Prof Oscar P. Kuipers
• Head of the Department of Molecular Genetics, University of Groningen
• Director of the University of Groningen Center for Sustainable Antibiotics
• Molecular biology
FEMS Expert: Prof Oscar P. Kuipers
Guest editor for FEMS Journals| FEMS2017 Session Chair | EAM | Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences
Oscar P. Kuipers is full professor in Molecular Genetics and heads the Molecular Genetics research group at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands since 1999. Trained in molecular biology and biochemistry, he moved towards molecular genetics and synthetic biology after his PhD.
Oscar is an expert on the biosynthesis, function, engineering and regulation of modified antimicrobial peptides produced by bacteria (known as lantibiotics). From 2003 onwards, Oscar has also carried out pioneering research into single-cell biology, unravelling the mechanisms leading to phenotypic heterogeneity in bacterial populations.
Since 2000, Oscar has used transcriptomics and bioinformatics to study gene regulation and gene regulatory networks in Gram-positive bacteria. His group has developed more than 20 frequently used bioinformatics tools, including BAGEL, a web-based bactericin genome-mining tool.
Currently, his group is heavily focusing on developing novel antimicrobials, using lantibiotics as an inspirational template. Utilizing the modular structure of lantibiotics, a strategy employing synthetic biology principles has been developed, leading to the design of hundreds of thousands of new-to-Nature molecules in an in vivo plug-and-play system.