In terms of research, the Chair is mainly devoted to the study of the structure and operation of complex microbial communities that live in the strictly anaerobic environment of the digestive tract of animals and humans, as well as anaerobic parts of biological treatment plants and, e.g., sediments. We use both traditional and more recent microbiological methods and approaches, generally those based on molecular biological methods. Although we are primarily focused on basic research, this is closely connected with a variety of biotechnological applications. Good knowledge of the dynamics of microbial processes in anaerobic systems in which degradation of polysaccharides takes place is the basis for efficient production of a variety of alternative energy sources (biogas and biofuels), as well as for optimizing the nutrition of herbivorous animals. We have also recently expanded research activities to the field of ecotoxicology, in the context of which we mainly study the effects of nanoparticles and other potentially toxic pollutants on microorganisms.