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Anna Schnürer

Anna Schnürer
I am professor in microbial biotechnology at the Department of Molecular Sciences. My research is devoted to generate basic understanding on anaerobic microbial processes and to use this knowledge for different biotechnological applications.


I am driven by a strong interest to contribute to the development of a more sustainable society as well as a curiosity about microorganisms and their metabolic potential. My academic career started with studies in chemistry at Linköping University followed by a master in biotechnology at Uppsala University.

My path as a researcher started with a dissertation (1996) at SLU in the field of biogas Here I gained insight into the biogas process and all its benefits and possibilities and also knowledge on the difficult art of cultivating strict anaerobic organisms. The opportunity to combine applied and basic research attracted me to a research career. During the period 2011-2020 I was appointed professor and collaboration specialist in bioenergy at SLU. These assignments gave the opportunity to build a large network for collaboration but also to expand and deepen my skills in anaerobic microbiology.
Today I am professor in microbial biotechnology and lead a research group of approximately 10 people and work with researchers both at Swedish and international universities as well as with different actors outside the university, such as municipalities, branch organizations and farmers.

Anna Schnürer's full CV.


I am currently teaching on the following courses at undergraduate level:

• Energy systems from a biogeoscience perspective, SLU
• Contaminated soils - Risk Assessment and Remediation, SLU
• On-site wastewater systems, nutrient recovery and sewage sludge treatment, SLU
• Waste management, SLU
• Biogas in the sustainable society, SLU
• The biogas process, LiU
• Environmental Bioprocess Technology, KTH

I am also perform continuing education for municipality, industry and farmers in the field of biogas.


My overall research interest is environmental biotechnology and the possibility to use anaerobic microbial processes for converting organic residual streams into valuable products, such as energy carriers, chemicals or feed. To achieve this goal, my laboratory operates different types of anaerobic bioprocesses, with mixed organism consortia or pure organism cultures. Isolation and characterization of new organisms, both bacteria and archaea, is also in focus. Many studies aim at generating basic knowledge to understand connections between microbial ecology and process function, but part of the research also has a more applied character and is often performed in collaboration with the industry.

A strong research area is biogas production from different types of substrates. The research here aims to find solutions for optimized gas production with higher yield and improved process stability. Another research area is the digestate and various issues related to it´s use as fertilizers. Possibilities to link the biogas systems to other energy production systems (hydrogen, ethanol, etc.) or for production of other value products, such as organic acids, or feed, are also area of interest. The main part of my research is accomplished at SLU but some work is also performed at Linköping University where I previously where employed as guest professor (2015-2020) and now continuously is engaged through the competence center in biogas (BRC)  

The microbial processes used for the production of different products in constructed bioreactors are also found in different natural environments. My knowledge in the field of anaerobic microbiology has therefore led to collaborative research dealing with, for example, methane emissions from cows and rice fields, linkage between human health and intestinal flora and deep biosphere methane

A more detailed description of my research and research group "Anaerobic Microbial Biotechnology" is available here. Information about me and my reseach team can also be found via twitter, @_ABM and @schnureranna, and at the biogas blogg


I have a broad network within the biogas area both inside and outside Sweden and interact with different universities, research institues, industries and branch organizations. I am also active lecturer at various courses and seminars and act as advisor on various issues related to biogas production.

Selected publications

1. Nordell E, Moestedt J, Österman J, Shakeri Yekta S, Björn A, Sun L, Schnürer A (2020). Post treatment of dewatered digested sewage sludge by termophilic high-solid digestion for efficient sanitization with positive energy output. Waste Management 119: 11-21
2. Ohlsson J, Rönnberg-Wästljung AC, Nordh NE, Schnürer A (2020). Co-Digestion of Salix and Manure for Biogas: Importance of Clone Choice, Coppicing Frequency and Reactor Setup. 13(5):3804. doi: 10.3390/en13153804
3. Sun H, Bjerkertorp J, Levenfors JJ, Schnürer A (2020). Isolation of Antibiotic-resistant Bacteria in Biogas Digestate and their Susceptibility to Antibiotics. Journal of Environmental Pollution: 266, 115265. doi:10.1016/j.envpol.2020.115265
4. Moestedt J, Müller B, Nagavara Najaraj Y and Schnürer A (2020). Acetate and Lactate Production During Two-Stage Anaerobic Digestion of Food Waste Driven by Lactobacillus and Aeriscardovia. Front. Energy Res.
5. Westerholm M, Liu T and Schnürer A (2020). Comparative study of industrial-scale high-solid biogas production from food waste: Process operation and microbiology. BITE.
6. Moestedt J, Westerholm M, Isaksson S, Schnürer A (2020). Inoculum source determines acetate and lactate production during anaerobic digestion of sewage sludge and food waste. MDPI Bioengineering 7: 3-19. doi:10.3390/bioengineering7010003
7. Singh A, Müller B, Füxelius, H-H. Schnürer A. (2019). AcetoBase: A functional gene repository and database for formyltetrahydrofolate synthetase (FTHFS) sequences. Database. 1-14. doi:10.1093/database/baz142.
8. Shakeri Yekta S, Liu T, Axelsson M, Safaric L, Karlsson A, Björn A, Schnürer A. (2019). Sulfide levels in municipal sludge digesters affects microbial community response to long-chain fatty acid loads. Biotechnology for Biofuels. 12: 259.
9. Westerholm M, Castillo M.d.P., Chan Andersson A, Nilsen P Jahre, Schnürer A (2019) Effects of thermal hydrolytic pre-treatment on biogas process efficiency and microbial community structure in industrial- and laboratory-scale digesters. Waste management 95:150-160.
10. Westerholm M, Dolfing J, Schnürer A (2019). Growth Characteristics and Thermodynamics of Syntrophic Acetate Oxidizers. Environmental Sciences and Technology. 53(9). 5512-5520. doi: 10.1021/acs.est.9b00288.

A full publication list can be found here.


Professor at the Department of Molecular Sciences; Mikrobiell bioteknologi
Telephone: +4618673288
Postal address:
Institutionen för molekylära vetenskaper
Box 7015
750 07 Uppsala
Visiting address: Almas Allé 5, BioCentrum, Ultuna, Uppsala
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