Jürgen Zentek completed his studies in veterinary medicine at the University of Veterinary Medicine in Hanover in 1985, where he received his doctorate in 1987. In 1993 he became a veterinarian specializing in animal nutrition and dietetics, and received his habilitation in 1994.
From 1999 to 2001 he was appointed associate professor in Hanover, followed by a year as a visiting scholar in Bristol/UK. This was followed by an appointment to the Institute of Nutrition (Chair of Clinical Nutrition) at the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna.
In 2005 he finally accepted the call as a professor at the Institute for Animal Nutrition at the Freie Universität Berlin, where he still combines veterinary teaching and research to this day. The main focus of research has always been on the study of the intestinal microbiota and immunity of the digestive tract in monogastric animals. The prevention of health disorders in pets and farm animals, with a special focus on gastrointestinal diseases, are the most important core topics in the institute.