Current Members

Szymanski Group / UMCG / University of Groningen

Melody Boëtius, MSc

Melody obtained her BSc degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the Vrije Universiteit (VU) Amsterdam, where she worked on developing fluorescent dyes during her BSc research project. She then went on to study Drug Discovery & Safety (MSc) at the VU and did her MSc research project on developing a synthetic route and chiral resolution for the anti-HIV drug GS-6207. She is currently working in our lab as PhD student on molecular tools for optical imaging.

Jeffrey Boxma, BSc

Jeffrey obtained his BSc. in Chemistry in 2022 at the Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen. He performed his bachelor research project in the Drug Design group at the University of Groningen. Here, he worked on the synthesis of SARS_CoV-2 3CLpro inhibitors. In 2023, he obtained a pre-master and is currently doing his MSc. in Science Education and Communication at the University of Groningen.

María Rosa Márquez García, MSc

Rosa obtained her BSc degree in Chemistry at the University of Seville, Spain. Here she synthesized novel inhibitors of NAMPT enzyme during her bachelor research project. Then she moved to Madrid to study her MSc in Organic Chemistry at the Complutense University of Madrid where she worked on the development of new synthetic methodologies based on allenes during her master research project. She is currently pursuing her PhD in our group on the development of photoacoustic medical imaging agents.

Raffaella Parlato, MSc

Raffaella obtained her MSc degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology in 2019 at the University of Cagliari, Italy. She studied the isolation and crystallization of photosystem II supercomplex from Tobacco plants. Then she moved to the Netherlands, in 2020, to perform her PhD at the University of Groningen with Patrick Van der Wel and Wiktor Szymanski on solid-state NMR of responsive peptides and proteins.

Albert Schulte, MSc

Albert was born in Peize, the Netherlands in 1994. He obtained his bachelor degree at the University of Groningen in 2016. He conducted his master research project in the field of photopharmacology and he is finalizing his PhD on the photocontrol of various biological processes. In Febraury 2024, he joined our lab as a post-doc to work on drugs activated with photons with differnet energies.

Désanka Stoppels, BSc

Désanka obtained her BSc degree in Pharmacy at the University of Groningen in 2022. During her BSc, she worked on the pharmacometabolomics of Metoprolol to find its metabolite-profile using results from liquid chromatography and MS. She is working on her MSc research project in the Szymanski group, aiming to optimize the properties of photosensitizers.

Robin van der Straat, BSc

Robin obtained his BSc degree in Chemistry at the Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen in 2015. In 2016 he joined the Drug Design research group of prof. Alexander Dömling as research technician. He worked on several projects such as macrocyclic Interleukin 17 (IL17) inhibitors, 1,5-disubstituted tetrazoles as antagonists of the programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) and inhibitors for the SARS_CoV-2 main protease 3CLpro. In 2023 he joined the Szymanski group to fulfill the task of lab manager.

Tómas Þórir Tómasson, BSc

Tómas obtained his BSc degree in Pharmacy at the University of Iceland, where he worked on the development of paracetamol based controlled-release tablets as his BSc research project. He is currently doing his MSc in Medical Pharmaceutical Sciences following the track of Pharmaceutical Design and Engineering. For his first research project he worked on a biocatalytic cascade towards the production of functionalized piperazines. He is currently working on a research project in the Szymanski Lab on the multicomponent synthesis of fluorophores.

Quentin Vivien, MSc

Quentin spent two years post high school in CPGE classes in Bordeaux, after which he entered in 2019 the chemistry department of the Ecole Normale Supérieure Paris-Saclay. For his BSc thesis, he joined the lab of Prof C. Ortiz Mellet in Seville to work on photoswitchable iminosugars. He obtained his MSc summa cum laude at the Ecole Polytechnique, which he completed by performing a research project in the Feringa group on PPG design. In 2022, he entered our group for a pre-PhD year working on the optical imaging selective for gram-Negative bacteria.

Ilse Welleman, MSc

Ilse obtained her Bachelor of applied Science (B AS) at the Hogeschool Leiden in 2014, working on the composition of milk fat at the RUG in the group of professor Minnaard (in collaboration with FrieslandCampina). She stayed after graduation at the RUG to do a pre-master (2015) and master research project (2017), focusing on the development of responsive ParaCEST contrast agents. She is currently pursuing her PhD in our group on the development of smart medical imaging agents.

Feringa Group / University of Groningen

Annemarie Doze, MSc

Annemarie obtained her BSc degree in Chemistry at the University of Groningen. She continued with her MSc at the same university, during which she performed her master research project in our group on metabolic labelling of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. To complete her MSc studies, she performed a research project in the group of Prof. Laura Kiessling at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA). In 2022, she returned to Groningen to perform her PhD research on ultrafast photoclick reactions for PET imaging.

David Grantz, MSc

David was born in Heidelberg, Germany. He obtained his BSc and MSc degree in chemistry at the Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel. During his master studies, he spent a semester abroad in Italy at the Università degli Studi di Bari Aldo Moro. For his master thesis, he worked under the supervision of Prof. Rainer Herges on generation of aryne-diazocines for incorporation in photocontrolled molecular pincers. In November 2022, he joined the Feringa group as a PhD student to work on the photocontrol of antibiotics within the bio-optical window.

Ilayda Peduk, MSc

Ilayda obtained her BSc in Chemistry, with an internship on asymmetric catalysis in the group of Prof. Syuzanna R. Harutyunyan at the University of Groningen (Sep. 2017) and a BSc in Sensor Technology with internship in Seoul (South-Korea) on off-axis digital holography in the super-depth imaging group of Prof. Wonshik Choi. Afterwards, she obtained an MSc in Chemistry (2020 – 2022), for which she did her research project on photocleavable antibiotics in the Feringa group. In 2022, she rejoined the Feringa group for a PhD on photopharmacology and molecular motors.