Recognizing Plant Cell authors: Olga Blifernez-Klassen

Olga Blifernez-Klassen, first author of A gene regulatory network for antenna size control in carbon dioxide-deprived Chlamydomonas cells

Current Position: Postdoctoral Research Associate at Algae Biotechnology and Bioenergy Research Group at Bielefeld University, Faculty of Biology, Center for Biotechnology (CeBiTec), Bielefeld, Germany

Education: PhD (2012) in Biology/Algae Biotechnology and Bioenergy, Diploma (2007) Molecular Biotechnology at Bielefeld University

Non-scientific Interests: reading, travelling, history

Brief bio: In 2007, after finishing my diploma in Molecular Biotechnology at the University of Bielefeld, I joined the lab of Algae Biotechnology and Bioenergy of Prof. Dr. Olaf Kruse for my PhD. Here, I met the fascinating green microalga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and worked during my PhD on the topic “Molecular mechanisms behind the adjustment of phototrophic light-harvesting and mixotrophic utilization of cellulosic carbon sources in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.” In the following years and various projects of my postdoctoral research, I was able to expand my knowledge on microalgae enormously. I have worked on different topics such as photosynthesis, translation control and photosynthetic acclimation processes, isolation and cultivation of different microalgal species, Meta-‘Omics analyses (including the research on eukaryote-bacteria interactions of the Botryococcus braunii phycosphere). In addition, I have been involved in many projects on microalgal biomass and biofuel production (e.g. (bio)methane/biogas, hydrocarbons and (exo)-polysaccharides).

These multifaceted explorations of microalgae have always kept me on my toes and have shown me how diverse, inexhaustible and impressive the “universe” of microalgae is.