There are microorganisms which catalyze the conversion of molecular hydrogen. According to the transition metal of their active sites, they have been classified as [NiFe]-, [FeFe]- or [Fe] hydrogenases.

The detailed investigation of the reaction mechanisms of these enzymes will lead to

  • understanding of nature's design principles
  • transformation of insight into biomimetic systems
  • design and development of hydrogen fuel cells.

Current research areas are

  • characterization of oxygen-tolerant hydrogenases
  • combination of photosynthesis and hydrogenase for light-driven hydrogen production
  • investigation of alternative hydrogen generating enzymes.
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