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Research profile

Alex Mason received his BSc (Honours) in Nanotechnology from the University of New South Wales, located in Sydney, Australia (2012). He continued his studies there, working in the group of Prof. Pall Thordarson where he received his PhD in chemistry for the thesis entitled, “Polymersomes as Synthetic Cell Scaffolds” (2016). His interests and expertise in self-assembly, chemical biology, and artificial cells have brought him to TU/e, working in the van Hest group as a postdoctoral researcher. 

Research Themes

1. Artificial cells 

This project utilizes the self-assembly chemically accessible materials such as block copolymers and proteins to construct complex systems that begin to resemble the natural cell in both structure and function, or so called “protocells”. The de novo synthesis of a cell will undoubtedly have significant impacts on our knowledge of the natural cell and lead to the development of “living” technology, but will also contribute to understanding the precise chemical conditions required for the origin of life. There is significant scope for expansion of this project, for example exploring communication between populations of protocells and using these protocells as a framework to study membrane proteins. 

2. Nanomedicine

The delivery of nanoscopically “large” objects to the cytosol of the cell is not a trivial task if you want to avoid the low pH environment of the endo-/lysosomal pathway. Polymersomes present an ideal system for cytosolic delivery as we can significantly alter their surface chemistry and design delivery pathways for sensitive cargoes such as protein drugs.

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  • 2 Similar Profiles
Self assembly Chemical Compounds
Artificial Cells Medicine & Life Sciences
Copolymers Chemical Compounds
Block copolymers Chemical Compounds
Membranes Chemical Compounds
Medical nanotechnology Chemical Compounds
Surface chemistry Chemical Compounds
Nanotechnology Chemical Compounds

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Research Output 2017 2019

  • 57 Citations
  • 8 Article
  • 1 Meeting Abstract
  • 1 Review article

ATP-mediated transient behavior of stomatocyte nanosystems

Che, H., Zhu, J., Song, S., Mason, A. F., Cao, S., Pijpers, I. A. B., Abdelmohsen, L. K. E. A. & van Hest, J. C. M., 2 Jul 2019, In : Angewandte Chemie - International Edition. 58, 37, p. 13113-13118

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
Adenosine Triphosphate
Molecular interactions
3 Citations (Scopus)

Development of morphologically discrete PEG-PDLLA nanotubes for precision nanomedicine

Wauters, A. C., Pijpers, I. A. B., Mason, A. F., Williams, D. S., Tel, J., Abdelmohsen, L. K. E. A. & van Hest, J. C. M., 1 Jan 2019, In : Biomacromolecules. 20, 1, p. 177-183

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
Medical nanotechnology
Polyethylene glycols
Particle interactions
Open Access
Cell membranes
Cell culture
Self assembly
Artificial Cells
Biochemical Phenomena
Open Access