Universiteit Leiden

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Marcellus Ubbink

Professor of Protein chemistry / director of education

Prof.dr. M. Ubbink
+31 71 527 4628

Marcellus Ubbink studies dynamic protein-proteins and protein-ligand complexes, with a particular interest in the dynamic complexes of redox enzymes. He uses a range of biophysical techniques for this purpose.

More information about Marcellus Ubbink

Curriculum Vitae

Personal information

Nationality:   Dutch
Date of birth:   26 October 1965


1994   PhD, Leiden Institute of Chemistry, Leiden University, The Netherlands, 19 May 1994 (cum laude)
Thesis title: ‘Cytochrome c-550 and the MADH redox chain from Thiobacillus versutus’
Advisor: Prof. Dr. G.W. Canters
1989   MSc in Biology, Faculty of Biology, Utrecht University, The Netherlands (cum laude)

Current and previous research positions

2010 – now     Full professor in Protein Chemistry, Leiden, Institute of Chemistry, Leiden University
2004 – 2010   Associate Professor, Leiden Institute of Chemistry, Leiden University, The Netherlands
1997 – 2003   Assistant Professor, Leiden Institute of Chemistry, Leiden University,
1994 – 1997   Postdoctoral Research Associate at Dept. Biochemistry, Cambridge University (UK)
1994   Postdoctoral project (six months) at the laboratories of Dr. A. Pastore (EMBL, Heidelberg, Germany) and Dr. J. van der Oost (VU University, Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

Grants, awards, recognitions since 2010

2016   NWO-CW ECHO grant (k€ 260)
2014   NWO-CW KIEM project (k€ 19)
2013   NWO-CW ECHO grant (k€ 260)
2013   NWO NMARRS Graduate School programme with H.J.M. de Groot (k€ 200)
2012   NWO Groot for Paramagnetic NMR Facility (k€ 2,163)
2012   EU Marie Curie ITN “paramagnetic NMR (pNMR)”, (co-applicant k€ 244)
2012   ESF funding International Conference on Molecular Aspects of Protein-Protein Interactions (k€ 30)
2012   Co-applicant of the grant for an ultra-high field NMR facility for the Netherlands (uNMR-NL) from the National Roadmap Program for Large Research Infrastructures (k€ 18,500)
2010   Collaboration with the company Crucell (k€ 310)
2010   Visiting professor at the Ecole Normale Supérieure, Lyon, France (April 2010)
2010   NWO “Middelgroot” grant for upgrade of the 600 MHz NMR spectrometer (k€ 263)

Contribution to teaching and supervision

Current: Undergraduate course Biochemistry 1 for 1st years students Biopharmaceutical Sciences and Life Science and Technology (>400 students). Graduate courses Biomolecular Structures (with Dr. Pannu and Prof. van Heel) and Science Methodology (with Dr. Gijsbers). Lectures for primary school pupils in the Junior Science Lab outreach facility. Workshops on Scientific Integrity for PhD students. Lectures for ‘proefstuderen’ Life Science and Technology (for secondary school pupils to get acquainted with the study). Several guest lectures. PhD course “bioNMR” within the Netherlands Magnetic Resonance Research School (with Dr. van Ingen).
2010-2014: Graduate course Biophysics of Protein and Protein Interactions.
2008-2013: Graduate Course on NMR Spectroscopy.

Supervision as promotor: 13 PhD students (2010-2016), as co-promotor: 10 PhD students (1998-2010). Participated in 24 thesis and/or opposition committees. Hosted 8 post-docs (1998-2016) with 2 Venis, 1 Marie Curie fellow and 1 fellow of the Danish Research Council. Current employment of recent PhD students: H.E. Lindfors, Scientist at DSM Biotechnology company; Q. Bashir, assistant professor, University of the Punjab, Pakistan; B. Somireddy, postdoc at Northwestern University, IL; J.Y. Guan, senior researcher at Katerva company, Grenoble; S. Scanu, postdoc at the Technical University München; C.J.A. Farenc, postdoc at Monash University, Melbourne; Y. Hiruma, Veni post-doc at the Netherlands Cancer Institute; D.M. Shah, scientist at ZoBio company; W.M. Liu, assistant professor at the Fu Jen Catholic University, Taiwan; D. Chen, Research scientist at ZoBio company; S.P. Skinner, post-doc at the University of Leeds; J.T. Schilder, diving instructor, Bonaire.

Other responsibilities since 2010

  • Editorial Board member for Emerging Topics in Life Sciences (since 2016)
  • Secretary of the Netherlands Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (NVBMB, 2008-2012)
  • Board member of the Netherlands Magnetic Resonance Research School (since 2015)
  • Member, Secretary and Chair of the board of the NWO Proteins Study Group (2013-2015)
  • Chair of the organising committee for the Lorentz Workshop ‘Proteins and Beyond’, Leiden (2014)
  • Member of the scientific committee of the 2nd and 3rd International Conference on Molecular Aspects of Protein-Protein Interactions (2007, 2010)
  • Chair of the 4th IC on Molecular Aspects of Protein-Protein Interactions, Poland (2012)
  • Chair of the ESF-EMAR workshop “Paramagnetic tagging in NMR”, Spain (2010)
  • Member of the organising committee of the FEBS workshops Trends in Transient Interactions between Biological Macromolecules (2005, 2007, 2010)
  • Representative of the Faculty in the Program Board of the Medical Delta Organisation (2012-2016)
  • Organiser of the Annual Institute’s Research Symposium (with Prof. Koper, since 2011)
  • Member (since 2010) and chair (since 2014) C.J. Kok committee to select best Science thesis within the Faculty
  • Member of the Faculty Council (since 2011)

Publication record including five recent representative publications

Ca. 140 papers with >5000 citations, H-index 41 (Google Scholar)

Full publication record: ResearcherID, or Leiden University

  • Skinner S.P., Liu W.-M., Hiruma Y., Timmer M., Blok A., Hass M.A.S., Ubbink M., Delicate conformational balance of the redox enzyme cytochrome P450cam. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2015, 112, 9022-9027.
  • Hiruma Y., Sacristan C., Pachis S.T., Adamopoulos A., Kuijt T., Ubbink M., Castelmur E. von, Perrakis A., Kops G.J.P.L., Competition between MPSI and microtubules at kinetochores regulates spindle checkpoint signalling. Science, 2015, 348, 1264-1267.
  • Hiruma Y., Hass M.A.S., Kikui Y., Liu W.-M., Ölmez B., Skinner S.P., Blok A., Kloosterman A., Koteishi H., Löhr F., Schwalbe H., Nojiri M., Ubbink M., The structure of the cytochrome P450cam-putidaredoxin complex determined by paramagnetic NMR spectroscopy and crystallography. J. Mol. Biol. 2013, 425, 4353-4365.
  • Meschi F., Wiertz F., Klauss L., Blok A., Ludwig B., Merli A., Heering H.A., Rossi G.L., Ubbink M., Efficient electron transfer in a protein network lacking specific interactions. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011, 133, 16861-16867.
  • Bashir Q., Volkov A.N., Ullmann G.M., Ubbink M., Visualisation of the encounter state of the transient electron transfer complex of cytochrome c and cytochrome c peroxidase. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010, 132, 241-247.

Presentations including five presentations at international conferences since 2010

32 invited presentations at universities, companies and institutes since 2010

2015 Lecture at the 250th ACS National Meeting, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
2015 Lecture at EUROMAR 2015, July 5-10, Prague, Czech Republic
2013 Lecture at the 18th International Conference on Cytochrome P450, Seattle, WA, USA2011 Keynote lecture at the Swedish structural biology network (SBNet) meeting Tällberg, Sweden
2011 Lecture at the Keystone Symposium on “Frontiers of NMR Biology”, Big Sky, Montana, USA
2010 Keynote lecture at the Danish NMR Symposium, May 28, Copenhagen, Denmark

Professor of Protein chemistry / director of education

  • Science
  • Leiden Institute of Chemistry
  • LIC/Chemical Biology

Work address

Gorlaeus Building
Einsteinweg 55
2333 CC Leiden
Room number EE219



  • Zobio Wetenschappelijk adviseur.
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