Johan Pijnenborg

Foto website (1)


I obtained my bachelor and master’s degree in chemistry from the Radboud University Nijmegen. During my bachelor internship I learned about carbohydrate chemistry in the Boltje research group and I became immediately intrigued by this field of research. During my masters I worked for over a year on sialic acid derivatives, a carbohydrate that is abundantly present on the outer cell membrane with vital functions in both health and disease [1,2]. Then I expanded my knowledge and skills in glycobiology in the group of prof. Carolyn Bertozzi at Stanford University for 5 months where I worked on antibody-sialidase conjugates. In January 2018 I started my PhD in the Boltje research group. Here I am working on new chemical tools for the study and perturbation of carbohydrate processing enzymes. Using these tools I hope to expand our knowledge in the field of glycobiology while also developing new potential therapeutics in cancer.

  1. Steering Siglec–Sialic Acid Interactions on Living Cells using Bioorthogonal Chemistry, C. Büll, T. Heise, N. van Hilten, J.F.A. Pijnenborg, V.R.L.J. Bloemendal, L. Gerrits, E.D. Kers-Rebel, T. Ritschel, M.H. den Brok, G.J. Adema, T.J. Boltje, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 201756, 3309.
  2. Potent Metabolic Sialylation Inhibitors Based on C-5-Modified Fluorinated Sialic Acids, T. Heise*, J. F. A. Pijnenborg*, C. Büll, N. van Hilten, E.D. Kers-Rebel, N. Balneger, H. Elferink, G.J. Adema, T.J. Boltje, J. Med. Chem. 2019, 62, 2, 1014-1021. *Co-first authorship