Friedrich studied Biology at the Martin-Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg with the focus on insect and plant physiology. In the master thesishe concentrated on unicellular organisms using the archaic algae Cyanophora paradoxa as a model organism and investigated protein transport within plastids as well as the evolution of two components of the photosynthetic electron transport chain, Cytochrome c6 and PsbP.
After graduating, a six month internship in the University of Vienna followed in the field of Astrobiology. Friedrich grew the iron oxidizing thermoacidophilic archaeon Metallosphera sedula on extraterrestrial material and took care of the ground control of an International Space Station-attached sample of the ionizing radiation enduring bacterium Deinococcus radiodurans. This was followed by another six month internship in the Max-Delbrück Centrum for molecular medicine in Berlin examining salt-induced changes of the microbiome within mouse-stool.
Friedrich is studying the molecular mechanisms of Ca2+ signaling in unicellular algae and their evolution with the MBA and University of Southampton, under the supervision of Professor Colin Brownlee and Dr Glen Wheeler