Coacervates and Soft Interfaces

Radboud University

Institute for Molecules and Materials

Dr. ir. Evan Spruijt

Associate professor

Physical Organic Chemistry


Manzar Abbas

I am working on the design and synthesis of functional short peptide building blocks, self-assembly, liquid-liquid phase separation, coacervates and synthetic protocell.

Amy Yewdall

I will be harnessing protein-based artificial organelles to control enzymatic reactions within cell-like environments.

PhD students

Alain André

Using a multidisciplinary approach, I am studying protein-based artificial organelles.

Tiemei Lu

I am using multiphase coacervates, temperature-dependent coacervates and polymer capsules as models for artificial organelles or cells.

Wojciech Lipiński

I study liquid-to-solid transition in model coacervate systems to better understand pathological protein aggregation.

Merlijn van Haren

I am investigating how coacervates can grow, replicate, and possibly function as the first generation of cells on Earth.

Iris Smokers

I am investigating replication of genetic information within coacervate protocells to explore their possible role in the origin of life.

Annemiek Slootbeek

I am researching self replicating and growing coacercates. I especially focus on the interactions and reactions with which these coacercates are formed and evolve.

Brent Visser

I am studying how model coacervate systems influence aggregation of proteins related to neurodegenerative disease.

MSc/BSc students

Stijn Jue

Emma Muller

Nienke Helmers

Zhangfan Li

Daan Houwen

Jonathan Hoekstra

Past group members

Jiahua Wang (postdoc 2019-2021): now at The Sixth Affiliated People’s Hospital Shanghai Jiao Tong University
Joep Joosten (postdoc September 2020-July 2021): now in K.M. Bonger’s group, Radboud University

Karina Nakashima (2017-2021): Now a postdoc at University of Groningen in the group of Nathalie Katsonis

Thesis: Chemistry of active coacervate droplets: Liquid droplets as a minimal model of life

Nick Geertjens (October – January 2022)
Thomas Vijverberg (January – July 2021)
Irina Robu (November- July 2021)
Levy Charleston (February – September 2021 )
Jurre van den Oever (February – July 2021)
Christian Thömmes (February – July 2021)
Jesse Lentjes (November 2020 – July 2021)
Gina Boting (April – June 2021)
Brent Visser (November 2019 – July 2020)
Joep de Graaf (April – June 2020)
Irina Robu (February – July 2020, Honours Academy)
Merlijn van Haren (November 2018 – July 2019)
Tim Banning (November 2018 – July 2019)
Aman Urazov (April – June 2019)
Brent Visser (April – June 2019)
Davin Elian (April – June 2019)
Haibin Qian (November  2018 – February 2019)
Yorick van Aalst (May – July 2018)
Jean-Pierre Welters (May – July 2018)
Stijn Verhoeven (Apr – July 2018)
Jochem Baaij (May – August 2017)

Prof. Yaxun Fan (Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 2019 – 2020)

Saurabh Mathur (2018)

Other groups in the department

Our Coacervates and Soft Interfaces group is part of the Department of Physical Organic Chemistry, which includes the Huck group, Korevaar group (Life-like materials) and Velema group (drug resistance).