...aims to understand microbial communities with a combination of lab experiments and mathematical modeling. Microbes are all around us and even live in large numbers on and in our bodies where they directly impact our health and well-being. Although microbial communities are such an essential part of our lives, we know very little about how they function. Our lab aims to gain a deeper general understanding of microbial communities, especially how interactions between microbes shape the overall communities and determine their functions. We believe a better understanding of microbial communities allows us to develop new ways of treating a variety of diseases.



May, 2022: Welcome Albane! Albane is a fellow of the Cluster of Excellence for Machine Learning and is (co-)hosted by our lab. Check out the team page for more details.

April, 2022: Welcome Fatima! Fatima joined us as PhD student and will explore more the medical side of microbial communities. See the team page for more details.

March, 2022: Christoph will participate in the lecture "Bioinformatic Methods in Microbiology" this summer semester. For more details check out the teaching page.

September, 2021: Or and Christoph wrote a preview article for Trends in Microbiology. Check it out here if you want to know what is going on with this cat. Cat image by

news archive


C. Ratzke*, J. Barrere*, J. Gore
"Strength of species interactions determines biodiversity and stability in microbial communities"
Nature Ecology and Evolution 4, 376–383 (2020)

D. Amor, C. Ratzke, J. Gore
"Transient invaders can induce shifts between alternative stable states of microbial communities"
Science Advances, Vol. 6, no. 8 (2020)

C. Ratzke*, J.Denk*, J.Gore
"Ecological suicide in microbes"
Nature Ecology and Evolution 2, 867–872 (2018)

C. Ratzke, J. Gore
“Modifying and reacting to the environmental pH can drive bacterial interactions”
PLOS Biology 16(3): e2004248 (2018)

C. Ratzke, J.Gore
“Self-organized patchiness facilitates survival in a cooperatively growing Bacillus subtilis population”
Nature Microbiology, Article number: 16022 (2016)