Scientific representation

New biological and physicochemical approaches for characterisation of toxicological relevant parameters for air pollution and health research

Time: Thursday, April 20, 2023 (15:25 - 15:50)

Venue: The 2nd floor, SECC center, 799 Nguyen Van Linh Street, Dist. 7, HCMC

Prof.Dr. Ralf Zimmermann

Ralf Zimmermann studied Chemistry and Physics at the Technical University Munich (TUM) and the Ludwigs-Maximilian University, Munich. In 1991 he graduated from the TUM (Physical Chemistry, Prof. Boesl). He received his Ph.D. degree in 1995 from the same University with Prof. Kettrup (Ecological Chemistry and Instrumental Analytical Chemistry) and Prof. Schlag (Physical Chemistry). He moved as post-doc to the GSF Research Centre for Environment and Health in Oberschleißheim, Germany and the University of Antwerp (Prof. Adams). Based on research on laser mass spectrometry, dioxin analysis and combustion aerosol monitoring he received in 2001 the hablitation - degree from the Technical University Munich-Weihenstephan. 

From 2001 to 2008 Zimmermann was appointed as Associated Professor of Analytical Chemistry at the University of Augsburg as well as head of the Chemistry Department of the bifa-Environmental Institute in Augsburg. Since 2008 he is Full Professor of Analytical Chemistry at the University of Rostock (UR) and in personal union head of the Department “Comprehensive Molecular Analytics” (CMA) at the Helmholtz Zentrum München (HMGU). The Rostock and Munich parts of his research group are united as “Joint Mass Spectrometry Centre”, supported by both of his affiliations. 

His research interests are in the field of the physical properties, organic composition as well as biological- and health-effects of anthropogenic aerosol emissions and ambient aerosols. The instrumental on-line and off-line analysis of the chemical signature of complex molecular mixtures using high resolution Mass Spectrometric (MS) approaches, comprehensive chromatographic and thermal analytical techniques as well as novel photo ionisation based MS tools are further focal points of his research interest. This includes the development and application of advanced single particle aerosol mass spectrometric technologies. For determination of the biological effects of aerosol and fine dust exposure, he is interested in the air-liquid interface exposure technology of human lung cell cultures and models. In his group the exposed cell cultures are subjected to toxicological and multi-omics analysis for studying the biological responses and the health impact of aerosols. 

Since 2012 Zimmermann is leading the Virtual Helmholtz Institute “HICE-Aerosol and Health”, which is addressing the composition, biological effects and health implications of combustion aerosol emissions in the framework of an international cooperation network ( and from 2019 on, he is heading the Helmholtz International Lab aeroHEALTH. Within aeroHEALTH, the HMGU, the Forschungszentrum Jülich (FZJ) and the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel are investigating within a joint long - term initiative the impact of photochemical ageing and atmospheric processing of aerosol emissions and ambient air on human health.