Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg

Creating knowledge since 1502

Coronavirus pandemic: Current information from the MLU

The university offers information for MLU members on the following webpages: www.uni-halle.de/coronavirus. There you will find, among other things:

Climate change drives plants to extinction in the Black Forest in Germany, study finds

Climate change is leaving its mark on the bog complexes of the German Black Forest. Due to rising temperatures and longer dry periods, two plant species have already gone extinct over the last 40 years. The populations of many others have decreased by one third. In the next couple of decades ten more species could become extinct, researchers from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) write in "Diversity and Distributions".

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We need a safety net for biodiversity

A "safety net" made up of multiple interlinked and ambitious goals is needed to tackle nature's alarming decline. No single goal can capture the broad range of characteristics that need to be sustained, concludes a large international team with the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB). The study, published in the journal Science, outlines the scientific basis for redesigning the new set of biodiversity goals.

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Rapeseed instead of soy burgers: researchers identify a new source of protein for humans

Rapeseed has the potential to replace soy as the best plant-based source of protein for humans. In a current study nutrition scientists at the Martin Luther University found that rapeseed protein consumption has comparable beneficial effects on human metabolism as soy protein. The glucose metabolism and satiety were even better. Another advantage: The proteins can be obtained from the by-products of rapeseed oil production. The study was published in the journal "Nutrients".

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‘Cool’ sampling sites more likely to show false trends in biodiversity change

Data collected by citizen science initiatives, museums and national parks is an important basis for research on biodiversity change. However, scientists from the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), Leipzig University (UL) and Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) found that sampling sites are oftentimes not representative, which may lead to false conclusions about how biodiversity changes. Their research, published in "Conservation Biology", calls for more objective site selection and better training for citizen scientists to prevent a site-selection bias.

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Researchers find new way to protect plants from fungal infection

Widespread fungal disease in plants can be controlled with a commercially available chemical that has been primarily used in medicine until now. This discovery was made by scientists from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the University of the State of Paraná in Brazil. In a comprehensive experiment the team has uncovered a new metabolic pathway that can be disrupted with this chemical, thus preventing many known plant fungi from invading the host plant. The team reported on their study in the scientific journal "Phytopathology".

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Europe’s primary forests: What to protect? What to restore?

An expansion of the protected areas by only about one percent would sufficiently protect most remaining primary forests in Europe. This is one of the main results of a study conducted by an international team led by researchers from the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (HU). The study, published in "Diversity and Distribution", is the first assessment of the conservation status of Europe's primary forests. It identifies protection gaps and areas with restoration needs to reach conservation targets. In addition, it provides valuable information how to implement the new EU Biodiversity Strategy.

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Our commitment to refugees

Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg supports refugees eager to study by providing the following counselling services and measures.

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