Helmholtz Center Coastal Researcher Receives Spectroscopy Prize
Dr. Daniel Pröfrock, an environmental scientist from the Institute for Coastal Research at the Helmholtz Center Geesthacht was recognized with this year’s Bunsen-Kirchhoff Prize for his outstanding scientific accomplishments. He accepted the award and the 2,500 Euro grant accompanying it during the ANAKON conference, one of the most important annual conferences in Analytical Chemistry in the German speaking countries.
Dr. Daniel Pröfrock was recognized for a number of his work, in which he developed miniaturized separation processes, among other procedures. These processes are used most frequently in the investigation of biological samples, particularly when only small amounts of material are available for multiple investigations.
In addition, the techniques developed were combined with new, sensitive procedures for determining the presence of trace molecules and elements. This makes it possible, for example, to prove and quantify the presence of sensitive biomolecules and harmful substances.
Currently, the processes developed by Dr. Pröfrock and his colleagues from the Department of Marine Bioanalytical Chemistry are being used within the framework of the COSYNA project, which studies the presence and evaluation of hazardous materials in the oceans. A coastal observation system, COSYNA is a network of numerous measurement stations extending across the North Sea.
The methods developed make possible the quantifying of specifically chosen biomarkers in so-called indicator organisms, the presence of certain enzymes in muscles, for example, and allow for researchers to identify and evaluate the presence of hazardous materials. This combination of tasks, identifying hazardous materials while including methods for biological evaluation on the basis of biomarkers, makes a more exact description of the health of coasts and oceans possible.
The German Research Group on Applied Spectroscopy has regularly awarded the Bunsen-Kirchhoff Prize for analytical spectroscopy since 1990, to recognize outstanding spectroscopic research primarily by young researchers from universities, research institutes or industry.
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