Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS)
Faculty of Science, University of Amsterdam
Science Park 904 (room C3.106)
(Note new room number)
Cellular structures are built-up and modified by proteins. Besides their specific functions in metabolic processes, proteins also interact with each other and with other macromolecules present in the crowded cell in a non-specific way through thermal motion. These so-called excluded-volume interactions are determined by physical rules and can lead to self-assemblies, phase separations and self-organization. I am interested in how these physico-chemical rules contribute to and modulate the functioning and activity of specific proteins (polymerases, topoisomerses, translocases) involved in segregation and shape determination.
Laboratory protocol for the isolation of nucleoids from E. coli spheroplasts. See:
Considering its scale, the small bacterium may serve as a
model system for understanding physical and structural
principles underlying the self-organization of macromolecules
in micro-compartments such as the eukaryotic chromosome. For
instance, bacterial DNA segregation should be compared with the
first step of eukaryotic segregation, the dissolution or
disentanglement of the chromatids, rather than with the second
step, the mitotic condensation, proteolysis and microtubular
transport of the chromatids.
For a further discussion see Syllabus "The Bacterial Cell Cycle" . See for cytological aspects of the cell cycle Section 2.1.
I was born in 1940 in Batavia (Indonesia). After two years primary school in Switzerland, I finished school in Hilversum, studied biology at the University of Amsterdam (MSc. 1968) and got my PhD at the Laboratory for Electron Microscopy in 1974. Apart from a short term visit to Israel in 1974 and a sabbatical leave at the University of Texas at Austin in 1982, I remained associated with the University of Amsterdam, from where I had to retire in 2005.
For my retirement in 2005 colleagues and friends contributed to "A microscope for Salatiga". We finally brought the microscope in October 2008 to the University of Salatiga. See link below for a blog-report of that journey.