Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg

Creating knowledge since 1502

How the University saves energy

The German government's Ordinance on Securing the Energy Supply through Short-term Measures (EnSikuMaV) has been in force since 1 September 2022. The savings measures derived from this for the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg are summarised on a special page. [ mehr ... ]

The War in Ukraine: The Latest Information from MLU

Information on support services can be found on the International Office website:

Coronavirus pandemic: Current information from the MLU

The university offers information for MLU members on the following webpages: There you will find, among other things:

Developmental genetics: How germ cells cut the cord from their parents

For the first cell to develop into an entire organism, genes, RNA molecules and proteins have to work together in a complex way. At first, this process is indirectly controlled by the mother. At a certain point in time, the protein GRIF-1 ensures that the offspring cut themselves off from this influence and start their own course of development. A research team from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) details how this process works in the journal "Science Advances".

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Why steamed hay can lead to protein deficiency in horses

Hay treated with hot steam is safer for horses but provides them with less protein. The horse forage is treated with steam to rid it of potentially harmful microorganisms and to bind particles that could otherwise be inhaled. However, a team of scientists from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) has discovered that this also causes a chemical reaction which damages the proteins in the hay and makes them harder for horses to digest. This can lead to signs of nutrient deficiency in the animals and, for example, impair growth or muscle development. The team reports on their scientific work in the journal "Animals".

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From cell walls to photosynthesis: How does manganese get to where it needs to go in plants?

The protein BICAT3 is one of the most important manganese distributors in plants. If defective, this can have devastating effects on a plant's growth; its leaves grow significantly smaller and it produces fewer seeds than usual. A team led by Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) has recently uncovered a transport pathway for manganese in plants and the role that BICAT3 plays in this process. The results could lay the groundwork for improved crop growth. The study was published in the journal "Plant Physiology".

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Protecting and connecting nature across Europe

How can a Europe-wide nature network be created that is coherent, resilient and widely connected? This is the subject of the new European project "NaturaConnect", funded under Horizon Europe. Within the project, 23 international partners from research and environmental organisations are working together under the leadership of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) and the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU).

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The importance of light for grassland plant diversity

Plants need light to grow. However, due to excess nutrients and/or the absence of herbivores less light can reach lower vegetation layers in grasslands. Consequently, few fast-growing species dominate and plant diversity declines. So far, this relationship has been established indirectly through experiments, but never directly by means of experimentally adding light in the field. Now, an international team of researchers including scientists from the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig, was able to experimentally prove the dominant role of light competition for the first time. The results have been published in Nature.

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Habitat mapping data can fill gaps in knowledge on biodiversity

Data gathered by habitat mapping programs can make important contributions to biodiversity research. They provide insight into changes of the local flora since the 1980s Ė a period that is covered by hardly any other sources of information. A team from the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg and the Hamburg Authorities for the Environment, Climate, Energy and Agriculture has now shown how research can benefit from this historic habitat mapping data using habitat maps of the city and federal state of Hamburg as an example.

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