Prof. Dr. Merle Tränkner

Since June 2017, Prof. Dr. Merle Tränkner is Junior Professor at IAPN and the Faculty for Agricultural Sciences at Georg-August-University Göttingen. Merle Tränkner was a Ph.D. student at IAPN from October 2012 to December 2016.


During her Ph.D. studies, her work focused on the role of essential plant nutrients on drought tolerance of crop plants. With these studies she contributed basic research aiming at improved plant growth under drought conditions through optimized nutrient management. In the scope of her studies, Prof. Dr. Merle Tränkner investigated the role of nitrogen, magnesium and potassium in the water use efficiency of wheat and barley.

Furthermore, her project aimed at forwarding a multi-sensing approach, which allowed assessing drought stress and nutrient deficiency in plants by means of thermography, chlorophyll fluorescence, gas exchange measurements and 13C stable isotope analysis.

Based on results of the background research on water-use efficiency that is already established at IAPN, Dr. Merle Tränkner strives to analyse the impact of different nutrients on water-use efficiency in more detail. “A steadily growing world population and the raising concern of resource scarcity demands for a sustainable and resource saving, yet sufficient plant and food production. The efficient use of water and plant nutrients is of central importance for optimal plant growth, and represents a fascinating challenge for research.” says Prof. Dr. Merle Tränkner. The detection of abiotic stresses and the concomitant stress physiology, and the photosynthetic efficiency and capacity impacted by magnesium will be further core topics.

Mrs. Tränkner finished her Bachelor degree in Agricultural Sciences in 2010 at the University of Göttingen and graduated from the University of Göttingen with her Masters in the program “Sustainable International Agriculture”.



PhD research project of Prof. Dr. Merle Tränkner