Headshot of Markus Frederich

Markus Frederich, Ph.D.

Professor of Marine Sciences


Marine Science Center 218
Biddeford Campus
Eligible for Student Opportunities

Dr. Frederich is a Professor of Marine Sciences at the University of New England. He received his masters degree in biology from the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany, where he investigated anatomical abnormalities in ants that got exposed to the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. He received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Bremen, Germany for his work at the Alfred Wegener Institute of Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven, Germany. Here he investigated stress physiology mechanisms in Antarctic crustaceans. For this project he also worked at the Station Biologique de Roscoff in France, and at the Instituto de la Patagonia, Universidad de Magallanes, in Punta Arenas, Chile. Dr. Frederich did his post doctoral work at Harvard Medical School in Boston, MA, where he investigated energy metabolism of mammalian hearts using NMR spectroscopy. In 2003 he joined the faculty of the University of New England where he established his lab investigating energy metabolism and stress physiology in marine invertebrates. He also spent several summers at the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory, MDIBL, in Bar Harbor, Maine.



M.S. in Biology
Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany
Ph.D. in Physiology
University of Bremen; Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, Bremerhaven, Germany

Post-Doctoral Training

Post-Doctoral Training, Cardiovascular Physiology
Harvard Medical School / Brigham and Women's Hospital (Boston, Massachusetts)


Current research

Characterizing the role of AMP-activated-protein kinase in temperature thresholds for crustaceans, using methods of physiology and molecular biology.  Investigating differences in stress physiology between the red and green color morph of the invasive green crab, Carcinus maenas

Investing stress physiology in different populations of green crabs

Monitoring invasive species as part of the Marine Invader Monitoring and Information Collaborative, MIMIC


Selected publications

Undergraduate students underlined

Frederich M, Lancaster ER (2022) Temperature Thresholds of Crustaceans in the Age of Climate Change. in Crustacean Physiology, ed. by R. Roer. Apple Academic Press. in press

Danziger, AM, Olson ZH, Frederich M (2022) Limitations of eDNA analysis for Carcinus maenas abundance estimations. BMC Ecol Evo 22, 14.

Danziger, AM, Frederich M (2022) Challenges in eDNA detection of the invasive European green crab, Carcinus maenas. Biological Invasions.

Himes A, Balschi WS, Pelletier G, Frederich M (2017) Color-phase specific ion regulation of the European green crab, Carcinus maenas, in an oscillating salinity environment. Journal of Shellfish Research, 36(2) 465-479

Pennoyer KE, Himes AR, Frederich M (2016) Effects of sex and color phase on ion regulation in the invasive European green crab, Carcinus maenas. Marine Biology 163(6):  1-15

Goodchild CG, Frederich M, Zeeman SI (2016) Is altered behavior linked to cellular energy regulation in a freshwater mussel (Elliptio complanata) exposed to triclosan? Comp Biochem Physiol C 179: 150-157

Goodchild CG, Frederich M, Zeeman SI (2015) AMP-activated protein kinase is a biomarker of energetic status in freshwater mussels exposed to municipal effluents. Science of the Total Environment 512–513: 201–209

Aronson RB, Frederich M, Price R, Thatje S (2015) Prospects for the return of shell-crushing crabs to Antarctica. Journal of Biogeography 42, 1–7

Sokolova IM, Frederich M, Bagwe R, Lannig G, Sukhotin AA (2012) Energy homeostasis as an integrative tool for assessing limits of environmental stress tolerance in aquatic invertebrates. Marine Environmental Research 79: 1-15

Jost JA, Podolski SM, Frederich M (2012). Enhancing thermal tolerance by eliminating the pejus range: A comparative study with three decapod crustaceans. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 444, 263-274

Frederich M, O’Rourke M, Furey N, Jost J (2009) AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) affects temperature tolerance in the rock crab, Cancer irroratus. Journal of Experimental Biology, 212: 722-730

Frederich M, O’Rourke M, Towle D (2006) Is AMP activated protein kinase expression in Cancer irroratus a better signal for temperature stress than HSP70? The MDIBL Bulletin 45: 37-39

Zhang L, He H, Frederich M, Balschi JA (2006) The relationship between 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide-ribotide and AMP activated protein kinase activity in the perfused mouse heart. Am J Physiol 290: 1235-1243

Pinz I, Perry D, Frederich M (2005) Activation of 5’-AMP activated protein kinase during anaerobiosis in the rock crab, Cancer irroratus. The MDIBL Bulletin 44: 31-32

Frederich M, Zhang L, Balschi JA (2005) Hypoxia and AMP independently alter AMP-activated protein kinase activity in heart. Am J Physiol 288: H2412-H2421

Frederich M, Balschi JA (2002) The relationship between AMP-activated protein kinase activity and AMP concentration in the isolated perfused rat heart. J Biol Chem 277/3: 1928-1932

Bock C, Frederich M, Wittig RM, Pörtner HO (2001) Simultaneous observation of haemolymph flow and ventilation in marine spider crabs at different temperatures: a flow weighted MRI study. Magn Res Imag 19: 1113-1124

Frederich M, Sartoris FJ, Pörtner HO (2001) Distribution patterns of decapod crustaceans in polar areas: A result of magnesium regulation? Polar Biology 24/10: 719-723

Frederich M, Sartoris FJ, Arntz WE, Pörtner HO (2000) Haemolymph Mg2+ regulation in decapod crustaceans: physiological correlates and ecological consequences in polar areas. J Exp Biol 203: 1383-1393

Frederich M, Pörtner HO (2000) Oxygen limitation of thermal tolerance defined by cardiac and ventilatory performance in spider crab Maja squinado. Am J Physiol 279: R1531-R1538

Frederich M, DeWachter B, Pörtner HO (2000) Cold tolerance and the regulation of cardiac performance and hemolymph distribution in Maja squinado (Crustacea: Decapoda). Physiol Zool 73/4: 406-415

Other scholarly activity

Organizer of the annual Northeast Undergraduate Research and Development Symposium, NURDS, which draws every year about 200 undergraduate researchers from more than 60 different Universities in the Northeast US and Maritime Canada to UNE to present their research.

Funded grants

1999. Travel grant (D/97/10464) from the DAAD (German academic exchange service) for performing experiments at the Instituto de la Patagonia, Universidad de Magallanes, Punta Arenas, Chile

2004. New Investigator Award from the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory, Salisbury Cove, ME, $5,500

2005. New Investigator Award from the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory, Salisbury Cove, ME, $6,000

2006. American Physiological Society, Research Career Enhancement Award, $3,072

2006. National Science Foundation, research grant “Fast and slow cellular response to thermal stress: the role of AMP activated protein kinase and HSP70 in two decapod crustacean species”, $377,247, June 2007-June 2010

2006. National Science Foundation, course development grant, Co-PI with Dr. Larry Fritz “A Synthesis of Education and Research Leading to Graduation (SynER-G) at the University of New England”, 
$575,595, September 2007-September 2011

2008. Supplement to National Science Foundation course development grant (SynER-G, Co-Pi with Larry Fritz), to support an undergraduate research conference at UNE in March 2009, $7,500

2014. Maine SeaGrant Program Development Grant: "Whole-animal and molecular responses of Blue Mussels (Mytilus edulis) exposed to municipal effluent: application of a bioenergetics framework". $3,000

2014. National Science Foundation: "TURBO: The Undergraduate Saco River Biodiversity Observatory -- A Long-Term Ecological Research-Style Research Experience to Enhance STEM Education"; 
$640,000 for 5 years

2015. National Science Foundation: "MRI: Acquisition of a FlowCam to enhance Marine Science Research and Education at the University of New England". $118,475 for 3 years

2019. National Science Foundation: "Molecule to Ecosystem: Environmental DNA as the nexus of coastal ecosystem sustainability for Maine (Maine eDNA). $100,000 for 5 years (this is a part of a larger $20 million collaborative grant)  

2020. National Science Foundation: “Lobster grant Linking physiological thermal thresholds to the distribution of lobster settlers and juveniles”. $312,150 for 3 years (this is a part of a larger 
$850,000 collaborative grant) 


Invited plenary presentation

Frederich M, Toombs C, Pennoyer K (2012) Color polymorphism in the Green crab, Carcinus maenas: are green morphs really more stress tolerant than red morphs? Annual Meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, Charleston, SC, January 3-7, invited talk

Frederich M (2009) AMPK, a novel cellular marker for acute stress in marine invertebrates. Frenchman Bay Annual Crustacean Symposium, July 13-14, 2009 Salisbury Cove, ME, invited talk

Frederich M (2008) Is AMP-activated protein kinase a better signal for temperature stress than HSP70 in Cancer irroratus? University of Southern Maine, Portland, ME, October 23 2008, invited seminar

Frederich M (2008) Molecular markers for temperature stress in decapod crustaceans. Darling Marine Center, Walpole, ME, invited seminar

Research interests

Environmental DNA and its application in Invasive species biology.

Temperature thresholds and adaptation in marine invertebrates, regulation of energy metabolism under stress.

See our video of a  green crab running on a treadmill.

Research topics

Invasive Species
Invertebrate Physiology
Marine Physiological Ecology
Science Pedagogy