THE BOERSMA LAB

Welcome to the website of the Arnold Boersma Lab. We are embedded within the DWI-Leibniz Institute for Interactive Materials, in Aachen, Germany. 

We will join the Cellular Protein Chemistry section at the Bijvoet Centre for Biomolecular Research at Utrecht University in The Netherlands in the summer of 2022. We will remain associated with the DWI-Leibniz Institute after that!

The Boersma group works in the area of biochemistry, biophysics, chemical biology, and microfluidics.

We engineer proteins, small molecules, and larger cell-like systems for fundamental biological understanding. Our special interest is in sensing and reconstructing intracellular biochemical organization. The biochemical organization includes concepts such as macromolecular crowding and protein self-organization. Questions that we look to answer are, for example, how biochemical organization is perturbed, what are the fundamental mechanisms that allow changes in organization, and what does this mean for the cell?

Eventually, we aim to apply both our technologies and understanding to applications as medical tools (diagnosis, drug screening).


The group has a strong record of accomplishment in the design of FRET-based protein probes for macromolecular crowding in diverse living and nonliving systems, probes for ionic strength in cells (see left), and probes to determine protein self-organization.

Our research is made possible by funding from the ERC, NWO, DFG, and the Leibniz association 

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