Professorship for Sustainable Chemistry and Material Resources

Organisational unit: Section

Organisation profile


Chair for Sustainable Chemistry and Material Resources

We research and train in the field of sustainable chemistry and pharmacy.

We focus on environmental questions as well as on sustainable questions going beyond that such as social and ecological aspects in the context of the life cycle of chemical substances and products. This includes the extraction of raw material, its use as well as the fate after its use. We are also interested in the material flow associated with the extraction and use of the raw material. On top of the experimental work and modeling, we also develop concepts as for example Benign by Design intended dissipation.

Our research and teaching is carried out on an intra- and transdisciplinary scale within the Faculty of Sustainability together with national and international co-operations.



We are interested in environmental affairs and all questions concerning the sustainability within the context of the life cycle of chemicals, starting with the raw material itself and going on to the synthesis, the use to end up with the environmental fate of chemical substances and products after their use. Beyond the chemical substances and products themselves, we are also interested in the associated material flows, especially when it comes to the so-called strategic resources (e. g. phosphate, seldom metals).

We investigate the fate (e. g. identification of relevant sources) in the environment as well as the spread and the behavior of chemicals (e. g. spread, biological and photochemical degradation) in the aquatic environment in the sense of a sustainable water management. This is why we want to record their effects (e. g. genotoxicity, mutagenity, and bacteria toxicity).At present we are focusing on pesticides, pharmaceuticals, textile auxiliary agents and nanoparticles.

Service offers

Examination of (bio)-degradability of chemicals and pharmaceuticals  
according to OECD/DIN/ISO and others:
Closed Bottle-Test (OECD 301 D)
•    Manometric Respirometry (OECD 301 F)
•    Zahn-Wellens-Test (OECD 302 B)
•    Waste water treatment plant simulation (OECD 303 A)
•    Water Sediment Test
•    Photochemical degradation
•    Photocatalytic degradation
•    Electro coalugation
•    and other
Acute and chronic toxicity in bacteria:
•    Luminescent bacteria test with Vibrio fischeri (30 minutes and 20h)
•    Growth-inhibition test with Pseudomonas putida (16h) and Vibrio fischeri (20h)
•    Growth-inhibition test with Enteroccus faecalis      

•    Ames-Test with Salmonella typhimurium TA 98/TA 100
•    Umu-Test with Salmonella typhimurium TA 1535/ psK 1002
•    Mikronucleus-Test with CHO-Cells by FACS-Analysis
•    Green Screen-Assay with TK6-cells

Chemical informatics
Structure property relationships
•    Calculation of physicochemical properties of molecules
•    Calculation of quantum chemical parameters of molecules
•    Calculation of toxicity and mutagenicity
•    Calculation of the biological degradation
•    Calculation of metabolites (mammalia bacteria)
•    Targeted design of chemicals and pharmaceuticals
•    Support in purchasing decisions
•    Product optimization
•    REACH
Water flux based reactive mass transport modelling and assessment
•    Spatio-temporal analysis of discharge and water quality (R-Statistics, SigmaPlot, ArcGIS)
•    Assessment of water quality by combined water quality and quantity indices (WQI, WQQI, WAI)
•    Water quality modelling in lakes and reservoirs in 1D, 2D and 3D (LAC, MOHID Water, Ce-qual)
•    Catchment modelling of hydrology, erosion and sedimenttransport, phosphorus discharge, pesticides and transformation product discharge (ZIN-Sed, MOHID Land, reservoir models)
•    River channel modelling of water, sediment, phosphorus, pesticide and transformation product discharge (ZIN-Sed, MOHID Stream)
•    Scenario modelling and assessment
•    System analysis and management assessment
•    Integrated water ressources management
•    Liquid chromatography coupled to ion trap mass spectrometry
•    HPLC with UV and fluorescence detection
•    Gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry
•    Ion chromatography

  1. 2023
  2. Published

    Modernizing persistence–bioaccumulation–toxicity (PBT) assessment with high throughput animal-free methods

    Escher, B. I., Altenburger, R., Blüher, M., Colbourne, J. K., Ebinghaus, R., Fantke, P., Hein, M., Köck, W., Kümmerer, K., Leipold, S., Li, X., Scheringer, M., Scholz, S., Schloter, M., Schweizer, P. J., Tal, T., Tetko, I., Traidl-Hoffmann, C., Wick, L. Y. & Fenner, K., 01.05.2023, In: Archives of Toxicology. 97, 5, p. 1267-1283 17 p.

    Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesResearchpeer-review

  3. Published

    Are Si-C bonds cleaved by microorganisms? A critical review on biodegradation of methylsiloxanes

    Rücker, C., Grabitz, E. & Kümmerer, K., 01.04.2023, In: Chemosphere. 321, 137858.

    Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesResearchpeer-review

  4. Published

    Identification of environmentally biodegradable scaffolds for the benign design of quinolones and related substances

    Suk, M., Lorenz, S. & Kümmerer, K., 01.04.2023, In: Sustainable Chemistry and Pharmacy. 31, 100947.

    Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesResearchpeer-review

  5. Published

    A kinetic study of the photolysis of sulfamethoxazole with special emphasis on the photoisomer

    Palm, W. U., Schmidt, N., Stahn, M. & Grimme, S., 01.03.2023, In: Photochemical and Photobiological Sciences. 22, 3, p. 615-630 16 p.

    Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesResearchpeer-review

  6. Published
  7. Published

    Towards greener and sustainable ionic liquids using naturally occurring and nature-inspired pyridinium structures

    Suk, M. & Kümmerer, K., 07.01.2023, In: Green Chemistry . 25, 1, p. 365-374 10 p., 25.

    Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesResearchpeer-review

  8. 2022
  9. Published

    Für eine neue Ganzheitlichkeit: Nachhaltige Chemie

    Kümmerer, K. & Große Ophoff, M., 28.12.2022, In: Politische Ökologie. 40, 171, p. 90 - 96 7 p.

    Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesTransfer

  10. Published

    Designing benign molecules: The influence of O-acetylated glucosamine-substituents on the environmental biodegradability of fluoroquinolones

    Lorenz, S., Suaifan, G. & Kümmerer, K., 01.12.2022, In: Chemosphere. 309, Part 2, 136724.

    Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesResearch

  11. Published

    One planet: one health. A call to support the initiative on a global science–policy body on chemicals and waste

    Brack, W., Barcelo Culleres, D., Boxall, A. B. A., Budzinski, H., Castiglioni, S., Covaci, A., Dulio, V., Escher, B. I., Fantke, P., Kandie, F., Fatta-Kassinos, D., Hernández, F. J., Hilscherová, K., Hollender, J., Hollert, H., Jahnke, A., Kasprzyk-Hordern, B., Khan, S. J., Kortenkamp, A., Kümmerer, K., Lalonde, B., Lamoree, M. H., Levi, Y., Lara Martín, P. A., Montagner, C. C., Mougin, C., Msagati, T., Oehlmann, J., Posthuma, L., Reid, M., Reinhard, M., Richardson, S. D., Rostkowski, P., Schymanski, E., Schneider, F., Slobodnik, J., Shibata, Y., Snyder, S. A., Fabriz Sodré, F., Teodorovic, I., Thomas, K. V., Umbuzeiro, G. A., Viet, P. H., Yew-Hoong, K. G., Zhang, X. & Zuccato, E., 01.12.2022, In: Environmental Sciences Europe. 34, 1, 10 p., 21.

    Research output: Journal contributionsComments / Debate / ReportsResearch

  12. Published

    Discharge and fate of biocide residuals to ephemeral stormwater retention pond sediments

    Linke, F., Olsson, O., Schnarr, L., Kümmerer, K., Preusser, F., Bork, M., Leistert, H. & Lange, J., 01.11.2022, In: Hydrology Research. 53, 11, p. 1441-1453 13 p.

    Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesResearchpeer-review

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