Although bacteria represent an important source of antiinfectives and other pharmaceutical compounds, natural product research has so far been limited to few phylogenetic groups but has largely neglected the major part of bacterial diversity. The current project aims to assemble and operate a novel biodiscovery pipeline for the detection, isolation, screening and biobanking of previously unknown types of bacterial producers as well as yeasts from high biodiversity Indonesian ecosystems. In order to effectively target such novel producers, unique ecosystems that are characterized by tight biotic interactions have been selected for sampling. Intimate associations involve bacteria that synthesize specific compounds to either communicate with, modulate or inhibit neighboring organisms, and therefore offer a higher probability to discover novel types of bacterial producers. The project will thus focus on microbial communities associated with or colonizing endemic plants or animals, biofilms, unusual soils and springs, or aposematic higher organisms. A combination of second and third generation sequencing technology, innovative cultivation approaches, and quality controlled biobanking in the Indonesian and German culture collections including appropriate data management will be employed to recover, safeguard, and document bacterial producer strains from these sources. An important part of the program is the bioactivity guided isolation and characterization of the metabolites produced by these microorganisms. The project will integrate the complementary expertise of German and Indonesian microbiologists and organic chemists. A legal and contractual framework for the rights and obligations of all partners will be established that includes a mutually beneficial plan for intellectual property rights.

German partners

Prof. Dr. Jörg Overmann, Microbial Ecology and DiversityLeibniz-Institut DSMZ - German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures, Braunschweig

Prof. Dr. Peter Kämpfer, Microbiology of Recycling Process, Justus Liebig Universität Giessen

Prof. Dr. Timo Niedermeyer, Secondary Metabolites, Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

Prof. Dr. Stefan Schulz, Organic Chemistry, Technische Universität Braunschweig

Indonesian partners

Dr. Achmad Dinoto, Microbiology, Research Center for Biology
Indonesian Institute of Sciences (Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia) – LIPI

Dr. Atit Kanti, Yeast Curator, Research Center for Biology
Indonesian Institute of Sciences (Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia) – LIPI

Dr. Wien Kusharyoto, Biotechnology, Research Center for Biology
Indonesian Institute of Sciences (Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia) – LIPI

Dr. Anis Mahsunah, Biotechnology, Biotech Center, Balai Pengkajian Bioteknologi (BPPT)

Prof. Dr. Amin Soebandrio, Microbiology, Director of Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology, Jakarta

Dr. Safrina G. Malik, Molecular Biology, Senior Research Fellow, Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology, Jakarta