Students' seminar

The MPGC students`seminar is mandatory for MPGC students.

During the seminar students present in a common way the latest results of their interdisciplinary research and talk to each other. These presentations offer excellent opportunities for feedback on scientific results and presentation techniques and for informal discussions and networking.
Winter 2021/2022
Regular MPGC students' seminars in the winter term 2021/2022 will take place Wednesday at 4pm as online seminar

The first broadly applicable and sustainable electrochemical synthesis of N,N’ disubstituted indazolin-3-ones by direct intramolecular anodic dehydrogenative N-N coupling reaction is presented. This method features mild reaction conditions, an easy experimental setup, sustainable and inexpensive electrode materials and a low supporting electrolyte concentration, providing access to various indazolin-3-one derivatives in good yields up to 78%. The reaction conditions were optimized applying the statistics-based method Design of Experiments (DoE) and the excellent scalability of the reaction was demonstrated. Additionally, cyclic voltammetry experiments were conducted to get insights into the reaction mechanism. Indazolin-3-ones represent an important class of N-heterocycles due to their broad range of biological activity, such as anti-inflammatory, anticancer and antichagasic properties. However, conventional indazolin-3-one syntheses often involve harsh reaction conditions, the use of toxic reagents in stoichiometric amounts or transition metal catalysts, leading to large amounts of reagent waste, high costs and safety hazards. In contrast, electro-organic chemistry has proven to provide a sustainable and broadly applicable synthetic tool for the synthesis of various N-heterocycles. By applying current as a traceless oxidant, reagent waste can be diminished, work safety increased and costs lowered. [more]
Transporting therapeutic molecules to their target site in the human body is crucial for the development of successful treatments. Currently, nanoparticles are on the rise as carriers for therapeutic molecules as they protect and guide their payload in the human body. The most prominent examples of this are the highly effective vaccines against COVID-19 from Biontech/Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Moderna. Here, therapeutic mRNA molecules are protected by lipid droplets. Nature itself uses lipid droplets for cell-to-cell communication in the human body. These lipid droplets are called exosomes and transport biomolecular payloads such as mRNA and protein. Due to their designation for payload transport, exosomes have recently come into focus as natural drug carrying nanoparticles. In my PhD, I want to combine the natural drug delivery properties of exosomes with the engineering precision of synthetic nanocapsules. Therefore, I aim to envelope synthetic nanocapsules with the functional membrane of exosomes to create hybrid nanoparticles for drug delivery. [more]

Chuchu Chen: tba

Adriana Ender: tba

During the last years, ion channels have emerged as key host cell factors for a great number of viral infections and are even discussed as therapeutic targets against infectious diseases. Ion channels are involved in almost all aspects of life. One ion channel family playing a crucial role in the sensory physiology of various organisms is the Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) superfamily. These exclusively eukaryotic cation channels are polymodal; they are regulated by a variety of stimuli including lipids, ions, other proteins, temperature, pH, etc. One member of the TRP superfamily is TRPML2 which was recently revealed to enhance the infectivity of certain endocytosed viruses such as Zika, Dengue and West Nile virus. However, the molecular details of this enhancement remain elusive and need further investigation. [more]

Winald Kitzmann: tba

Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) is a powerful technique to probe surface information in the sub-micrometer length scales. Unlike an SEM, AFM can image most samples under ambient conditions without the need of vacuum or cryo conditions. In my talk, I will summarize the different ways in which AFM can be utilized to obtain a variety of information such as surface topography, mechanical properties, adhesion, etc. Finally I will introduce my work, where we developed a method to measure surface tension of microdroplets using AFM, which is otherwise not possible using conventional methods designed for bulk liquids. [more]

Johannes Strunk: tba

Ryan Vella: tba

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