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Personal profile


Professor Rob Leurs studied Medicinal Chemistry at VU University Amsterdam and graduated in 1987. He performed his PhD research on G-protein coupled receptors and obtained his PhD degree from VU University in 1991. As a postdoctoral fellow at INSERM in Paris, he was involved in the cloning of genes encoding histaminergic and serotonergic receptors. In 1993, he was awarded with a 5-year fellowship of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. Rob Leurs was appointed as assistant and full professor of the Division of Medicinal Chemistry in respectively 1998 and 2000. From 2003 to 2005, he was one of the two scientific directors of the Leiden-Amsterdam Center of Drug Research. From 2005 to 2008, he was member of the executive board of the Top Institute Pharma. Professor Leurs served as director of the Department of Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences in 2006 and as vice-dean of the Faculty of Science from 2007 until 2010. He was awarded the Galenus Research Prize in 1997, the Organon Award for Pharmacology in 2000, and a Pfizer Academic Award and a STW/NWO Pionieer grant both in 2001. Moreover, the research group was selected as one of the few Dutch centers of excellence in Chemistry in 2014 and awarded 2 M€ TOP-PUNT grant of the Dutch foundation for Chemical Sciences. In 2016, he has been appointed as member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. 

Professor Leurs is currently involved in research on G-protein coupled receptors, with specific emphasis on ligands and receptor proteins for histamine and chemokines. Moreover, he is co-founder of Griffin Discoveries, a company that is valorizes the G-protein coupled receptor expertise and is currently involved in the discovery and development of GPCR receptor ligands. Next to that, he has in recent years started a new line on structure based development of potential drugs against Neglected Tropical Diseases. Prof. Leurs has been project leader of a NTD project of the Dutch Top institute Pharma and project leader of the EU-funded program Phosphodiesterase inhibitors for Neglected Parasitic diseases (www.PDE4NPD.eu).

Ancillary activities

  • Stichting Farmacochemie Amsterdam | Amsterdam | Secretaris | 2013-12-16
  • Stichting Farmacochemische Congressen | Amsterdam | Secretaris | 2013-12-16
  • Griffin Discoveries BV | Amsterdam | Directeur | 2015-04-01

Ancillary activities are updated daily

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

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Research Output 1990 2018

Structure-Activity Relationship
Neurotransmitter Agents

Design and synthesis of tool compounds to probe GPCRs

Kuhne, S. 2018 248 p.

Research output: ThesisPhD Thesis - Research VU, graduation VU

Open Access

Development of novel fluorescent histamine H1-receptor antagonists to study ligand-binding kinetics in living cells

Stoddart, L. A., Vernall, A. J., Bouzo-Lorenzo, M., Bosma, R., Kooistra, A. J., De Graaf, C., Vischer, H. F., Leurs, R., Briddon, S. J., Kellam, B. & Hill, S. J. 1 Dec 2018 In : Scientific Reports. 8, 1, 1572

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access

Non-imidazole histamine H3 Ligands. Part VII. Synthesis, in vitro and in vivo characterization of 5-substituted-2-thiazol-4-n-propylpiperazines

Guryn, R., Staszewski, M., Stasiak, A., McNaught Flores, D., Fogel, W. A., Leurs, R. & Walczynski, K. 3 Feb 2018 In : Molecules. 23, 2, p. 1-20 20 p., 326

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Synthesis and Characterization of a Bidirectional Photoswitchable Antagonist Toolbox for Real-Time GPCR Photopharmacology

Hauwert, N. J., Mocking, T. A. M., Da Costa Pereira, D., Kooistra, A. J., Wijnen, L. M., Vreeker, G. C. M., Verweij, E. W. E., De Boer, A. H., Smit, M. J., De Graaf, C., Vischer, H. F., De Esch, I. J. P., Wijtmans, M. & Leurs, R. 28 Mar 2018 In : Journal of the American Chemical Society. 140, 12, p. 4232-4243 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

G-Protein-Coupled Receptors