The Feringa group

Group leader

Prof.dr. Ben L. Feringa
(Jacobus van't Hoff Distinguished Professor of Molecular Sciences)
Prof. Ben L. Feringa obtained his PhD. at the University of Groningen, where he was appointed full professor in 1988, after working as research scientist for Shell. Under his guidance the Feringa group has developed extensive expertise in the fields of organic chemistry, nanotechnology, asymmetric catalysis. His discovery of the molecular motor ranks highly among the many discoveries made over the years. In 2016 Prof. Feringa was awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry, together with Jean-Pierre Sauvage and Sir James Fraser Stoddart.

Scientific staff

Dr. Wiktor Szymanski
(http://www.szymanski-lab.nl/)
Wiktor Szymański received his PhD degree from The Warsaw University of Technology, Poland, in 2008. He spent two years working on the use of biotransformations in organic chemistry with Prof. Ben L. Feringa and Prof. Dick B. Janssen at the University of Groningen. Since 2010 he has been working on the construction of photoactive protein- peptide- and DNA-bioconjugates and photophamracology in the Feringa Labs. As of 2014, he shares his time between Feringa group and the Department of Radiology, University Medical Center Groningen, where he is appointed.

Dr. Anouk Lubbe
Anouk Lubbe studied chemistry at the University of Groningen. She started investigating molecular motors in 2010, and subsequently completed her BSc and MSc research on that topic, as well as an internship with prof. Jean-Marie Lehn at the University of Strasbourg. In 2017 she completed her PhD under the guidance of prof. Ben Feringa and dr. Wiktor Szymanski. After collaborating with prof. Feringa on a popular science book she left Groningen to travel. As of February 2019 she has returned to the Feringa lab, as a research manager.

Technical support

Ing. Monique Smith
After passing the exam for HLO (High Laboratory Education) in 1997, I started working at Akzo Nobel Central Research in Arnhem at the department for resin research for 3 years. Then I went to a company which manufactures ink for the packaging industry at Flint Ink in Winschoten for 1,5 years. Subsequently I worked at Philips Consumer Lifestyle at the Advanced Technology Center for 8 years before starting here at the RUG at the Stratingh Institute in 2010 where I manage the chromatography department.

Ing. Hans van der Velde
Hans van der Velde received his diploma for the HLO (High Laboratory Education) in 1995. After this he started working at several companies in the city of Groningen (Polymer Service Centre Groningen and Selact). Since 2006 he is responsible for the Analytical Department.

Ing. Renze Sneep
Renze Sneep studied Analytical and Organic Chemistry at the Hanzehogeschool Groningen, where he completed his BSc. In his graduation year, he was working as an intern at the Chromatography and Mass Spectrometry department of the Stratingh Institute for Chemistry. Since December 2017 he is working for the Stratingh Institute, managing the Chromatography department together with Monique.

John de Boer
John de Boer studied chemistry at the Van Hall Larenstein University of Applied Sciences in Leeuwarden. In the course of his studies, he worked at BASF on NIR spectroscopy, at Syncom BV on intramolecular [2+2] photocycloaddition in continuous-flow and at the University of Groningen in the Drug Design group of Prof. Alexander Dömling on imidazo[1,2-a]pyrazin-8-amines. Since May 2019, he is working for the Stratingh Institute, managing lab equipment and assisting in research projects

Postdocs

Dr. Lukas Pfeifer
Originally from Austria, Lukas completed his BSc in Chemistry and Biochemistry at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich, in 2012, which included a short stay in the group of Prof. Varinder Aggarwal at the University of Bristol. He then joined the group of Prof. Véronique Gouverneur at the University of Oxford to pursue a PhD in the field of fluorine chemistry. After finishing his studies there in early 2017 he joined the Feringa group as a postdoctoral researcher working on novel carbene ligands, metal-binding as well as visible light activated molecular motors.

Dr. Ruth Dorel
Ruth Dorel was born in Zaragoza (Spain) in 1989. She completed her BSc in Chemistry at the University of Zaragoza in 2012 and next moved to Tarragona (Spain) where she carried out her MSc and PhD studies working in the group of Prof. Antonio M. Echavarren at the Institute of Chemical Research of Catalonia (ICIQ). The focus of her doctoral research was the synthesis of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and natural products combined with the development of new metal-catalyzed synthetic methodology. During her graduate studies she also carried out research stays in the groups of Prof. John Montgomery (University of Michigan, 2014) and Prof. John F. Hartwig (UC Berkeley, 2016). After earning her PhD in 2017, Ruth joined the group of Prof. Ben Feringa to work on the design and synthesis of new molecular motors as a Ramón Areces postdoctoral fellow.

Dr. José Berrocal
José Augusto was born in Italy (Orvieto) in 1986 and he is originally from Panama. He obtained his BSc (2008) and MSc (2010) in Chemistry at University of Rome “La Sapienza” in the group of Prof. Luigi Mandolini. During his MSc project he worked in the field of Dynamic Combinatorial Chemistry, with a special focus on the template-induced amplification of macrocyclic receptors. In January 2014 he received his PhD from the same University, working under the supervision of Dr. Stefano Di Stefano and Prof. Luigi Mandolini. His PhD focused on physical organic chemistry and more specifically on the quantitative evaluation of the efficiency of intramolecular reactions. During the PhD he spent six months as a guest in the group of Prof. Bert Meijer at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e). In April 2014 he moved back to Eindhoven as a Post Doc in the Meijer group, focusing on the nanophase separation of monodisperse macromolecules in between liquid crystals and block copolymers. José joined the Feringa group as Post Doc in September 2017, working on the design and synthesis of third generation unidirectional motors.

Dr. Jaime Mateos Gil
Jaime Mateos Gil was born in Talavera de la Reina (Spain) in 1987. He obtained his BSc in Chemistry at Complutense University of Madrid in 2010, where he also carried out his PhD under the supervision of Prof. M. A. Herranz and Prof. Nazario Martin, working on the chemical reactivity of carbon nanostructures. In 2012 he carried out two predoctoral research stays in Japan, firstly, at Prof. Takeshi Akasaka Group at the Tsukuba Life Science Center for Advanced Research (TARA Center) and later at Prof. Yasujiro Murata Group at the Institute for Chemical Research of the Kyoto University. After completing his PhD in 2015, he joined Dr. Martin Fananas group at the Center for Research in Biological Chemistry and Molecular Materials (CIQUS, Santiago de Compostela) as postdoctoral researcher, developing dual metal catalyzed methodologies for the efficient synthesis of organic structures. In 2018 he joined Prof. Feringa at the Stratingh Institute for Chemistry, focusing on organolithium cross-coupling reactions.

Dr. Greg Boursalian
Greg Boursalian, a native of Newbury Park, California, began his studies at Moorpark College before transferring to UC Berkeley in 2006, where he performed his undergraduate research in the group of K. Peter C. Vollhardt. He graduated in 2009 with highest honors, and in 2010 he embarked on his graduate studies at Harvard University as a National Science Foundation fellow. Greg performed his thesis research in the group of Tobias Ritter, working on the development of new approaches to C-H functionalization. He relocated with the Ritter group in 2015 to the Max-Planck-Institut für Kohlenforschung in Mülheim and der Ruhr, Germany, and received his PhD from Harvard one year later in 2016. After remaining for a time in the Ritter lab as a postdoc, spending a semester teaching chemistry to undergraduates back home in California, and working on a book project with Professor Ritter, he joined the Feringa group in 2018 to work on the development of light-driven molecular motors.

Dr. Jeffrey Buter
Jeffrey Buter obtained his BSc in analytical chemistry at the Hanze University for applied sciences in Groningen (2008). Following his BSc he pursued his MSc in molecular chemistry at the University of Groningen, which he obtained in 2011. He then continued his academic career at the University of Groningen by performing a PhD in the group of Prof. Adriaan J. Minnaard, working on the stereoselective total synthesis of biologically active molecules, from which he graduated cum laude (2016). After his PhD studies he moved to the United States of America for postdoctoral research in the group of D. Branch Moody (MD) at Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School (2016-2018). Here he worked on unravelling the survival mechanism of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and the discovery of a new virulence factor from Salmonella typhi. As of September 2018, Jeffrey returned to the University of Groningen to join the research group of Prof. Ben Feringa where he will work on new cross-coupling methodology with organolithium reagents.

Dr. Nadja Simeth
Nadja studied chemistry at the University of Regensburg, Germany, where she obtained her M.Sc. in 2014. She conduced her master project under the joint supervision of Burkhard König and Morten Grøtli with a research stay at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Then, she returned to Regensburg to pursue her doctorate studies with Burkhard König. After a short research stay with Maurizio Fagnoni at the University of Pavia in 2017, she defended her thesis in summer 2018. Currently, she is working as a postdoctoral researcher in the Feringa Labs focusing on light-mediated DNA modulation supported by a Feodor-Lynen Fellowship of the Humboldt Association.

Dr. Niklas Thiel
Niklas O. Thiel was born in Berlin, Germany. He did his BSc (2012) at the TU Berlin in the group of Rueck-Braun working on the synthesis of photoswitches. After that he did his MSc (2014) and PhD (2018) in the group of Teichert working on the development of stereoselective hydrogenation reactions. In late 2018 he joined the Feringa group for a postdoctoral research stay where he will be working on the combination of dynamic covalent chemistry and light-driven rotary motors.

Dr. Romain Costil
Romain was born in Saint-Nazaire (France). In 2014, he was awarded a Diplome d’ingénieur in Organic, Bio-organic and Therapeutic Chemistry from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Mulhouse (France). During his studies, he synthesised multiple drug candidates for commercial use at Axon MedChem in Groningen (The Netherlands). He then joined the group of Prof. Jonathan Clayden in Bristol (United Kingdom) for a MSc project in foldamer chemistry, followed by a Ph.D. in the same group, investigating the synthesis and properties of a novel class of atropisomers. In 2018, Romain started a postdoc in the Feringa lab, working on molecular switches and motors.

Dr. Michael Kathan
Michael studied Chemistry at Freie Universität Berlin and ETH Zurich, where he was involved in research projects on C–F activation and strained aromatic systems in the groups of Prof. Dieter Lentz and Prof. François Diederich. In 2015 he joined the group of Prof. Stefan Hecht as a PhD student, focusing on the control of chemical reactivity and adaptive materials with light. After receiving his PhD (summa cum laude) in 2019, he moved to Groningen to work on molecular motors in the group of Prof. Ben Feringa

Dr. Simon Krause
Simon Krause obtained his BSc. In 2012 at Technische Universität Dresden, Germany. After a 10-month research internship in the group of Martin Schröder at Nottingham University he returned to Dresden and obtained his MSc in 2015 working on flexible metal-organic frameworks. He remained in the group of Stefan Kaskel for his doctorate studies working on a novel phenomenon termed negative gas adsorption. After defending his thesis in early 2019, he joined the Feringa lab as a postdoctoral researcher on a fellowship of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation where he will be working on molecular motors and switches at interfaces.

Dr. Stefano Crespi
Stefano received his Ph.D. in 2017 at the University of Pavia (Italy) working on novel applications of photoinduced aryl cations. He won a two-year fellowship as a Post-Doc in the same University under the supervision of Prof. M. Fagnoni, with whom he studied the properties of novel heteroaryl azo photoswitches. He joined for five months the workgroup of Burkhard König at the University of Regensburg, focusing on the synthesis of new scaffolds based on heteroaryl azo dyes and the theoretical investigation of photocatalytic transformations. In 2019 he moved to Groningen to work on molecular motors in the group of Ben Feringa as a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow.

PhD students

Henrieke Heideman
Henrieke Heideman was born in Zwolle and raised in Wijhe where she lived all throughout high school. After finishing high school she lived in Mexico before she came to Groningen to get her bachelor degrees in Chemistry and in Chemical Engineering. During the master Nanoscience she performed a small research project in the group of Ben Feringa, working on molecular motors. Her final master project was in collaboration with Meike Stöhr where she performed STM studies in UHV. She is currently doing her PhD under the supervision of Prof. dr. Ben L. Feringa working on molecular motors on surfaces. Henrieke will defend her thesis in November 2019.

Brian Corbet
Brian Corbet was born in Hoogeveen (The Netherlands) in 1993. He finished his BSc (2014) and MSc (2017) at the University of Groningen, with research projects in Groningen under supervision by Prof. Ben Feringa into Pd catalysed cross-coupling reactions of lithium reagents and Cu catalysed asymmetric allylic substitution reactions. In 2016 he worked in the group of Prof. Jonathan Clayden at the University of Bristol on lithiated urea rearrangements. Since 2017 he is working to obtain his PhD in the group of Prof. Ben Feringa with research towards the development of new molecular motors.

Wojciech Danowski
Wojtek studied chemistry at the Warsaw Universityof Technology, Poland. He obtained his MSc. in the group of prof. Janusz Lewinski working on new methodologies of functionalization of ZnO quantum dots. He is currently conducting a research focused on photoresponsive surfaces. Wojtek will defend his thesis in September 2019.

Yuchen Wei
Yuchen Wei was born in Chongqing, China in 1989. He received a double BSc degree in physics and chemistry from Nankai University in 2012. He started the Top Master Nanoscience programme at the University of Groningen in 2013 and then joined Prof. Ben L. Feringa's group to work on light-driven molecular motors. Now he stays on in the Feringa group to do his PhD, working on photoresponsive materials based on molecular motors. Yuchen will defend his thesis in September 2019.

Filippo Tosi
Filippo was born in Milan, Italy, in 1991. After pursuing classical studies in high school, he obtained his Bachelor degree in Environmental and Applied Chemistry (2013), and his Master degree Cum Laude in Chemical Sciences at the University of Milan (2015), working on two projects under the supervision of prof. Benaglia. During his Master thesis period, he focused on Chemico-Physical studies on Bronsted Acid activation in Organocatalysis, and the elucidation and proposal of a new reaction mechanism for a nitro-compound reduction developed in prof. Benaglia's laboratories, combining aspects of synthesis, catalysis, NMR spectroscopy and Computational methods.He had the possibility to study abroad for Erasmus period in Gent (2014), Belgium, joining the Supramolecular Chemistry Group on a project centred on the Chemico-Physical study of the double thermo-responsive behaviour of PDMAEMA polymer driven by electrostatic interactions, under the supervision of prof. Hoogenboom.In November 2015 he is going to begin a PhD project in Groningen, under the supervision of prof. Feringa, focusing on Self-Assembled Catalysis in Confined Space. Filippo will defend his thesis in December 2019.

Dusan Kolarski
Dusan Kolarski was born in Pancevo, Serbia. He started seeing the world through the eyes of Chemistry during his high school projects in Petnica Science Center. He studied Chemistry and obtained his BSc degree at the University of Belgrade. During his bachelor studies, he conducted summer research at the University of Houston (Prof. Ognjen S. Miljanic), working on Dynamic Combinatorial Libraries and Covalent Organic Frameworks. Dusan pursued his MSc studies at ETH Zurich in Switzerland, where he worked on redox-switchable cavitands and water-soluble molecular baskets (Prof. François Diederich). As a master student he also did an internship at Novartis Institute for BioMedical Research in Basel, Switzerland. Afterwards, he worked as a research and teaching assistant at the Faculty of Chemistry in Belgrade (Prof. Radomir N. Saicic), doing total synthesis and developing new gold(I)-catalyzed cascade reactions. Currently, he is pursuing his PhD in the field of Photopharmacology under the supervison of Prof. Ben L. Feringa.

Jana Volarić
Jana Volarić was born in Zagreb, Croatia in 1992. After regular participations in Croatian national chemistry competitions she started studying chemistry in Zagreb. During the BSc at the University of Zagreb she worked on solid-state reactions of p-nitrosobenzene compounds (prof. Hrvoj Vančik, University of Zagreb). After finishing the BSc she did an Erasmus internship in Groningen and joined the group of prof. Ben Feringa. The topic of the internship was synthesis and testing the catalytic ability of a bisthiourea organocatalyst. After the internship she returned to Groningen to start her MSc at the University of Groningen and joined the motor group to work on her master research project. In June '17 Jana started as a PhD student in the Feringa Group.

Marco Wonink
Marco was born in Zwolle, the Netherlands, and obtained his BSc. in Chemistry and in Chemical Engineering at the University of Groningen. He then received his MSc. in Chemistry working under the supervision of Dr. Otten on the catalytic activation and reduction of CO2 at the University of Groningen. His MSc. in Chemical Engineering was also obtained at the University of Groningen with a stay at MIT in the group of Prof. Román-Leshkov working on the catalytic upgrading of biomass. He is currently pursuing his PhD in Chemistry under the supervision of Prof. Feringa working on organic electrosynthesis.

Piermichele Kobauri
Piermichele Kobauri was born in Turin, Italy in 1991. He received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. degree in Chemistry from the University of Turin. His Master research project in the group of Prof. Marco Lolli focused on in silico drug design methodologies, namely pharmacophore modeling and docking. He went back to the lab as a research intern in the same group, designing and synthesizing compounds to target Leishmaniasis. Subsequently, he did an Erasmus+ internship in the group of Prof. Bente Frølund at the University of Copenhagen, working on the synthesis of GABA analogues. In March 2017 he started his Ph.D. under the guidance of Prof. Ben Feringa at the University of Groningen. He is currently working on a photopharmacology and structure-based approach to smart antibiotics.

Anirban Mondal
Anirban Mondal was born in Kolkata (India). He received his B.Sc. degree in Chemistry from Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda Centenary College, Kolkata and Master of Science from Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (Mumbai) in the group of Prof. Debabrata Maiti and Prof. Rodney A. Fernandes . His master research focused on the ‘Directing group assisted meta and para-C−H Functionalization of arenes by a different template-based assembly’ and ‘Total Synthesis of antitumor drug Asteriscunolide’. Currently, he is working as a Ph.D. student in the group of Prof. Dr. Ben Feringa in the research field of molecular switches and motors.​

Hugo Helbert
I was born in Nantes, France in 1994. I studied organic chemistry in France and obtained my Engineering degree in 2016 from the E.N.S.C. of Clermont-Ferrand with a specialization in medicinal chemistry. While my studies I did research projects at the University of Durham, UK and at the University of Copenhagen, DK on catalysis and medicinal chemistry. I did my master research at Bayer pharmaceuticals in Wuppertal, Germany. I joined the group of Prof. Feringa in 2016 for a PhD in collaboration with the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) on synthesis of new PET tracers.

Tobias van den Enk
Tobias was born in 1992 in Zaanstad, The Netherlands. He obtained his BSc under supervision of prof. Jan van Maarseveen on peptide-cyclization reactions in a self-assembled confined space, and his MSc under supervision of Prof. Henk Hiemstra, on the topic of [2+2] photocycloadditions, both at the University of Amsterdam. In 2017 he started his PhD research in the group of prof. Feringa, working on photoactuation of chiral nanomaterials

Mark Hoorens
Mark obtained his BSc in Life Science and Technology at Leiden University and University of Technology Delft. In 2013 he started his master Life Science and Technology at Leiden University, where he conducted his Master's Thesis in the group of Dr. Mario van der Stelt. Currently he is pursuing his PhD in the group of Dr. Wiktor Szymanski (http://szymanski-lab.com/) at the Department of Radiology at the University Medical Center Groningen in strong collaboration with the group of Prof. Ben Feringa. Mark is focussing on the design, synthesis and evaluation of new photopharmacological agents, to ultimately enable highly localized cancer treatment

Friederike Reessing
Friederike, born in Bremen, studied Pharmacy at the CAU Kiel and the University of Salamanca. In 2014 she received her diploma (equivalent to MSc) in Kiel and then came to Groningen for an internship in the group of Dr. Anna Hirsch working on the structure based design of modulators of thiamine transport. After obtaining her licensure as a pharmacist in August 2015, she is now pursuing her PhD in the group of Dr. W. Szymanski focussing on the development molecular solutions of targeted Magnetic Resonance Imaging and intraoperative imaging.

Shaoyu Chen
Shaoyu Chen was born in Shantou, China. She obtained her BSc in Textile Chemistry at Jiangnan University in 2013. Afterwards, she continued her master and doctor study in Jiangnan University under the supervision of Prof. Chaoxia Wang in the field of smart photo-responsive materials. In October 2017, she joined Prof. Feringa’s group as a Ph.D student. Her main research interests are synthesis and application of photo-responsive materials

Fan Xu
Fan Xu was born in Jiangxi, China. After obtained her Bachelor degree at Zhengzhou University in 2014, she started the Master study at the same university working on Ring-opening metathesis polymerization and its application in biomaterials. In 2017, she joined Prof. Ben L. Feringa's group as a Ph.D student. Her main research interest is photoresponsive supramolecular materials based on molecular motors.

Cosima Stähler
Cosima was born in Berlin. After volunteering for a year after school in Germany and South Africa, she started studying Chemistry at the Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel, where she was working in the group of Rainer Herges on diazocine switches. Additionally she completed an internship in the group of Francesca Kerton in St. John’s in Canada, working on the use of renewable materials and at Kyoto University, working in the group of Atsuhiro Osuka on porphyrins as a platform for stable radicals. To pursue a PhD, she joined the group of Ben Feringa in March 2018 to work on the application of molecular motors in smart materials.

Sven van Vliet
Sven van Vliet was born in Groningen in 1993. He was raised in Hoogezand-Sappemeer, a village near Groningen. In 2014, he received his BSc degree working on the synthesis of water soluble molecular motors. Hereafter, he stayed in the Feringa group to work on his masterproject about imine-based molecular motors. Subsequently he performed a short internship under the supervision of prof. Pablo Ballester at the ICIQ in Tarragona, working on self-assembled nanoreactors. Hereafter, he returned to Groningen and the Feringa group to pursue a PhD. Currently, he is working on nanoscale energy converters.

George Hermens
George Hermens was born in Groningen in 1994. He was raised in Groningen and after high school he started studying Chemistry at the RuG in 2012. In 2015, he joined the bio-subgroup of Prof. Feringa and he received his BSc degree working on the synthesis and characterization of photoswitchable autoinducers. In his Master Chemistry, he returned to Prof. Feringa and joined the Smart Materials subgroup, working on photoswitchable chiral gels. Subsequently he performed a research project at Shell Technology Centre Amsterdam under the supervision of Dr. Peter Klusener, working on the quantification of unknown peroxide mixtures using luminol. In June 2018 he received his MSc degree and rejoined the Feringa group to pursue his PhD, working on biobased coatings and polymers.

Daisy Pooler
Daisy was born in Birmingham, UK in 1996. She obtained her MChem degree under supervision of Prof. David Leigh at the University of Manchester, UK working towards synthesis of a fueled molecular walker. During her degree, Daisy spent one year working with Domino Printing Sciences (Cambridge, UK) on development of a food-grade blue ink for eggshell coding. In 2018, Daisy began her PhD research in the group of Prof. Ben Feringa at the University of Groningen in the field of molecular motors.

Jinyu Sheng
Jinyu was born in Zhejiang (China). He received his BSc degree in Chemistry from Ocean University of China in 2014. He then started his Master studies in organic synthesis methodology at Tsinghua University under the guidance of Prof. Chao Chen. After his graduation in 2017, he continued working as a research assistant for one year. In October 2018, he joined the Prof. Ben L. Feringa's group to work on designing of light-switchable catalyst and anion binding receptors.

Albert Schulte
Albert was born in Peize, the Netherlands in 1994. He obtained his BSc degree at the University of Groningen in 2016, working on enzyme engineering. During his masters he performed an internship in the group of prof. Anna Hirsch at the Helmholtz Institute for Pharmaceutical Research in Saarbrücken. He obtained his MSc degree in 2018 working in the field of photopharmacology. In March 2019 he began his PhD research in the group of Prof. Feringa working on the photocontrol of various biological processes.

Vanda Daskova
Vanda was born in Ceske Budejovice (Czech Republic) in 1993. She received her undergraduate degree from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich (LMU). During her studies, she did research projects in the group of Prof. D. Trauner (LMU) and the group of Prof. K. Christe (USC) working on the total synthesis of Lycopladine A and on the synthesis of high-energy-density materials, respectively. She completed her Master thesis under the supervision of Prof. B. List at Max-Planck-Institut für Kohlenforschung in Mülheim a. d. Ruhr (Germany) working on the asymmetric Mukaiyama−Michael reaction. Subsequently, she did an internship at Bayer pharmaceuticals located in Wuppertal (Germany). In April 2019, Vanda joined the Feringa group for a PhD in the field of asymmetric catalysis. Her research focuses on self-amplifying systems and the origin of life.

Youxin Fu
Youxin Fu was born in Anhui (China). He received his BSc degree in Applied Chemistry (Fine Chemical) from East China University of Science and Technology (ECUST) in 2014. He then started his Master studies in Fine Synthetic Chemistry and Molecular Engineering at same university under the guidance of Prof. Xiaopeng He and Dr. Junji Zhang in the field of photoswitchable fluorescence probe. After his graduation in 2017, he continued working as a research assistant in ECUST and The University of Queensland for one year. In January 2019, he joined the Prof. Ben L. Feringa's group to work on photoclick reaction and smart probe.

Bianka Sieredzinska
Bianka was born in Pulawy, Poland. She studied Chemistry and Education at University of Warsaw, Poland. She was really interested in science popularization which lead her to take part in many university events and also pushed her to do an internship at school and teach some chemistry to young and bright students. Bianka obtained her MSc in 2019 and during her master studies she was working on in-lab validation of retrosynthesis software Chematica (now: Synthia) at the Institute of Organic Chemistry PAS in prof. Bartosz Grzybowski group. Bianka took part in syntheses of drugs, drug metabolites and a natural product that were predicted by above mentioned retrosynthetic tool (Chematica). Bianka started her PhD in the group in June 2019. She is a member of catalysis subgroup and is working on new reactions and cross-linking in water/photoactivation.

Master students

Carlijn van Beek
Carlijn was born in Deventer, the Netherlands in 1997. She studies Chemistry at the University of Groningen. During her BSc degree, she performed an extracurricular research internship focused on molecular motors in the group of Prof. Ben Feringa. She obtained her BSc degree in 2018 (summa cum laude), working on surface-immobilised molecular motors. In August 2019, Carlijn will return to the Feringa group and start her Master research project.

Paco Visser
Paco Visser was born in Meppel (The Netherlands) in 1995. He obtained his BSc degree in Chemical Engineering in 2017, after which he worked on Pd-catalysed, Li-mediated cross-coupling reactions under supervision of prof. Ben Feringa to obtain his BSc degree in Chemistry during the same year. After an extracurricular research period in the asymmetric catalysis subgroup, he performed a research project at Nouryon Deventer under supervision of Dr. Bjorn ter Horst and Dr. Michel van der Berg as a part of his MSc degree. In March 2019, Paco returned to the Feringa group to work on total synthesis and the cross-coupling of organolithium reagents under supervision of Dr. Jeffrey Buter.

Thomas Freese
Thomas was born in Sögel, Germany in 1991. From 2011-2014 he worked at the Remmers Group in Löningen, Germany and became a Chemical Technician, where he focused on different types of coatings (water based, organic based and polymers for wood/floor/furniture) and treatments for restoration and construction of buildings. After that he studied Chemistry at the Georg-August-University in Göttingen. During his BSc degree, he worked in the group of Prof. Dr. D. Stalke on the Synthesis of novel N-heterocyclic silylenes for catalytic applications. In 2017 he began his MSc degree at the University of Göttingen and came to the University of Groningen in 2018 to finish his MSc as an exchange student. He focused on a joint research project between the Feringa group and the Barta group. Thomas has started his Master research project in July 2019.