Saskia Bindschedler


Adjunct professor

Office A215

Tel: +41 32 718 22 52



Research interests


Overall, I am interested in the interaction between biological and mineral compartments within ecosystems. Focusing on soil environments as models of mineral-biological interfaces, I am trying to understand how interactions between microbes impact biogeochemical cycles at various scales. In particular, I chose to concentrate on fungi and bacteria, as both types of organisms present a myriad of great adaptations to their environment. In my current research, I look at fungi-bacteria interactions in two different systems: urban mining and the oxalate-carbonate pathway (OCP). 1) Metals are non-renewable resources that microorganisms are able to both mobilize and immobilize under different forms. These capabilities can be harnessed in order to modify the (bio)availability of selected metals for applied research projects (e.g. bioremediation, biorecovery). 2) The OCP is a process described from tropical soils and known to be relevant in biogeochemical cycles of both carbon and calcium. Its main biological players are plants, fungi and bacteria. Therefore, the OCP is an ideal model system to study microbial interactions and their effects on biogeochemical cycles, while working at several ecosystem scales.


Academic curriculum 


  • Since August 2014 : Junior lecturer in (Geo)mycology

Teaching : Mycology for Bachelor students and several lectures in the Master of Biogeosciences. Research areas : Role of fungi in soil functioning, ecosystem services of bacterial-fungal interactions, microorganisms and metals/minerals.


  • October 2013 – July 2014 : SNF Post-doctoral fellow (Advanced Postdoc.Mobility)

Laboratory of Microbiology, University of Neuchâtel & Geobiology group, IMPMC, UPMC, Paris.

Research area : Importance of fungal highways in soil functioning: the oxalate-carbonate pathway as a model system of microbial interactions.


  • March 2012 – August 2013 : SNF Post-doctoral fellow (fellowship for prospective researchers)

Bioavailability group, Department of Environmental Microbiology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Leipzig.

Research area : Influence of fungal highways on the efficiency of the “oxalate-carbonate pathway” in unsaturated environments.


  • May 2011 – February 2012 : Post-doctoral assistant

Laboratory of Microbiology, University of Neuchâtel.

Participation in lectures and tutorials of the laboratory.

Research area : Ecological aspects of bacteria dispersion by fungal hyphae in soils.


  • November 2006 - April 2011 : PhD Thesis in Environmental Sciences

Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, University of Lausanne.

Participation to field and laboratory tutorials of the institute, assistant at the library of Earth Sciences.

Thesis title : « The role of Fungi in the precipitation of calcite. Relationships between fungal filaments, nanofibres and needle fibre calcite ». Funded by the SNSF.


  • 2005-2006 : Master of Science in Biogeosciences

University of Neuchâtel

Thesis title : « Characterization and functionalities of fungal and bacterial communitites in organic soils developped on a cold scree slope ecosystem. Creux du Van/NE », Laboratory of Microbiology and Laboratory of Soil and Vegetation (Unine).


  • 2001-2005 : Bachelor of Science Pluridisciplinary in Nature Sciences

University of Neuchâtel



Science outreach

RTS avis d' experts




  • Bindschedler S, Bouquet Vu T, Job D, Joseph E, Junier P. 2017. Fungal biorecovery of gold from e-waste. In: Sariaslani S, Gadd GM (eds), Advances in Applied Microbiology 99, p. 53-81.


  • Filippidou S, Bindschedler S, Jeanneret N, Junier P. 2017. Bacterial diversity in the sulfur and iron springs at Ponts-de-Martel, Neuchâtel. Bulletin de la Société Neuchâteloise des Sciences Naturelles 136, 37-49.


  • Comensoli L, Bindschedler S, Junier P, Joseph E. 2017. Iron and fungal physiology: A review of biotechnological opportunities. In: Sariaslani S, Gadd GM (eds), Advances in Applied Microbiology 98, p. 31-60.


  • Joseph E, Bindschedler S, Albini M, Comensoli L, Kooli W, Mathys L. 2017. Microorganisms for safeguarding cultural heritage. In: Dighton J, White JF (eds), The fungal community: its organization and role in the ecosystem, 4th edition, CRC Press, Boca Raton FL, p. 509-517.


  • Bindschedler S, Cailleau G, Verrecchia E. 2016. Role of Fungi in the Biomineralization of Calcite. Minerals 6 (2): 41.


  • Hervé V, Junier T, Bindschedler S, Verrecchia E, Junier P. 2016. Diversity and ecology of oxalotrophic bacteria. World Journal of Microbiology & Biotechnology 32 (2): 28.


  • Simon A, Bindschedler S, Job D, Wick LY, Filippidou S, Kooli WM, Verrecchia EP, Junier P. 2015. Exploiting the fungal highway: development of a novel tool for the in situ isolation of bacteria migrating along fungal mycelium. FEMS Microbiology Ecology 91 (11): fiv116.


  • Hasinger O, Spangenberg JE, Millière L, Bindschedler S, Cailleau G, Verrecchia EP. 2015. Carbon dioxide in scree slope deposits: A pathway from atmosphere to pedogenic carbonate. Geoderma 247-248: 129-139.


  • Bindschedler S, Braissant O, Cailleau G, Millière L, Job D, Verrecchia EP. 2014. Unravelling the enigmatic origin of calcitic nanofibres in soils and caves: purely physicochemical or biogenic processes? Biogeosciences 11: 2809-2825.


  • Cailleau G, Mota M, Bindschedler S, Junier P, Verrecchia EP. 2013. Detection of active oxalate-carbonate pathway ecosystems in the Amazon Basin: global implications of such natural potential C sink. Catena 116: 132-141.


  • Bravo D, Cailleau G, Bindschedler S, Simon A, Job D, Verrecchia EP, Junier P. 2013. Isolation of oxalotrophic bacteria able to disperse on fungal mycelium. FEMS Microbiology Letters 348: 157-166.


  • Pion M, Spangenberg JE, Simon A, Bindschedler S, Job D, Junier P. 2013. Bacterial farming by the fungus Morchella crassipes. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 280 (1773).


  • Pion M, Bshary R, Bindschedler S, Filippidou S, Wick LY, Job D, Junier P. 2013. Gains of bacterial flagellar motility in a fungal world. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 79 (22): 6862-6867.


  • Braissant O, Bindschedler S, Daniels AU, Verrecchia EP, Cailleau G. 2012. Microbiological activities in moonmilk monitored using isothermal microcalorimetry (Cave of «Vers chez le Brandt», Neuchâtel, Switzerland). Journal of Cave and Karst Studies 74 (1): 116-126.


  • Bindschedler S, Millière L, Cailleau G, Job D, Verrecchia EP. 2012. An ultrastructural approach to analogies between fungal structures and needle fibre calcite. Geomicrobiology Journal 29 (4): 301-313.


  • Millière L, Spangenberg J, Bindschedler S, Cailleau G, Verrecchia EP. 2011. Reliability of stable carbon and oxygen isotope composition of pedogenic needle fibre calcite as environmental indicators: examples from Western Europe. Isotopes in Environmental & Health Studies 47 (3): 341-358.


  • Millière L, Hasinger O, Bindschedler S, Cailleau G, Spangenberg JE, Verrecchia EP. 2011. Stable carbon and oxygen isotopic signatures of pedogenic needle fibre calcite. Geoderma 161, 74-87.


  • Bindschedler S, Millière L, Cailleau G, Job D, Verrecchia EP. 2010. Calcitic nanofibres in soils and caves: a putative fungal contribution to carbonatogenesis. Tufas and Speleothems: Unravelling the Microbial and Physical Controls. Geological Society, London, Special Publications 336, 225-238.


Published conference Abstracts


  • Braissant O, Bindschedler S, Cailleau G, Aubrecht R, Kovacic L, Lee N. 2010. Isothermal microcalorimetry a novel tool for non-disruptive analysis of microbial heat production in subsurface ecosystems. Origins of life and evolution of biospheres 40, 561-562.


  • Bindschedler S, Millière L, Cailleau G, Job D, Verrecchia EP. 2009. Fungal implication in secondary calcium carbonate accumulation in soils and caves. Geochimica Cosmochimica Acta 73(13), A123.


  • Millière L, Hasinger O, Bindschedler S, Cailleau G, Spangenberg J, Verrecchia EP. 2009. Tracing soil carbon cycle and the origin of needle fibre calcite. Geochimica Cosmochimica Acta 73(13), A882.