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Researcher Profile

PD Dipl.-Ing. Dr. Monika Schmoll PhD

PD Dipl.-Ing. Dr. Monika Schmoll PhD


Senior Scientist


Health & Bioresources

Competence Unit





+43 50550 3525


+43 50550 3666


UFT, Konrad-Lorenz-Straße 24, 3430 Tulln


Field: Exploration of Biological Resources

Main Research: Environmental Signaling for Fungal Biotechnology


Dr. Monika Schmoll received her degree (1999) and Ph. D. (2003) on the topic of “Regulation of cellulase expression and signal transduction in the filamentous fungus Hypocrea jecorina (Trichoderma reesei)” at the Vienna University of Technology. In 2013 she completed her habilitation (venia docendi) in the field of “Molecular Genetics and Genomics”. Besides gaining postdoctoral experience and building her own group at the Vienna University of Technology, she has been a visiting scientist in the laboratory of Professor N. Louise Glass (Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, University of California, Berkeley, USA), the University of Rome La Sapienza and the University of Szeged, Hungary.

She is author of 77 publications (h-factor 31) including several book chapters and reviews as well as (co-)editorship of 4 books. Dr. Schmoll is Senior Scientist and project leader at the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT), Tulln, Austria and leads a work group with four PhD students, two Master students and one technician. The primary research field of Dr. Schmoll is the interconnection between light response, sexual development and cellulase gene expression in Trichoderma reesei. She showed for the first time that cellulase gene expression is modulated by light in T. reesei and could since then elucidate important mechanistic details on the underlying mechanism. Her group discovered the sexual cycle in the biotechnological workhorse Trichoderma, which had previously been considered asexual. This work was published in PNAS in 2009 and since then investigation of this phenomenon and its peculiarities in Trichoderma has become an additional focus. Her work with Trichoderma is complemented by contributions to genome annotation of several fungi (Trichoderma spp., Aspergillus nidulans, Postia placenta, Ceriporiopsis subvermispora, Phlebiopsis gigantea), especially in the field of signal transduction.
Our current research Focus
Our current research efforts are concentrated on elucidation of the signaling network which integrates various signals from the environment (light, nutrients, pheromones) to generate a fine tuned response to the conditions in every instant of an organisms life. Thereby we study the regulatory interplay of light perception by photoreceptors, heterotrimeric G-protein signaling and its regulation, pheromone response (sexual development) and the output pathway of cellulase gene expression. Based on these results we found a connection between carbon and secondary metabolism as well as the relevance of glucose sensing via the G-protein pathway for posttranscriptional regulation of cellulases and chemotropic responses. 
On the one hand we aim to achieve a detailed understanding of the physiology of fungi in general, using Trichoderma reesei (Hypocrea jecorina) as a model system, and on the other hand our research with this versatile biotechnological workhorse will at the same time be beneficial for strain improvement and industrial applications such as biofuel production or heterologous protein expression.
Since we discovered the sexual cycle of Trichoderma reesei, we investigate and optimize this process for efficient use both in the lab and in industrial processes. Thereby we apply the knowledge gained from our studies of signal transduction pathways to elucidate interconnections between nutrient signaling and development.

Fungi are of high importance for our society, for example concerning the increasing number of immunocompromised patients, who are threatened by pathogenic fungi or as producers of peptaiboles, which are discussed as an alternative to classical antibiotics. Moreover, fungi, especially several Trichoderma spp. play an important role in biocontrol of plant pathogens and can thus serve as biological fungicide.
In all these processes, signal transduction proteins are key regulators of their efficiency. Hence a more detailed understanding of signaling in fungi will provide insights into mechanisms of signal transduction not only relevant to cellulase gene expression and biofuel production, but also to elucidate further mechanisms of importance for health and economy.

  • 1999-2003: PhD Student
    Institute of Chemical Engineering, Vienna University of Technology / Austria
  • 2003-2007: Postdoc
    Institute of Chemical Engineering, Vienna University of Technology / Austria
  • 2007-2010: Group leader
    Institute of Chemical Engineering, Vienna University of Technology / Austria
  • 2010-2012: Senior Scientist and Group leader
    Institute of Chemical Engineering, Vienna University of Technology / Austria
  • 2012-2013: Scientist,
    Department Health and Environment, AIT Austrian Institute of Technology / Austria
  • 2013-now: Senior Scientist,
    Department Health and Environment, AIT Austrian Institute of Technology, / Austria
  • 2008-2008: Visiting Scholar
    Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, University of California, Berkeley / USA
  • 2011: Management committee member of COST action FP0602 “Biotechnology for lignocellulose biorefineries”
  • 2006: Member of the local organizing committee for the 8th European Conference on Fungal Genetics (ECFG8), April 8 – 11, Vienna, Austria
  • 2006: Member of the local organizing committee for the First European Neurospora Meeting (Satellite Meeting of the ECFG8), April 8th,Vienna, Austria
  • 2012 -: Member of the Editorial Board of "Applied and Environmental Microbiology"
  • 2012 - : Member of the Editorial Board of "PLoS ONE"
  • 2009 - 2012: Member of the Female Junior Faculty for the "AB Tech" PhD Program at TU Vienna
  • 2014 -: Senior Editor of "Fungal Biology and Biotechnology"
  • 2015 - : Board member of the Austrian Agency for Research Integrity (www.oeawi.at)
  • 2017 -: Vice chair of the Board of the Austrian Association for Research Integrity (www.oeawi.at/en)
  • 2007: APART fellowship of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (ÖAW)
  • 2010: Young group leader presentation ÖGMBT
  • 2013: Science award of the state of Lower Austria


  • Envoy, a PAS/LOV domain protein of Hypocrea jecorina (anamorph Trichoderma reesei), modulates cellulase gene transcription in response to light.
    Author(s): Schmoll, M., Franchi, L., & Kubicek, C. P.
    Journal: Eukaryotic Cell, 4 (2005) ; 1998-2007
  • Sulphur metabolism and cellulase gene expression are connected processes in the filamentous fungus Hypocrea jecorina (anamorph Trichoderma reesei)
    Author(s): Gremel, G., Dorrer, M., & Schmoll, M.
    Journal: BMC Microbiology , 8 (2008) ; 174
  • Sexual development in the industrial workhorse Trichoderma reesei.
    Author(s): Seidl, V., Seibel, C., Kubicek, C. P., & Schmoll, M.
    Journal: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS), 106 (2009) ; 13909-13914
  • Trichoderma in the light of day – physiology and development.
    Author(s): Schmoll, M., Esquivel-Naranjo, E. U. and Herrera-Estrella, A.
    Journal: Fungal Genetics and Biology, 47(11) (2010) ; 909 - 916
  • Light regulation of metabolic pathways in fungi
    Author(s): Tisch, D. & Schmoll, M.
    Journal: Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 85 (5) (2010) ; 1259 - 1277
  • A Novel Class of Peptide Pheromone Precursors in Ascomycetous Fungi
    Author(s): Schmoll M., Seibel C., Tisch D., Dorrer M. and Kubicek C. P.
    Journal: Molecular Microbiology, 77 (6) (2010) ; 1483-1501
  • The phosducin-like protein PhLP1 impacts regulation of glycoside hydrolases and light response in Trichoderma reesei.
    Author(s): Tisch D, Kubicek CP, Schmoll M
    Journal: BMC Genomics, 12 (2011) ; 613
  • Unravelling the molecular basis for light modulated cellulase gene expression - the role of photoreceptors in Neurospora crassa.
    Author(s): Schmoll M, Tian C, Sun J, Tisch D, Glass NL
    Journal: BMC Genomics, 13 (2012) ; 127
  • A versatile toolkit for high throughput functional genomics with Trichoderma reesei.
    Author(s): Schuster A, Bruno KS, Collett JR, Baker SE, Seiboth B, Kubicek CP, Schmoll M
    Journal: Biotechnol Biofuels, 5 (2012) ; 1
  • Targets of light signalling in Trichoderma reesei
    Author(s): Tisch, D. and Schmoll M.
    Journal: BMC Genomics , 14 (2013) ; 657
  • Crossroads between light response and nutrient signalling: ENV1 and PhLP1 act as mutual regulatory pair in Trichoderma reesei
    Author(s): Tisch D., Schuster A. and Schmoll M.
    Journal: BMC Genomics , 15(1) (2014) ; 425
  • A fungal LOV protein has evolved to integrate blue-light and oxidative stress
    Author(s): Jameela Lokhandwala, Hilary H. Hopkins, Aroa Rodriguez-Iglesias, Christoph Dattenböck, Monika Schmoll and Brian D. Zoltowski
    Journal: Structure, 23 (2015) ; 1-10
  • Trichoderma reesei meiosis generates segmentally aneuploid progeny with higher xylanase-producing capability
    Author(s): Chuang YC, Li WC, Chen CL, Hsu PWC, Tung SY, Kuo SC, Schmoll M, and Wang TF
    Journal: Biotechnology for Biofuels, 8:30 (2015) ; 30
  • Mating type dependent partner sensing as mediated by VEL1 in Trichoderma reesei
    Author(s): Bazafkan H, Dattenböck C, Böhmdorfer S, Tisch D, Stappler E, Schmoll M.
    Journal: Molecular Microbiology, 96(6) (2015) ; 1103-18
  • The genomes of three uneven siblings – footprints of the lifestyle of three Trichoderma species
    Author(s): M. Schmoll, C. Dattenböck, A. Herrera-Estrella and 37 co-authors
    Journal: Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews, 80 (2016) ; 1-123
  • A native threonine coordinates ordered water to tune LOV photocycle kinetics and osmotic stress signaling in Trichoderma reesei ENVOY
    Author(s): Lokhandwala J, Silverman Y de la Vega RI, Hopkins HC, Britton CW, Rodriguez-Iglesias A, Bogomolni R, Schmoll M, Zoltowski BD
    Journal: J Biol Chem, 291(28) (2016) ; 14839-50
  • Abundance of secreted proteins of Trichoderma reesei is regulated by light of different intensities
    Author(s): Stappler E, Walton JD, Beier S and Schmoll M
    Journal: Front Microbiol, 8 (2017) ; 2586
  • A CRE1- regulated cluster is responsible for light dependent production of dihydrotrichotetronin in Trichoderma reesei
    Author(s): Alberto Alonso-Monroy, Eva Stappler, Andre Schuster, Michael Sulyok and Monika Schmoll
    Journal: PLoS ONE, 12(8) (2017) ; e0182530
  • Omics analyses of Trichoderma reesei CBS999.97 and QM6a indicate a relevance of female fertility for CAZyme and transporter levels
    Author(s): Tisch D, Pomraning KR, Collett JR, Freitag M, Baker SE, Chen CL, Hsu PW, Chuang YC, Schuster A, Dattenböck C, Stappler E, Sulyok M, Böhmdorfer S, Oberlerchner J, Wang TF, Schmoll M
    Journal: Appl Env Microbiol, 83(22) (2017) ; e01578-17
  • Interrelationships of VEL1 and ENV1 in light response and development in Trichoderma reesei
    Author(s): Hoda Bazafkan, Christoph Dattenböck, Eva Stappler, Sabrina Beier and Monika Schmoll
    Journal: PLoS ONE, 12(4) (2017) ; e0175946
  • SUB1 has photoreceptor dependent and independent functions in sexual development and secondary metabolism in Trichoderma reesei
    Author(s): Bazafkan H, Beier S, Stappler E, Böhmdorfer S, Oberlerchner JT, Sulyok M, Schmoll M
    Journal: Mol Microbiol, 106(5) (2017) ; 742-59
  • Analysis of light and carbon specific transcriptomes implicates a class of G-protein coupled receptors in cellulose sensing
    Author(s): Eva Stappler, Christoph Dattenböck, Doris Tisch and Monika Schmoll
    Journal: mSphere, 2 (3) (2017) ; e00089-17
  • 17 Chapters;
    Trichoderma – Biology and Applications

    Author(s): various
    Publisher: CAB International; 2013; 978-1-7864-247-5
    Series: Mukherjee, P. K., Horwitz, B. A., Singh, U. S., Mukherjee, M and Schmoll, M.
  • 40 Chapters;
    Biotechnology and Biology of Trichoderma

    Author(s): various
    Publisher: Elsevier B. V. ; 2014; 550 pages; 978-0-444-59576-8
    Series: Gupta, V. K, Schmoll M., Herrera-Estrella, A., Upadhyay, R. S., Druzhinina, I. and Tuohy, M. G.
  • Genomics analysis of biocontrol species and industrial enzyme producers from the genus Trichoderma;
    Mycota XIII, Fungal Genomics

    Author(s): Schmoll M., Seiboth B., Druzhinina I. S. and Kubicek C. P.
    Publisher: Elsevier; 2014; 233-264; 978-3-642-45218
    Series: Nowrousian M.; 2nd Edition
  • 21 chapters;
    Gene expression systems in fungi: advancements and applications

    Author(s): various
    Publisher: Springer; Heidelberg; 2016; 1-499; 978-3-319-27949-7
    Series: Monika Schmoll and Christoph Dattenböck; Fungal Biology Series
  • Filamentous fungi with improved properties (#13196402.5)
    Inventor: Monika Schmoll, Doris Tisch, André Schuster, Michael Freitag, Kyle Pomraning, Ting-Fang Wang
    Submission Date: 10.12.2013
    Issue Date: 16.04.2018

Further Information