About us

We are a consortium of reach labs from The University of Bologna, Italy; The University of Edinburgh, UK; The Free University of Berlin, Germany; The Complutense University of Madrid, Spain; The University of Helsinki, Finland; Jagiellonian University, Poland; KU Leuven, Belgium. The team has wide expertise to support our goals of building future biological nanomachines. These include in silico modeling, therapeutic cargo development, DNA nanotechnology, protein design, production and in cell/in vivo testing.

Our team

Jonathan Heddle

Jonathan Heddle

Professor, Malopolska Centre of Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University

Jonathan Heddle is the leader of the Bionanoscience and Biochemistry Laboratory. He is interested with combining molecular biology, structural biology and biophysics with diverse areas of science (chemistry, mathematics, physics) with the ultimate aim of building intelligent nanomachines which will have multiple applications notably in human health.

Stephan Block

Group Leader, Institute of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Freie Universität Berlin

Our research centers on the development and application of biophysical and physicochemical methods, which allow to characterize the properties of macromolecules (polyelectrolytes and proteins) as well as of bionanoparticles (liposomes/lipid nanoparticles, viruses, bacteria). In particular, we develop methods to accurately quantify protein functionalities, such as enzymatic activity, and binding properties of complex interactions, such as multivalent interactions generated by infectious agents. Most of our methods rely on a combination of advanced microscopic approaches (such as total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy or single-molecule localization microscopy) with microfluidics and/or sophisticated data analysis schemes, enabling for high data throughput while keeping single-molecule/single-particle resolution.

Arnout Voet

Arnout Voet

Associate professor at the KU Leuven Department of Chemistry

In our laboratory we focus on the usage biomolecular modelling methods to study biochemical processes with an explicit focus on the application of computational methods in computer aided drug design as well as computational protein design. In drug design are we especially interested in novel targest to identify first in class compounds. Our designer proteins are used to study evolution, engineer enzymes for green catalysis and bionanotechnology. Next to the computational experiments we also perfom the validatory biophysical “wet-lab” experiments and protein crystallography in house.

Alvaro Martínez Del Pozo

Álvaro Martínez-del-Pozo

Full Professor of Biochemistry, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Chemistry, Complutense University at Madrid, Spain

Working towards understanding how some toxic water-soluble proteins can interact with lipid membranes. Using this information to try to build useful and environmentally sustainable biotechnological tools, such as specific insecticidal agents, plastic-degrading enzymes or therapeutic or diagnostic molecules. Dedicated teacher. Very keen on sports, practicing running, swimming, cycling, and alpine skiing.

Katherine Dunn

Katherine Dunn

Senior Lecturer in School of Engineering at University of Edinburgh.

My research involves re-engineering biological molecules and using them as building blocks in new technologies. Current projects are aimed at developing new bio-inspired paradigms for net zero electricity generation and energy storage, life-saving diagnostics, and ground-breaking tools for synthetic biology.

Timo Laaksonen

Timo Laaksonen has experience on physical chemistry and pharmaceutical technology, and has applied novel biomaterials such as nanocellulose in pharmaceutical applications. Recent work has concentrated on biophotonics, in particular on the use of light-triggered reactions for drug release. He currently working in GeneCellNano (Academy of Finland Flagship project) and holds a prestigious ERC Consolidator Grant (PADRE, 2021-2026

Giampaolo Zuccheri

Giampaolo Zuccheri

Department of Pharmacy and Biotechnology at the University of Bologna

We are interested in the characterization of nanosystems with microscopy technique, especially atomic force microscopy, and in the design of nanostructures that can interact with live cells. We also exploit nanostructures and self-assembly towards the development of biosensors.

Thomas Sharp

Thomas Sharp

Leiden University Medical Center

My lab focusses on developing synthetic biological applications to understand and exploit the human innate immune system. We use DNA nanotechnology to build and control antigen nanopatterns to determine structure-function relationships required for immune system activation. We also use cryoEM to perform structural biology of immune system complexes, which we also combine with super-resolution light microscopy performed on cryogenic samples to achieve high-accuracy localization of tagged proteins within samples prepared for cryoEM. This will allow us to perform structural biology on individual proteins within cells.