studied biochemistry in Düsseldorf from 2004 to 2009. During his doctoral stud-ies under supervision of Prof. Dr. Pietruszka his research focused on the use of C-C-coupling enzymes namely aldolases and oxidoreductases and their use in organic chemistry as selective catalysts. Since 2014 he is group leader of the enzymology group of the Institute for Bio- and Geosciences I: Bioorganic Chemistry at the Forschungszentrum Jülich. Simultaneously, in 2015 he started to build-up his independent group – the secondary metabolism enzymology. His research is dedicated to employ enzymes or -more generally- biocatalysts as selective tools for synthetic purposes. The research focuses on enzymes from secondary metabolism. In terms of biocatalysts secondary metabolism is a cornucopia due to the manifold of very different natural products and the countless species producing them. Besides the sheer number of secondary metabolite producing enzymes, they are also interesting because of their synthetic flexibility – they are usually less substrate-selective as their primary metabolism pendants and this qualifies them for synthetic purposes.
Thomas Classen, Jörg Pietruszka, Bioorgan. Med. Chem. 2017, DOI: 10.1016/j.bmc.2017.06.045, "Complex molecules, clever solutions - enzymatic approaches towards natural product and active agent syntheses"
Andreas S. Klein, Andreas Domröse, Patrick Bongen, Hannah Brass, Thomas Classen, Anita Loschke, Thomas Drepper, Luca Laraia, Sonja Sievers, Karl-Erich Jaeger, Jörg Pietruszka, ACS Synthetic Biology, 2017, 6, 1757-1765, "New Prodigiosin Derivatives obtained by Mutasynthesis in Pseudomonas putida"
Elisabeth Rüthlein, Thomas Classen, Lina Dobnikar, Melanie Schölzel, Jörg Pietruszka, Adv. Synth. Catal. 2015, 357, 1775-1786; "Finding the Selectivity Switch - A Rational Approach towards Stereocomplementary Variants of the Ene Reductase YqjM"