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Johan R. C. van der Maarel

Associate Professor in Biophysics
Department of Physics
Faculty of Science
National University of Singapore (NUS)

MSc (cum laude, 1984) and PhD (1987), Faculty of Science, Leiden University
Lecturer, Leiden University (1987-2004)
Director Magnetic Resonance Imaging Laboratory, Leiden University (2002-2004)
Visiting Associate Professor, University of Minnesota (1998)

My Inspiration

As a little boy, I always disassembled my toys in order to find out how they work. This obsession has involved into my passion to understand biological systems. How can living matter be organized and structured to such a high extent and, yet, be so dynamic with a cycle time of an hour or less? The answer to this apparent paradox would not only be of great value for our perception of life, but would also have practical implications for nano- and biotechnology. The laws of physics have proven to be valuable for the description of our material world. Do they also tell us how the interactions of macromolecules gives rise to life? I don't know, but it is great fun trying to find it out.

Selected Publications

  • Macromolecular Crowding Induced Elongation and Compaction of Single DNA Molecules Confined in a Nanochannel
    C. Zhang, P.G. Shao, J.A. van Kan, and J.R.C. van der Maarel
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Early Edition (2009), DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0904741106

  • Molecular Dynamics Simulation of Multivalent Ion Mediated Attraction between DNA Molecules
    L. Dai, Y. Mu, L. Nordenskiƶld, and J.R.C. van der Maarel
    Physical Review Letters 100, 118310 (2008), DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.100.118301

  • Plasmid DNA Encapsulation within Cationic Diblock Copolymer Vesicles for Gene Delivery
    A.V. Korobko, C. Backendorf, and J.R.C. van der Maarel
    The Journal of Physical Chemistry B 110, 14550-14556 (2006), DOI: 10.1021/jp057363b

  • Do Spherical Polyelectrolyte Brushes Interdigitate?
    A.V. Korobko, W. Jesse, S.U. Egelhaaf, A. Lapp, and J.R.C. van der Maarel
    Physical Review Letters 93, 177801 (2004), DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.93.177801

  • Extremely Slow Counterion Dynamics in Xanthan Liquid Crystal through 23Na and 14N NMR
    J.R.C. van der Maarel, D.E. Woessner, and M.E. Merritt
    The Journal of Physical Chemistry B 106, 3864-3871 (2002), DOI: 10.1021/jp014277c

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Department of Physics, National University of Singapore, 2 Science Drive 3, Singapore 117542

E-mail: phyjrcvd AT

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