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Molecular machines of the future

Evolution has developed very efficient molecular machines, for example for producing energy through rotation. Hendrik Dietz would like to harness these concepts to build his own molecular motors. His group has successfully demonstrated that they can encode and synthesize complex shapes using DNA origami, and have recently discovered how to reduce the cost for mass use and production. With his research, Dietz gets closer to his goal of revolutionizing nanotechnology with the capabilities of molecular motors, just like industry was revolutionized by electric and diesel motors.

About Hendrik Dietz

Inspired by the rich functionalities of natural macromolecular assemblies such as enzymes, molecular motors, and viruses, the Dietz lab investigates how to build increasingly complex molecular structures. The goal is to build molecular devices and machines that can execute user-defined tasks. Molecular self-assembly with DNA is an attractive route toward achieving this goal. DNA origami in particular enables building nanodevices that can already be employed for making new discoveries in biomolecular physics and protein science.

Prof. Hendrik Dietz obtained his doctorate at TUM in physics and went on to work as a post-doctoral researcher at Harvard Medical School. He has been a professor of experimental biophysics at TUM since 2009 and has since received many awards for his work, the most recent of which was the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz-Preis, one of the highest scientific recognitions in Germany.