Kari Steffen

Kari Steffen

Senior research scientist


Research activity per year

Personal profile

Curriculum vitae


Senior research scientist

Phone (work): no current number

E-mail: [email protected]

Internet Homepage: http://www.DrSteffen.com


Previous professional appointments, work experience

current           Nanoform Finland Ltd.

2016-2017      Senior researcher at Department of Environmental Sciences, (UHel)

2014-2016      Coordinator of the Doctoral Program in Microbiology and Biotechnology

2008-2015      University Lecturer (yliopistonlehtori) in Microbiology

2008-2013       PI appointed by the Univ. of Helsinki for the project
                      “Microbial degradation of archaeological wood”

2005-2007       Junior research scientist appointed by the Academy of Finland;
                      litter decomposition by different fungal groups

2005               Post Doc at the:
                        - Institute of Microbiology, Academy of Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic;
                        cellulolytic enzymes of litter decomposing fungi
                        - International Graduate School, Zittau, Germany;
                        novel peroxidases from wood and litter degrading fungi

                        - Centro de Investigaciones Biologicas, CSIC, Madrid, Spain
                        aryl alcohol oxidases in litter-decomposing fungi

1995-2004       Department of Applied Chemistry and Microbiology, University of Helsinki;

                      research scientist and assisting teacher mainly of laboratory courses on    
                      numerous occasions in applied microbiology and environmental

1996                Federal Research Center of Agriculture, Braunschweig, Germany;
                        soil bioremediation

1995                Primalco Biotech, Finland; scale-up production of cellulolytic enzymes

1993                Department of Microbiology, Technical University of Braunschweig;
                       Germany; anaerobic bacteria in waste water treatment


Education and academic career

1990                Graduated (Abitur) from the Humboldt Gymnasium, Gifhorn, Germany

1990-1991        Military service in Vekaranjärvi, Finland

1998                     M.Sc. (Microbiology), Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, University of Helsinki

1999-2003        Ph.D. student in the Graduate School of Environmental Science and Technology

2003                    Ph.D. (Microbiology and Environmental Biotechnology), "Degradation of recalcitrant biopolymers and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons by litter-decomposing basidiomycetous fungi",
Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, University of Helsinki

2005                Post Doc year in the EU (Czech Republic, Germany, and Spain)

2008               Project leader and university lecturer

17.3.2010        Docent in Microbiology, University of Helsinki

3/2014            Coordinator of MBDP


Academic awards and honors

-First prize for the best doctoral thesis published in series “Dissertationes Biocentri Viikki Universitatis Helsingiensis” 2004.

-Winner of the best mycological photo (#28) during the 8th International Mycological Conference in Cairns, Australia 2006.


Major research funding as principal investigator

2008-2013       "Microbial degradation of archaeological wood"
University of Helsinki Foundation and Wihuri Foundation

2009-2010       "Quantifying microbial degradation in archaeological waterlogged wood with ultrasound" Finnish Cultural Foundation

2005-2007       "Comparative evaluation of degradative activities in litter-decomposing and facultative mycorrhiza-forming fungi" The Academy of Finland

1999-2003       "Degradation of recalcitrant biopolymers and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons by   litter-decomposing basidiomycetous fungi"
Academy of Finland graduate school funding (EnSTe)

1996                Ekokem master thesis grand


Major research funding as part of a consortium projects

2016-2017          “Soil bioremediation using abattoir waste (REMSOIL)” Tekes

2014-2017       "Space for Science", ERASMUS+ EU-project

2009-2011       "Bioremediation of contaminated soil with fungi (PIMA-FUN)"

2006-2010       "Making in situ bioremediation the primary choice (BIOKUNTO)"

2007-2009       "Removal of endocrine disruptors from waste waters using fungal oxidative enzymes" Maj & Tor Nessling Foundation

2007-2009       "Fungal reduction of organic matter in contaminated soil (OMPAS)"

2001-2009       "Consortium: Soil biology: Remediation, Fertilization, and Control of Plant Disease" Helsinki University Environmental Research Centre (HERC)

2005-2007       "Bioremediation of contaminated soils" Maj & Tor Nessling Foundation and
                          the Academy of Finland

2002-2007       Microbial Resources Center of Excellence in Research, Academy of Finland

2004-2005       "Fungal bioremediation of wood and soil contaminated by polychlorinated phenols, dioxins and furans in old saw mill areas" Maj & Tor Nessling Foundation, Ekokem

2001-2004       "Bioconversion of recalcitrant soil organic matter by litter-decomposing
                          basidiomycetous fungi" The Academy of Finland

1999-2002       "Biodiversity and humus: Direct effects of clear-cutting on microbial and micro-faunal biodiversity of pine rhizosphere and humus soil" Finnish Biodiversity Research Programme FIBRE


Fields of Science

  • 219 Environmental biotechnology
  • 118 Biological sciences

International and National Collaboration

Publications and projects within past five years.