Piet Gros

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Piet Gros
Piet Gros (2010)
Born (1962-07-31) July 31, 1962 (age 55)
Dokkum, The Netherlands
Nationality Dutch
Occupation Professor of Biomacromolecular Crystallography
Employer Utrecht University
Known for Protein crystallography, complement system

Piet Gros (born July 31, 1962 in Dokkum) is a Dutch chemist and professor biomacromolecular crystallography at Utrecht University. In 2010 he received the NWO Spinoza Prize for the elucidation of the three-dimensional structure of the C3 protein, which plays a central role in the complement system and contributes to innate immunity.


Piet Gros was born in Dokkum, Netherlands. He studied chemistry at the University of Groningen, where he graduated cum laude with a master's degree. Five years later Gros received his PhD degree cum laude at the same university, with a thesis on protein crystallography. Subsequently he became a postdoctoral researcher at the ETH Zurich and later at Yale University. In 1994 Gros was given a position at Utrecht University to conduct experimental research towards new applications for protein crystallography. In 2002 he was given the position of full professor. From 2007 until 2010 Gros was head of the department of chemistry and in 2012 he became scientific director of the Bijvoet Center for Biomolecular Research.[1] Piet Gros received an ERC Advanced grant of the European Research Council in 2008,[2] is a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) since 2010 and in April 2013, Piet Gros became Knight in the Order of the Netherlands Lion, when he received a Royal Decoration for his scientific achievements.[3][4]

In 2010, Piet Gros received the NWO Spinoza Prize for the elucidation of the three-dimensional structure of the C3 protein. This protein is part of the oldest part of the immune system that is present in the human body, the complement system. Using structural biology techniques such as protein crystallography, the research group of Piet Gros studies structures and chemical interactions that are at the basis of immunological processes such as the complement system.[5][6][7]


The main expertise of Piet Gros is in the area of protein crystallography methodology and its application to large human plasma proteins and cell-surface receptors and membrane proteins.[8] Among his findings are the molecular mechanisms that underlie key steps in the human immune defense by the complement system, such as the mode of action of complement component 3[9] and component 8.[10] Other research in his lab has focussed on the adhesion of von Willebrand factor (A1 domain) to its platelet receptor GpIb and the structures of pathogenic bacterial outer-membrane proteins[8] and the movement of individual atoms within the defined protein structures.[11]


  1. ^ Anko de Jong (June 12, 2010). "Pionier in eiwit: Interview met Piet Gros". Leeuwarder Courant (in Dutch). 
  2. ^ "Utrechtse hoogleraren Piet Gros en Marco van Leeuwen krijgen ERC Advanced Grant". www.uu.nl (in Dutch). November 17, 2008. 
  3. ^ "Zeven Koninklijke onderscheidingen aan de Universiteit Utrecht". www.uu.nl (in Dutch). April 26, 2013. 
  4. ^ Xander Bronkhorst (April 26, 2013). "Lintjesregen in Academiegebouw" (in Dutch). DUB. 
  5. ^ "Spinozawinnaars 2010". NWO. June 7, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Winnaar Spinozapremie 2010: Piet Gros, biomacromoleculair kristallograaf". Volkskrant (in Dutch). June 7, 2010. 
  7. ^ "NWO Spinoza Prize for Psychologist, Astronomer, Chemist And Classicist". www.sciencenewsline.com. June 7, 2010. 
  8. ^ a b "prof. dr. P. (Piet) Gros". www.uu.nl. Retrieved May 1, 2013. 
  9. ^ Forneris, F.; Ricklin, D.; Wu, J.; Tzekou, A.; Wallace, R. S.; Lambris, J. D.; Gros, P. (2010). "Structures of C3b in Complex with Factors B and D Give Insight into Complement Convertase Formation". Science. 330 (6012): 1816–20. PMC 3087196Freely accessible. PMID 21205667. doi:10.1126/science.1195821. 
  10. ^ Hadders, M. A.; Beringer, D. X.; Gros, P. (2007). "Structure of C8 -MACPF Reveals Mechanism of Membrane Attack in Complement Immune Defense". Science. 317 (5844): 1552–4. PMID 17872444. doi:10.1126/science.1147103. 
  11. ^ "Beweging moleculen in beeld". ScienceGuide (in Dutch). Retrieved May 1, 2013. 

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