Cremer was from a family of scientists and university professors. Her father, Max Cremer, was a professor of physiology. She had two brothers, Hubert Cremer, a mathematician, and Lothar Cremer, an acoustician.
Cremer was a lecturer in gas absorption studies at the University of Innsbruck and she was aware of the liquid absorption chromatography research going on there, so she thought of a method to separate gases by utilising an inert carrier gas.
Her academic paper posted in 1944 to Naturwissenschaften was not published at the time, because the journal"s printing press was destroyed during air bombardment, albeit it was finally published after thirty years. Deutsches Museum opened an exhibition on 3 November 1995 which featured Cremer"s work in its branch in Bonn, explaining to the public how she built the first gas chromatograph with Fritz Prior in the 1940s.