Light has major impacts on algae (i) serving as energy source for photosynthesis, (ii) triggering behavioral responses under the control of sensory photoreceptors and (iii) entraining their circadian clocks by light-dark cycles. In the second funding period of this research group, we will mainly focus on light-driven processes in unicellular algae with sequenced genomes and established genetic tools such as the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum, or the red alga Cyanidioschyzon merolae, allowing both integrated genome and proteome analyses. Relevant proteins involved in light-driven processes in these organisms will be under investigation, including potential/meanwhile known light-activated photoreceptors such as plant-, animal- and DASH-like cryptochromes (CRYs), aureochromes (AUREOs) and novel rhodopsins. Within an interdisciplinary team, we will elucidate their detailed molecular function, conduct biophysical spectroscopic analysis, and solve the crystal structure of selected proteins. Moreover, we will provide special plattforms for proteome analysis (Maria Mittag), nuclear gene targeting (Peter Hegemann) and next generation sequencing (Andreas Weber) within the Central Project.