts as the first hybrid µscale-Modsim Master student. He will work on automated image recognition software for single cell analysis.
October 2011Single Spot IR laser optical tweezers system installed. First cells successfully trapped!
October 2011Invited presentation @ the DGfZ conference 2011, Bonn, Germany
October 2011Microscale presents first results @ the µTAS 2011 conference in Seattle, USA
August 2011Stefan Helfrich (Bioinformatics, Universität des Saarlandes) starts on an 8 week practical internship
August 2011Agnes and Christopher celebrate their one year anniversary @ µscale
August 2011The Microscale Bioengineering group now online on Facebook

May 2011             


Master student Mengmeng Wang (Biomedical Engineering RWTH Aachen) starts her 6 months research assignment on “Prevention of bacterial cell adhesion for microfluidic single-cell analysis” 
May 2011Christopher Probst starts on a three year PhD assignment to implement an optical tweezers system for single cell research
March 2011Roshanak Ziaee (Master of Mechatronics, FH Aachen) successfully defended her Master thesis on the development of hydrodynamic E.Coli traps.
February 2011Christopher Probst successfully finished his “Diplom Ingenieur” assignment on the development of an incubator system for microfluidic PDMS chips.
December 2010First trapping and growing of single E.Coli cells in a microfluidic chip
November 2010First successful fabrication of SU8 based micro molds and eventually successful molding of PDMS Chips for single cell research
October 2010Dual layer SU8-2000 cleanroom fabrication process finally established
October 2010Fully automated NIKON Eclipse Ti microscope installed and running.
October 2010Grad Student Alex Grünberger starts his PhD project on single cell research of industrial production strains.
August 2010Christopher Probst starts his final thesis and Agnes Müller-Schröer starts as biotechnical assistant.
July 2010Microfluidics lab up and running. First molding of PDMS chips.
June 2010Roshanak Ziaee starts as the first Master Student her Master assignment.
May 2010Renovation of the labs and offices completed.
January 2010Foundation of the group Micro Scale Bioengineering.