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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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”.
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.
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.
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.
Nol was born in the Netherlands in 1997 and pursued a bachelor in Chemistry in Groningen. During his bachelor’s degree, he worked on the synthesis of bis(biurea) ligands for photoresponsive anion-templated coordination cages under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Sander Wezenberg. Eager to expand his knowledge of organic chemistry and chemical biology, he joined the Minnaard group for his master’s research with Ruben Andringa as daily supervisor. He will work on the synthesis of isotope labelled natural products relevant to figuring out the biosynthetic pathway of complex archaeal lipids.
Jules was born and raised in Groningen. He completed his Bachelor here at the RUG in molecular life science but was ultimately drawn by organic chemistry. Although relatively new in this field, he is happy to have the opportunity to start his Master internship in the group of Prof. Minnaard under daily supervision of Michiel Uiterweerd. He is highly motivated to learn as much as possible.
Bart Kieftenbelt, MSc student (Syncom BV)
Rob Lammers, MSc student
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.
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.
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.
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.