Hendrik Vondracek

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Dr Hendrik Vondracek is Senior Support Scientist on MIRIAM beamline B22 and his main research activity is focused on the new Nano-IR endstation. Hendrik joined Diamond in 2022 after a Post-Doc experience in the NanoInnovation Lab and at the infrared beamline SISSI at Elettra in Trieste, Italy.

Email: hendrik.vondracek@diamond.ac.uk
Tel: +44 01235 778231

Current Research Interests

Micro- and Nano-IR spectroscopy, Far-IR / THz spectroscopy, Immobilization strategies for biomolecules, Nanoparticle-based assays

My main research interest is the application of synchrotron radiation in IR micro- and nanospectroscopy.

In particular, I am interested in the characterization of biological systems and the IR-based improvement of biofunctionalization strategies. Using IR microspectroscopy, relevant biological molecules (lipids, proteins, DNA) can be mapped and even the local protein conformation can be determined.

For a deeper understanding of biological processes at a nanoscale, the role of the solvent and of collective molecular modes cannot be neglected. In order to probe these contributions, FIR or THz spectroscopy can be used for a direct characterization of the relevant intermolecular vibrations.

In order to advance the nanospectroscopic characterization of biological systems, strategies for the characterization of liquid samples will be developed.

As Senior Support Scientist, I am working on the development of the nano-IR endstation (both for IR s-SNOM and AFM-IR) and I am supporting users performing micro- and nano-spectroscopy experiments as a local contact.

2022

Chemical analyses at micro and nano scale at SISSI-Bio beamline at Elettra-Sincrotrone Trieste - G Birarda, D Bedolla, F Piccirilli, C Stani, H Vondracek, et al. - Proc. of SPIE Vol 11957, 1195707-1

2021

Label-Free, Rapid and Facile Gold-Nanoparticles-Based Assay as a Potential Spectroscopic Tool for Trastuzumab Quantification - A Alsadig, H Vondracek, P Pengo, L Pasquato, P Posocco, P Parisse, et al.- Nanomaterials 11 (12), 3181

Aqueous TMAO solution under high hydrostatic pressure - I Kolling, C Hölzl, S Imoto, SR Alfarano, H Vondracek, L Knake, et al. - Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 23 (19), 11355-11365

2019

Urea's match in the hydrogen-bond network? A high pressure THz study - H Vondracek, S Alfarano, C Hoberg, I Kolling, F Novelli, F Sebastiani, et al. - Biophysical chemistry 254, 106240

Does hydrated glycine act as solidification nucleus at multi-kilobar conditions? - SR Alfarano, H Vondracek, F Sebastiani, F Novelli, C Hoberg, I Kolling, et al. - Biophysical chemistry 253, 106215

Hydrogen-Bonding in Liquid Water at Multikilobar Pressures - H Vondracek, S Imoto, L Knake, G Schwaab, D Marx, M Havenith - The Journal of Physical Chemistry B 123 (36), 7748-7753

2016

A novel set-up to investigate the low-frequency spectra of aqueous solutions at high hydrostatic pressure - L Knake, H Vondracek, M Havenith - Review of Scientific Instruments 87 (10), 104101

2014

THz absorption spectroscopy of solvated β-lactoglobulin - H Vondracek, J Dielmann-Gessner, W Lubitz, M Knipp, M Havenith - The Journal of Chemical Physics 141 (22), 12B639_1

Hendrik obtained both M.Sc. and Ph.D. from the Department of Physics at Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany.

For his Ph.D. (specialization Physical Chemistry), he studied the impact of the Tanford transition on the hydration properties of beta-lactoglobulin and the change of water and aqueous osmolyte solutions under extreme conditions (high pressure) using THz absorption spectroscopy. He gained experience in working with biochemical samples at the limit of spectroscopic viabilities as well as the integration and characterization of advanced measurement cells (Diamond Anvil Cells).

From September 2018, he worked in the NanoInnovation Lab at the synchrotron Elettra (Trieste, Italy). The main focus of his research was the development and characterization of electrochemical biosensors based on DNA directed immobilization, the AFM-based characterization of nanobodies (in collaboration with the University of Trieste) and the optimization of nanoparticle-based assays.

From April 2021, he was involved in a joint project with the infrared beamline branch SISSI-Bio, developing and applying strategies for IR micro- and nano-spectroscopy.

 

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