Dr. at Max Planck Institute for chemical Ecology, Jena - Germany
Bernd Schneider is a senior researcher and head of the Biosynthesis/NMR group of the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Jena, Germany, since 1997. Between 1982 and 1996 he was a researcher at the Institute of Plant Biochemistry Halle, Germany. In 1991 he was awarded an Alexander von Humboldt fellowship to work at Munich University. He has published approximately 245 papers and review articles. He holds a doctoral degree in chemistry from the University of Halle and did his habilitation at the Universities of Halle and Jena.
Identification and de novo structure elucidation of natural products with ecological implications from natural sources is a major task of Bernd Schneider’s research group. Modern NMR methods are implemented into NMR-based plant metabolic profiling and metabolomics studies. For example, phenylphenalenone-producing plant families were recently studied in-depth in his group and numerous plant metabolic studies have been performed together with collaborators. Products of isolated or recombinant enzymes are another important subject for NMR-spectroscopic analysis. NMR spectrometers (700 and 500 MHz) equipped with cryogenically cooled probes are available for measuring mass-limited samples. LC-DAD-MS-NMR coupling is especially useful to identify natural products without isolation. Methods to analyze laser-microdissected samples by NMR spectroscopy and mass spectrometry have been developed in Bernd Schneider’s research group and employed for cell type-specific micrometabolic profiling. Stable-isotope labelling and retro-biosynthetic studies are carried in root cultures or by incubating plants under 18O or 13CO2 atmosphere. NMR and MS analyses of the target molecules provide information about precursor-product relationships, biosynthetic pathways and other metabolic processes. In addition to NMR-based labelling studies, molecular and biochemical tools are used to study the biosynthesis of specialized plant metabolites.