Given names:

Academic titles:
prof. dr. ir.

Birth date and place:

Present function:
Full professor, University of Twente, NL



Jonkheijm (1978) obtained his PhD from the Eindhoven University of Technology (NL, 2005) with Prof. Dr. E. W. Meijer as advisor on macromolecular engineering of pi-conjugated oligomers into nanoscopic objects using supramolecular interactions. His thesis was awarded with the 2006 Houwink Award on Macromolecular Organic Chemistry. After that, Jonkheijm moved for a post-doctoral stay as an Alexander von Humboldt fellow to the Chemical Biology department of Prof. Dr. H. Waldmann (Germany, Max Planck Institute for Molecular Physiology). His research interests included protein microarrays and surface microstructuring techniques. In 2008 he became Assistant Professor in the Molecular Nanofabrication group of Prof. Dr. J. Huskens at the University of Twente and MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology. In 2013 he was appointed there as Associate Professor and in 2019 he was installed there as Full Professor leading the Biointerface Chemistry Group. In 2017 he has been a visiting Professor at the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering, University of Toronto, Canada. He received career development grants for early (VENI, 2008) and experienced (VIDI, 2013) researchers of the Dutch Innovation Research Incentive Scheme. He received the Young Investigator Award of the Biomedical Materials Program (2010) and a Starting Grant of the European Research Council (2010). He has received the 2018 Gold Medal of the Royal Netherlands Chemical Society. Recently he received a NWO-XL consortium grant and participates in the ITN EU network Dirnano.

Present research interests include: cell-instructive biointerfaces, self-assembly, cell-surface interactions, dynamics, organic materials, biomimetics. He is (co)author of 150 refereed research papers and three granted patents. He explores commercial potentialities through three ERC Proof-of-Concept grants (2017, IMPLANTaLife; 2014, BioStealth; 2012, Multichip) and co-founded in 2016 Lipocoat B.V, a high tech spin-off that commercializes bio-inspired coatings for healthcare applications.


Current positions

  • Since 2018: Full Professor at Univ. of Twente, NL. PI of TechMed Centre and Organ-on-Chip Centre; PI MESA+ Institute and Molecules Centre.
  • 2017/8: Visiting Professor at the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering, University of Toronto, Canada.
  • 2016: Guest Professor: Beijing University of Chemical Technology, China.
  • 2015: Guest Professor: School of Materials and Technology, China University of Geosciences Beijing, China.                                        

Professional Experience


  • 2013-2018: Adjunct Professer, ius promovendus, Univ. of Twente, NL
  • 2011-2013: Associate Professor Supramolecular Chemistry, Univ. of Twente, NL
  • 2008-2011: Assistant Professor, Univ. of Twente, NL
  • 2006 -2008: Alexander von Humboldt fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Physiology, Department of Chemical Biology, Dortmund, Germany, Advisor: Prof. Dr. H. Waldmann
  • 2005: Post-doc: Eindhoven University of Technology, NL, Advisor: Prof. Dr. E.W. Meijer



  • 2018: Gold Medal of the Royal Netherlands Chemical Society.
  • 2013-2018: Vidi Innovational Research Incentive Scheme (career development grant for experienced researchers), Dutch Science Foundation (NWO), project “Molecularly engineering cell-material interfaces” (800 k€).
  • 2013: Faculty of Science and Technology Teaching Award, University of Twente, NL
  • 2010-2016: ERC Starting Grant, European Research Council, project “Supramolecular cell manipulation” (1.5 M€).
  • 2010-2014: Biomedical Materials (BMM) Young Investigator Award, awarded to young investigators that lead a public-private consortium “Supramolecular substrates for dynamic cell studies” (1.8 M€).
  • 2008-2010: Veni Innovational Research Incentive Scheme (early career development grant), NWO  project “Molecular nanoscale cell manipulation” (220 k€).
  • 2006-2008: Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship, Germany, 60 k€ support of post-doctoral stay at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Physiology.


Ancillary activities

  • Stichting TOFVoorzitter Raad van Toezicht
  • LipoCoat BVAdviseur

Many fundamental issues of how cells sense and react to their environment are just beginning to be understood and tools that enable precise control over the molecular scale interfaces with and between living cells are at the forefront of these advances. In my group I aim to develop a materials-based platform to establish control over living cells on the molecular level. I probe the dependence of cell signalling on the microenvironment in the context of integrin- and cadherin-mediated adhesion. My overarching strategy builds on the success of existing live cell-supported supramolecular host-guest and membrane interfaces. Key is the incorporation of biological signalling ligands into synthetic supramolecular materials and interfaces. I greatly extend this concept by defining the mechanics of ligands displayed to cells within an integrated format. I integrate my materials technology into a microwell formats allowing precise 3D control of the cellular microenvironment in ways never before achieved with synthetic systems. By engaging the cell’s natural signalling machinery, these structures will enable a variety of future quantitative cell-based assays and diagnostic tools with academic, industrial and clinical value.

Other contributions

Key group publications:

1. Di Iorio D, Verheijden ML, van der Vries E, Jonkheijm P, Huskens J: Weak multivalent binding of influenza hemagglutinin (HA) nanoparticles at a sialoglycan-functionalized supported lipid bilayer." ACS Nano 13, 3413 (2019), doi

2. Crispim J, Fu SC, Lee YW, Fernandez HAM, Jonkheijm P, Yung PSH, Saris DBF: Bioactive BMP2-binding tape captures endogenous BMP2 and accelerates healing after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. Am. J. Sports Med. 46, 2905 (2018), doi.

3. Koçer G, Jonkheijm P: Guiding hMSC adhesion and differentiation on supported lipid bilayers. Adv. Healthcare Mater. 6, 1600862(2017), doi

4. Sankaran S, Jaatinen L, Brinkmann J, Zambelli T, Vӧrӧs J, Jonkheijm P: Cell adhesion on dynamic supramolecular surfaces probed by Fluid Force Microscopy-based single-cell force spectroscopy. ACS Nano 11, 3867 (2017), doi.

5. Koçer G, ter Schiphorst J, Hendrikx M, Schenning APHJ, Jonkheijm P: Light-responsive hierarchically structured liquid crystal polymer networks for harnessing cell adhesion and migration. Adv. Mater. 29, 1606407 (2017), doi

6. Sankaran S, Kiren MC, Jonkheijm P: Incorporating bacteria as a living component in supramolecular self-assembled monolayers through dynamic nanoscale interactions. ACS Nano 4, 3579 (2015), doi.

7. Cabanas-Danés J, Dooms Rodrigues E, Landman E, van Weerd J, van Blitterswijk CA, Verrips T, Huskens J, Karperien M, Jonkheijm P: A supramolecular host-guest carrier system for growth factors employing VHH fragmentsJ. Am. Chem. Soc. 136, 12675 (2014), doi.

8. An Q, Brinkmann J, Huskens J, Krabbenborg SO, de Boer J, Jonkheijm P: A supramolecular system for the electrochemically controlled release of cellsAngew. Chem. Int. Ed. 51, 12233 (2012), doi.

9. Wasserberg D, Cabanas-Danés J, Prangsma J, O’Mahony S, Tromp E, Blum C, Thompson D, Huskens J, Subramaniam V, Jonkheijm P: Controlling protein surface orientation by strategic placement of His6-tags. ACS Nano 11, 9068 (2017), doi 

10. Perl A, Gomezcasado A, Thompson D, Dam HH, Jonkheijm P, Reinhoudt DN, Huskens J: Molecular ‘Hop, skip and jump’: Surface gradient-driven motion along a receptor interface. Nature Chem. 3, 317 (2011), doi.

Research profiles

I teach Chemical Biology in M1 BSc BMT and Advanced Organic Chemistry in Q3 MSc BME.

I teach Fundamentals of Chemistry in M1 BSc CSE and Physical Organic Chemistry in MSc CSE.

If you are interested in BSc or MSc projects for BMT/BME BET track or CSE M&M track, send me an email on

Affiliated study programs

Courses academic year 2023/2024

Courses in the current academic year are added at the moment they are finalised in the Osiris system. Therefore it is possible that the list is not yet complete for the whole academic year.

Courses academic year 2022/2023


University of Twente

Carré (building no. 15), room C4205
Hallenweg 23
7522 NH Enschede

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