Dr. Prathap Kaniraj
Prathap currently works on the synthesis of long fatty acids (mycolic acid-a natural product isolated from Mycobacterium tuberculosis). He completed his PhD at CSMCRI, India in 2012 with late Prof. R. I. Kureshy on the synthesis of pharmaceutically active chiral β-amino alcohols (Asymmetric catalysis). After this, he worked as a Lady Davis and PBC postdoctoral fellow at the TECHNION- Israel Institute of technology, Israel in 2012-2015 with Prof. Galiya Mayyan, developing the novel peptidomimetic material (Biomimetic chemistry). He then moved to the KTH-Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden as a Wenner-Gren Postdoctoral fellow (2016-2018) to develop the Nano cellulose based (Nano- chemistry) catalytic system in water with Prof. Peter Diner. Later, he moved to Wageningen university (NL) as a research fellow with Prof. Joris Sperkel and Prof. Bauke Albeda, developing a new mechanoresponsive soft polymer (Mechano chemistry),before joining the Minnaard Lab in 2021.
Dr. Marios Kidonakis
Marios Kidonakis was born in Heraklion, Greece. He obtained his B.Sc. (valedictorian), M.Sc. and Ph.D. (honors) at the Department of Chemistry, University of Crete. During his doctoral studies he focused on several organic transformations catalyzed by Au nanoparticles. As a doctoral student he was selected to participate at the 67th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting dedicated to Chemistry. For his research achievements he received the Hildergard Zervas award, issued by the Academy of Athens for groundbreaking research in the area of Organic Chemistry. Following his PhD, he worked for two years as an adjunct lecturer at the University of Crete. In September 2021 he joined the group of Prof. Minnaard as a NIH postdoctoral fellow to work on the synthesis and biochemical evaluation of lipids against Tuberculosis. His interests lie within the area of total synthesis and catalysis.
Dr. Samarpita Mahapatra
Samarpita was born in 1988 in Kolkata, India. She obtained her Master’s degree in Chemistry in 2011 at University of Delhi. During her master she got selected for Summer Research Fellowship under Indian Academy of Sciences. As a summer research fellow, she worked with Prof. Dilip. D. Dhavale, University of Pune on carbohydrate chemistry and how it can be implemented into designing a carbohydrate based supramolecule. Later, she cleared the national level fellowship exam (CSIR-UGC NET) for doctoral studies and started her PhD in Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur under the supervision of Prof. Dattatraya H. Dethe. As a PhD she worked upon enantioselective total synthesis of terpene based natural products. In September 2020, she joined the group of Prof. Minnaard for oLife postdoctoral research, where her work is based upon synthesis and biochemical studies of Acidobacterial ether lipids.
Dr. Niels Reintjens
Niels was born 1989 in Sittard, The Netherlands. In 2013, he obtained his Master’s degree in Chemistry at Leiden University. During his master he worked of the synthesis of bapphen-based mononuclear Fe(II) spin crossover complexes in the group of Prof. Bouwman and on the development of a new participating pivaloyl protecting group and its use in the synthesis of repeating tri- and tetrarhamnosides in the group of Prof. Overkleeft. He started his PhD in 2013 under the supervision of Prof van der Marel and Dr. Codée, where he worked on the synthesis of carbohydrate ligands for immune receptors and their conjugation to antigenic peptides to be used as cancer vaccines. During his PhD he obtained a second Master’s degree in Education. In June 2019, he joined the group of Prof. Minnaard as a postdoctoral fellow.
Maryam was born in 1990 in Tehran, Iran. In 2014 she graduated with a Pharm.D degree from the University of Mazandaran, Iran. Her research work concerned the development of selective COX-2 inhibitors as potential anti-inflammatory agents. In 2017 she came to the Netherlands to perform her doctoral studies in the Drug Design department of the University of Groningen under the supervision of Prof. Dӧmling. Her research was focused on the applications of multicomponent reactions in medicinal chemistry. In December 2019 she joined the research group of Prof. Minnaard to continue her PhD. She currently works on selective modifications of unprotected carbohydrates as well as the total synthesis of a pheromone component of Trichogramma species.
Ruben was born in 1990 in Groningen, The Netherlands. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry in 2014 from the University of Groningen. During his Masters he worked on the total synthesis of isotopically labelled archaeal lipids in the group of Prof. Adriaan Minnaard (University of Groningen), for which he won the 2016 Unilever Research prize. In 2015 he obtained an Erasmus grant to work in the research group of Prof. Thomas Magauer at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich on Asymmetric Palladium Catalyzed Dearomative Tsuji-Trost Allylations. In 2017 he returned to the group of Prof. Minnaard as PhD student to continue working on the synthesis of archaeal lipids and other complex natural products. The main focus of his research is uncovering the biosynthetic pathway of the 72-membered tetra-ether lipids found in archaea.
Simona was born in 1991 in Sicily, Italy. In 2016 she obtained her Master degree in Pharmacy with cum laude at the University of Catania (Italy). During her Master she worked in the research group of Prof. O. Prezzavento on the Synthesis and binding assays of molecules interacting with sigma-2 receptors: promising anticancer agents. In 2015 she obtained an Erasmus plus fellowship to work at Université Paris Descartes (France) in the research group of Prof. H. Dhimane/Dr. P. I. Dalko on the synthesis of Epi(polythio)diketopiperazine Mycotoxins: synthesis of the meso-chimonantine core of Leptosins. In January 2017 she joined the research group of Prof. Minnaard as a PhD student at the University of Groningen to work on Novel catalysis for the late stage modification of complex antibiotics.
Daan was born in 1996 in Groningen. He obtained both his bachelor’s and master’s degree cum laude from the University of Groningen. During his master’s he worked on the total synthesis of Dissectol A and Serratumin A under supervision of prof. Adri Minnaard, for which he was awarded the Unilever Research Prize 2019. He then did an internship in the group of prof. Johan Winne at Ghent University, where he worked on novel cycloaddition strategies for the synthesis of natural products. In 2020 he received a PhD scholarship from the University of Groningen to work on an interdisciplinary project in the groups of prof. Adri Minnaard and dr. Sahar El Aidy, combining natural product synthesis with human gut microbiome research.
Guillaume Le Calvez
Guillaume was born in Pabu, France in 1990. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry at the University of Rennes 1, France in 2013. During his Bachelor he did an internship in the group of Dr. Michèle Baudy-Floc’h on the synthesis of amino acid analogues. In 2016, he obtained his Master’s degree of Molecular Chemistry at the University of Rennes 1. During his studies, he worked on the synthesis of 1-tuberculosinyl adenosine analogues in the group of Prof. Adriaan Minnaard (University of Groningen, The Netherlands). He also worked on the synthesis, optimization and activity of Roscovitine analogues, protein kinase inhibitors involved in kidney disease, under the supervision of Prof. Hervé Galons in ManRos Therapeutics Company (Roscoff, France). In January 2017, he joined the group of Prof. Minnaard as a PhD student to work on the synthesis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis glycolipids.
Hung-Chien was born in 1993 in Taiwan. In 2016, he obtained his Bachelor’s degree in chemistry from National Taiwan Normal University. During his undergraduate studies, he conducted a research project on asymmetric synthesis of the derivatives of tetrahydroquinoline through organocatalysis under the supervision of Prof. Wenwei Lin. Afterwards, he carried out his studies in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. In 2018, he obtained his Master’s degree in chemistry: Molecular Sciences (joint degree) from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and the Universiteit van Amsterdam. His Master’s project was focusing on the synthesis of the derivatives of pyrimido[4,5-d]pyrimidines through nickel-catalyzed isocyanide insertion reactions supervised by Prof. Romano Orru and Dr. Eelco Ruijter. In August 2018, he joined the group of Prof. Minnaard as a PhD student working on developing novel catalysts for the synthesis of polyesters.
Zonghao was born in 1993 in Heze, China. In 2016, he obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy from Wuhan University of Science and Technology. During his undergraduate studies, he conducted a research project on separation, purification and identification of natural compounds from Pyrola decorata under the supervision of Associate Prof. Xiliang Yang. Afterwards, he carried his studies in Beijing and Guangzhou. In 2020, he obtained his Master’s degree in Biological Engineering from University of Chinese Academy of Science. His Master’s project was focusing on research on substances with the function of quorum sensing of one deep-sea derived Actinomycetes supervised by Researcher Hao Yin. In January 2021, he joined the research group of Prof. Minnaard as a PhD student working on the synthetic and analytical studies of deoxypropionates in Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
Kees van der Loo
Kees was born in Apeldoorn, The Netherlands, in 1986. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry at HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht in 2010. After working at Toxic.nl composing safety sheets, Kees started as an Associate Scientist at Syncom BV in 2011 and he got promoted to Research Scientist in 2014. During his career at Syncom, he was involved in a wide variety of commercial research projects, ranging from custom synthesis of complex molecules on milligram to multi-gram scale, stable isotope labeling, chiral resolution, route scouting, process optimization and scale-up. In addition, he was a core member of the continuous flow chemistry team, responsible for designing and building (photo)-flow reactors and executing flow chemistry projects. In 2020 Kees joined the group of Prof. Minnaard as a PhD student to work on novel carbohydrate-based scaffolds for library synthesis.
Nittert was born in 1993 in Rinsumageast, the Netherlands. In 2014 he obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from the University of Groningen and obtained his master’s degree in Chemistry in 2017 also from the University of Groningen. During his master he worked in the group of Prof. Adriaan Minnaard on the synthesis of amphiphilic neomycin B derivatives via a regioselective oxidation. In 2016 he obtained a Marco Polo fund to do an internship in the group of Dr. Ilija Coric on palladium catalysed C-H activations. Thereafter he returned to the group of Prof. Minnaard for his PhD studies. His research focuses on the application of site selective oxidation of sugars, such as integration of useful functional groups and the synthesis of complex molecular structures.
Sarina C. Maßmann
Sarina was born in 1992 in Höxter, Germany. In 2015, she obtained her Bachelor´s degree in chemistry from the Friedrich-Schiller-University of Jena, Germany. Afterwards, she was research student for the Bayer AG in Wuppertal working on the development of novel drugs to treat cardiac diseases under supervision of Dr. Riedel. In 2018, Sarina obtained her Master´s degree after defending successfully her thesis about the total synthesis of the natural product (–)-Thallusin, which is a morphogenetic growth factor. There she was member of the group of Prof. Arndt (FSU Jena). During her studies she was also working on different projects within academia and industry e.g. drug delivery processes for Evonik. After reaching her Master´s degree, she worked as chemist for Syncom B.V. in Groningen, until she joined the research group of Prof. Minnaard in October 2018 as PhD-student. Now Sarina is working on “building blocks preparation through the selective catalytic oxidation of oligosaccharides”.
Marc was born in 1991 in Tiel, the Netherlands. He obtained both his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Chemistry from the University of Groningen, in 2016 and 2019 respectively.
His Master research, performed in the group of Prof. Minnaard, involved the synthesis of bifluorescence-labeled oligosaccharides for the detection of amylase activity.
He was part of the 2019 iGEM Groningen team, where he worked on the modification of commercial 3D printer hardware for biotech applications.
In December 2019, he returned to the Minnaard group as a PhD student. His current research efforts are focused on employing carbohydrates as scaffolds for medicinal chemistry and applying cheminformatics tools to assist organic synthesis.
Michiel T. Uiterweerd
Michiel was born in 1990, in Arnhem, The Netherlands. After finishing vocational laboratory school (MBO), he pursued his chemistry studies to obtain his Bachelor’s degree at the HAN university of applied sciences in Nijmegen. Following his Bachelor internship at the Wageningen university in the group of Dr. Tom Wennekes, he won the Royal Netherlands Chemical Society “Gouden spatel” award for his Bachelor thesis on the synthetic studies of Neuraminidase activity based probes. Michiel obtained his Master’s degree from the University of Amsterdam and the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (Joint degree). During his Master’s program he performed his research at the group of Dr. Tati Fernández-Ibáñez (UvA), where he worked on the development of palladium catalyzed C⸻H allylation reactions on simple arenes. Additionally during another research project, Michiel worked on the synthesis of macrocyclic spiro-compounds in the group of Prof. van Maarseveen (UvA). In June 2018, he started his PhD research in the group of Prof. Minaard . His research will cover the total synthesis of the recently discovered polyketide Lugdunomycin.
Dhineshkumar was born in Tamil Nadu, India in 1987. After his initial schooling at Wandiwash, he obtained his Bachelor’s degree in 2007 and Master’s degree in 2009 from the Department of Chemistry, Loyola College (Autonomous), Chennai. After qualifying CSIR-JRF in December 2010 and GATE in February 2011, he joined the Department of Organic Chemistry, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, for a PhD. under the supervision of Prof. K. R. Prabhu in 2011. During this period he worked on the development of novel synthetic methods using iodine, and copper as a catalyst in organic synthesis. He obtained his PhD in November’ 2016 and continued as a Research Associate in the same lab until August 2017. Subsequently, he joined the group of Prof. Minnaard as a postdoc in September 2017 to work on the total synthesis of Mycolic acid.
Vivek was born in Jajaur, India. He obtained his Master’s degree in 2009 from the University of Lucknow. During his Master he worked on the Conformational Analysis of Biologically Relevant Heterocyclic Compounds & b-Peptide Drug Interaction by NMR-Spectroscopy. Thereafter, he served as a junior research fellow at G.B.P.U.A.T. Pantnagar. He started his PhD at the Indian Institute of Technology Mandi and in 2013 obtained the DAAD sandwich-model scholarship to conduct research at Eberhard Karls University Tübingen, Germany in the group of Prof. Dr. Martin E. Maier. During this period he studied C–H-Activation, Organocatalysis, and Synthesis of Amphidinolide Q. in 2016 he obtained his PhD with distinction “Magna cum Laude”. Subsequently he joined the group of Prof. Minnaard as a postdoc to work on the modification of 1‑Tuberculosinyl Adenosine & synthesis of DAT-Alkene for the detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
Mira was born in Schweinfurt, Germany in 1991. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, Germany in 2013. In the following year she moved on to do her Master studies in Bio-Pharmaceutcial Sciences at the University of Leiden, The Netherlands. During this time she specialized in synthetic organic chemistry and did extensive laboratory internships in the group of Prof. IJzerman (Leiden University) and the group of Prof. Minnaard (University of Groningen). She obtained her Master’s degree in 2016 with the distinction ‘cum laude’ and in the same year she started her PhD studies in the Minnaard group. Her research is focused on the asymmetric synthesis of complex natural products with biological relevance.
Nabil was born in Breda, The Netherlands in 1989. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree from Avans University of applied sciences in 2011. During his studies he did an internship in the group of Bert Meijer where he synthesized and studied single chain polymic nanoparticles. He then went to Mercachem in Nijmegen to do his graduation research on the synthesis of novel PDA2 inhibitors. The same year he started his Master studies at the VU University in Amsterdam. After working on the total synthesis of Solanoeclepin A in the group of Prof. Hiemstra, he obtained his Master’s degree in November 2013. He worked as a guest researcher in the group of Overkleeft in Leiden for three months, after which he moved to Groningen to embark on his PhD research in the group of Prof. Minnaard in July 2014. His research topics are the regioselective modification of aminoglycoside antibiotics and the total synthesis of Mycolic acid.
I.C. (Steven) Wan
Steven was born in Macau, Special Administrative Region of China in 1991. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry with highest honor at University of California, Berkeley in 2012. After his Bachelor’s he worked in the group of Prof. Andrew Streitweisser on Computational Chemistry. In 2015, he obtained his Master’s degree in Chemistry at the University of Groningen with honor. His research focused on the synthesis and the use of bidente P-chial phosphine ligands under the supervision of Prof. Adriaan Minnaard. He also worked in the group of Matthias Bickelhaupt in the Free University of Amsterdam as an intern on Computational Chemistry on palladium-mediated beta-hydride elimination process. In October 2015, he joined the group of Prof. Minnaard as a PhD student to work on the synthesis of C3-branched carbohydrates with photoredox catalysis and the mechanistic investigation.
He was born in Wuhan, China. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy in 2011 at the Kunming University of Science and Technology. After that, he stayed to continue his Master’s degree. During his Master’s studies, he worked on the synthesis of flavornoids and their analogues. In 2014, he received a scholarship supported by China scholarship council to do a PhD at the University of Groningen, Netherlands. He has finished two projects related to multicomponent reaction in the group of Prof Domling (GRIP institute). In May 2016, he joined the group of Prof. Minnaard to work on the selective oxidation of aminoglycosides.