Dr. Svenja Morsbach
Svenja Morsbach studied biomedical chemistry at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz. During her studies, she spent seven months at the Brookhaven National Laboratory (USA) for a research stay in the group of Joanna Fowler. After the completion of her Diploma in 2012, Svenja Morsbach started to pursue her Ph.D. in chemistry at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research in the group of Prof. Katharina Landfester. Her thesis was focused on the influence of different parameters on the interaction between polymeric nanomaterials and blood plasma proteins and completed in 2015. Starting from November 2015, Dr. Svenja Morsbach became the group leader of the polymer analytics core facility in the department of Prof. Katharina Landfester at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research. There, she is now advancing polymer characterization techniques and focusing her research on the interaction of nanomaterials with biological components. Additionally, she is part of the team responsible for the Polymer Path educational project, sharing knowledge about polymers and plastics with the public.
In the field of nanomaterial-biomolecule interactions, currently, two main directions are in the focus of our research group. First, the interactions between different nanomaterials and various kinds of biomolecules need to be characterized and understood on a molecular level. For that purpose, we utilize various kinds of physico-chemical analysis techniques. We focus on the interplay between different kinds of biomolecules (such as proteins, peptides, lipids, etc.) and surfaces with various properties (e.g. functionalization, morphology, charge, etc.) to establish general trends.
Secondly, we aim at engineering nanomaterial surfaces by exploiting the above-mentioned interactions. Thus, biomolecules are used for directed adsorption/pre-coating or covalent functionalization of different systems to enable certain properties. These desired properties generally are long blood circulation times, prevention of complement activation and active targeting of certain tissues and cells.