The Department of Marine Zoology was formed in 2004 during the last structural reorganisation of the institute. It includes all marine sections of the former Department of Aquatic Zoology to which the Micropaleontology (I) Section was added. Scientific work focusses on Mega- and Macrobenthos in the framework of larger marine projects covering multiple departments. Contrary to the other two marine units within Senckenberg, the Marine Zoology Department is in charge of large collections and their opening out to the scientific community. The department is in charge of the Central Zoological Library which can be used by all departments.
Main scientific research areas are the oceanic deep sea, deep sea hydrothermal vents, Arabian seas, East Asian seas and the North Sea.