Dr. Li Deng
Scientist/ Emmy Noether group leader

Phone: 3187-49195
Building/Room: 3525/ 014


Head of the Emmy Noether group Viral Ecology

Research Interest

Function role of viruses in health and environment

Curriculum Vitae

  • 03/2017-present: Helmholtz Young Investigator. Institute of Virology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Germany
  • 03/2017-present: Junior Fellow. Technical University of Munich, Germany
  • 09/2016-present: Emmy Noether Group Leader. Institute of Virology, Institute of Groundwater Ecology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Germany.
  • 09/2015-09/2016: Emmy Noether Research Group Leader, Institute of Groundwater Ecology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Germany.
  • 07/2015-09/2016: Maternity leave
  • 12/2011-08/2015: Senior postdoc at the Institute of Groundwater Ecology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Germany.
  • 4/2012-6/2013: maternity leave
  • 10/2008-10/2011: Postdoc at the Department of Ecology and Evolutional Biology, University of Arizona, USA.
  • 10/2012-8/2011: Visiting Scientist at the Institute of Limnology, University of Innsbruck, Austria.
  • 10/2004-10/2008: Ph.D. in Microbiology at the University of Bristol, U.K.
    Thesis: Evidence for cyanophage active against bloom-forming freshwater cyanobacteria.
  • 10/2003-10/2004: M.Sc. in Environmental Sciences, University of Nottingham, U.K.
  • 8/1998-1/2003: B.Sc. in Biological Sciences and B.Eng. in Environmental Engineering at the Tsinghua University, China.


Ten Most Important Publications (from most recent)

Elbehery AHA, Feichtmayer J, Singh D, Griebler C & Deng L*. The Human Virome Protein Cluster Database (HVPC): A Human Viral Metagenomic Database for Diversity and Function Annotation. (2018). Frontiers in Microbiology 9, doi:10.3389/fmicb.2018.01110

Hufsky F, Ibrahim B, Beer M, Deng L, Le Mercier P, McMahon D, Palmarini M, Thiel V and Marz M: Virologists - heroes need weapons. (2018). Plos Pathogenes, 14(2): e1006771.

Feichtmayer J, Deng L & Griebler, C. (2017). Antagonistic Microbial Interactions: Contributions and Potential Applications for Controlling Pathogens in the Aquatic Systems. Frontiers in Microbiology 8, doi:10.3389/fmicb.2017.02192

Kurmayer R, Blom JF*, Deng L*, Pernthaler J. (2015) Phylogeny, ecological adaptation and geographic distance determine toxic or bioactive oligopeptid composition in bloom-forming cyanobacteria, ISME 9, 909-921.

Deng L*, Ignacio-Espinoza JS*, Gregory A, Poulos PT, Weitz JS, Hugenholtz P, Sullivan MB. (2014) Viral-tagged metagenomics reveals environmental cyanophage populations are discretely clustered, Nature 513, 242-245.
(News: Dyeing to Learn More About Marine Viruses; Tiniest Catch: UA Scientists' Fishing Expedition Reveals Viral Diversity in the Sea:; and in German:

Deng L*, Krauss S*, Feichtmayer J, Hofmann R, Arndt H and Griebler C. (2014) Grazing of heterotrophic flagellates on viruses is driven by feeding behaviour. Environmental Microbiology Reports 6, 325-330.

Hurwitz B, Deng L, Poulos BP, Sullivan MB. (2013) Evaluation of methods to concentrate and purify ocean virus communities through comparative, replicated metagenomics. Environmental Microbiology 15, 1428-1440.

Deng L, Gregory A, Yilmaz S, Poulos B, Hugenholtz P, Sullivan MB. (2012)  Contrasting life strategies of viruses that infect photo- and hetero- trophic bacteria revealed by viral-tagging. mBio 3, e00373-12. doi:10.1128/mBio.00373-12. (Recommended by Faculty 1000, 2013)

Duhaime MB, Deng L, Poulos BT, Sullivan MB. (2012) Towards quantitative metagenomics of wild viruses and other ultra-low concentration DNA samples: a rigorous assessment and optimization of the linker amplification method. Environmental Microbiology 14, 2526-37. 

John SG, Mendez CB, Deng L, Poulos B, Kauffman AK, Kern SE, Brum J, Polz MF, Boyle EA, Sullivan MB. (2011)  A simple and efficient method for concentration of ocean viruses by chemical flocculation. Environmental Microbiology Reports 3, 195-202.

*authors contributed equally

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