Environmental and Evolutionary Microbiology Group @eem_lab
Prof. Jan Roelof van der Meer
Department of Fundamental Microbiology / University of Lausanne
Environmental and Evolutionary Microbiology

My primary interest is the environment, the quality of our living resources and the ways that bacteria can help to manage and degrade human wastes and restore environmental health. Consequently, I am very interested in genetic adaptation processes in bacteria, the mechanisms by which they deal with toxic substances, how they react to pollution in general and how we can apply microbial processes in a useful way (like bacterial bioreporters, bioremediation, microbiome engineering).

October 01 2021

Two new PhD positions are available in the lab to work on the influence of environmental cues on horizontal gene transfer rates. For this we will use the ICEclc model in Pseudomonas, using combinations of single cell transcriptomics, genomics, gene reporters and time-lapse microscopy. Contact me for more information or apply here. Deadline for applications: Nov 1, 2021. Earliest start: Feb 2022.

September 16 2021

Sébastian Burz just started his new postdoc in our group, working on microdroplet and microbead cultivation systems to study community interactions. We are very happy to have you here!

September 16 2021

What is the environmental fate of antibiotics?

A new study by Birge and Caroline, in collaboration with Kathrin Fenner from the Eawag showed the inhibitory effects that low concentrations of antibiotics have on reproduction and composition of freshwater and activated sludge communities.

They also provided evidence that some microbes may be using at least some of the antibiotics as growth substrates, which is still a very much debated issue. To arrive at their conclusions, they used supervised learning of community changes from multiparametric flow cytometry data.

August 22 2021

Good-bye to Roxane, who started a new job and career at the HEP as a science instructor and teacher. We will miss you dearly, Roxane! Good luck in your new profession and hope to see you soon.

August 22 2021

Sorry to see all these internship people leave again! Thanks a lot, Elvire, for the amazing time-lapses of growing microcolonies and help to Tania; Klara, for starting superinteresting experiments figuring out cooperative and competitive genes from transposon mutants; Margaux and Laura, for continuing a bit of Gaitan's work, and Iris, for making mutants in the ICE system!  All the best for your future science careers and hope to see you again!

See more

Jan Roelof van der Meer

Group leader

Vladimir Sentchilo

Senior scientist

Nicolas Carraro

Senior Scientist

Andrea Daveri

PhD student

Roxane Moritz

PhD Student

Xavier Richard

shared PhD student with Christian Mazza

Senka Causevic

PhD student

Maxime Batsch

PhD Student

Gaïtan Géhin

PhD student shared with Jasqueline Peña

Isaline Guex

PhD student shared with Christian Mazza

Tania Miguel Trabajo

PhD student

Helena Todorov


Valentina Benigno

Master student

Sébastian Burz

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Jan Roelof van der Meer

See Jan van der Meer live at the 'Night of the Microbes' of the ISME meeting 2018. Lecture: Jan van der Meer's video talk called

Synthetic Biology: Principles and Applications is available on at


Latest publications

Subcellular Localization Defects Characterize Ribose-Binding Mutant Proteins with New Ligand Properties in Escherichia coli.

Tavares D, van der Meer JR.

Appl Environ Microbiol. 2022 Jan 25. 10.1128/AEM.02117-21

Predicting spatial patterns of soil bacteria under current and future environmental conditions.

Mod HK, Buri A, Yashiro E, Guex N, Malard L, Pinto-Figueroa E, Pagni M, Niculita-Hirzel H, van der Meer JR, Guisan A.

ISME J. 2021 Sep. 10.1038/s41396-021-00947-5

A Miniaturized Microbe-Silicon-Chip Based on Bioluminescent Engineered Escherichia coli for the Evaluation of Water Quality and Safety.

Sciuto EL, Corso D, Libertino S, van der Meer JR, Faro G, Coniglio MA.

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 Jul 16. 10.3390/ijerph18147580

Genome-wide gene expression changes of Pseudomonas veronii 1YdBTEX2 during bioaugmentation in polluted soils.

Morales M, Sentchilo V, Hadadi N, van der Meer JR.

Environ Microbiome. 2021 Apr 29. 10.1186/s40793-021-00378-x


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  janroelof.vandermeer (at]