Bert Meijer awarded second honorary degree by leading university

July 30, 2019

With the distinction the Freie Universität Berlin honours the outstanding quality of Meijer's scientific work.

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Professor Bert Meijer. Photo: Elodie Burrillon.

Distinguished TU/e professor Bert Meijer has been awarded an honorary degree by the Freie Universität Berlin. With the distinction the faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Medicine of the leading German university honours the excellent quality of Meijers scientific work. The award is the second honoris causa degree for the organic chemist. He earlier received a similar distinction from the University of Mons in Belgium.

Bert Meijer is considered one of the world’s leading scientists in the field of supramolecular chemisty and polymers, according to a statement by the Freie Universität. He is also lauded for his work on the so-called dendritic box, which is seen as the first example of a unimolecular nanocarrier, which can release its load (e.g. drugs) triggered by external stimuli.

Meijer feels honoured by the award. “Freie Universität Berlin is a leading university, and very strong in organic chemistry. Over the last eight years they have honoured two other chemists: George Whitesides of Harvard and Caroly Bertozzi of Stanford, both absolute world class scientists. It’s a great honour to be now listed among them”.

Supramolecular polymers

Throughout his career, Bert Meijer has explored and developed a new class of materials, the so-called ‘supramolecular polymers’. Supramolecular polymers have complex architectures made of basic building blocks (monomeric units) which can self-assemble into long supramolecular polymeric chains, resulting in materials displaying unique dynamic properties.

Current research of prof.  Meijer lab focuses on understanding this assembly behavior into supramolecular polymers. These insights are used to explore the potential use of supramolecular polymers as mimics of biological tissue, with possible applications in the field of regenerative medicine. In his research, Meijer has worked closely with the Research Center of Electron Microscopy at the Freie Universität.

Meijer will receive his honorary degree during the International Symposium on Polyvalence in Chemistry and Biology on September 30th at the Freie Universität.

Career

After his promotion in 1982 at the University of Groningen under supervision of Prof. Hans Wijnberg, Bert Meijer worked for Philips and DSM. In 1991 he was installed as full professor of Organic Chemistry at the department for Chemical Engineering and Chemistry at the TU/e. He founded the TU/e Institute for Complex Molecular Systems in 2008. In 2014 Bert Meijer was inducted as Academy Professor of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2001 he received the Spinoza Prize, followed by many other international awards, including the highly prestigious  Nagoya Gold Medal in in 2017.

 

Media contact

Henk van Appeven
(Science Information Officer)