New members of the group

Postdoc Božidar Čobeljić is permanently employed as assistant at University of Belgrade, Serbia. He started his one-year stay in October 2016. His main field of research are metal complexes of Schiff bases of 2-quinolinecarboxaldehyde, 3-acetylpyridine and 2-(diphenylphosphino)benzaldehyde. During his stay he is planning the synthesis and characterization of new hydrazide ligands and their d- metal complexes.

New PhD student (young researcher) Jerneja Kladnik has started her doctoral studies in October 2016. Her study is funded by ARRS (Slovenian Research Agency) for four years. Before joining our group, Jerneja has finished a MSc in Pharmacy at the Faculty of Pharmacy in Ljubljana.

Catarina Cardoso Páscoa (4th year BSc student, Chemistry program @ Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal) joined us for one term of Erasmus practical training. At the Turel group she is involved in synthetic ruthenium chemistry on the subject of pyrithione metal complexes.

The Turel group welcomes our new team members and hopes for their pleasant and productive stay.

New article in Dalton Transactions with Dean’s award

Check out the newest accepted publication of Turel group in Dalton Transactions in collaboration with our colleagues from the Faculty of Pharmacy:

Clioquinol-ruthenium complex impairs tumour cell invasion by inhibiting cathepsin B activity


First author Ana Mitrović has been awarded the Dean’s award for most notable scientific achievements in 2016 at the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Ljubljana for the research presented in this scientific paper. Congratulations!

Visit by prof. Peter J. Sadler

Professor Peter J. Sadler from the University of Warwick, UK has visited our labs in mid-April and held a lecture fot the students of the FKKT doctoral study programme ‘Chemical Sciences’ entitled ‘The Elements od Life and Medicine’. The national newspaper Delo has in this occasion published an interview with prof. Sadler. You can read it (in Slovenian) here.


Special issue of JIB in occasion of COST CM1105 meeting

The Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry is dedicating its 160th volume (July 2016) to the COST CM1105 action ‘Functional metal complexes that bind to biomolecules’. Within this issue you can find two contribitions of the Turel research group. The first contrubution is entitled ‘Interactions of two cytotoxic organoruthenium(II) complexes with G-quadruplex’ by our former team member Sara Seršen in collaboration with the research team of prof. Janez Plavec from the National institute of Chemistry, Ljubljana, Slovenia. The second paper, entitled ‘Cobalt(II) complexes with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and α-diimines’ continues our successful partnership with prof. George Psomas in the field of structural determination and biological evaluation of 3d transition metal complexes of clinical agents.

Article in Dalton Transactions

Check out our latest research published in Dalton Transactions.

‘Pyrithione-based ruthenium complexes as inhibitors of aldo–keto reductase 1C enzymes and anticancer agents’

Congratulations to Sara Seršen on her PhD

The Turel group congratulates Srara Seršen on her successful defence of her PhD thesis with the title “Synthesis of novel ruthenium complexes with possible biological and catalytic properties“. We wish her all the best and continued success at her new job.

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Off to a new adventure!

After a brief return following her parental leave Sara Seršen has moved on to a new challenge. As of April 1st she is starting her new job in the pharmaceutical industry at ‘Lek d.d., a Sandoz company’. We wish her all the best and look forward to her PhD defense on April 25th.


From left to right: Matija Uršič, Tanja Lipec, Sara Seršen, Iztok Turel, Jakob Kljun, Špela Peršič

We did it again! 2015 – A year in retrospect.

A record year again, as far as the stats go for the Turel group. Data are still coming in (and will be for some time) but we have set the bar higher for ‘Sum of times cited’ according to Web of Science (on Feb. 24th) with 381 citations in 2015. The year 2015 has been fairly productive for the Turel group with:

  • 9 scientific papers,
  • 1 book chapter (upcoming),
  • 1 editorial (
  • 10 conference abstracts/posters
  • 4 invited lectures (Iztok Turel: Ruđer Boškovič Institute, Zagreb, Croatia; Nanjing University, Nanjing, PR China; Soochow University, Soochow, PR China; Jakob Kljun: Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Ljubljana)
  • 3 BSc theses (Urška Bunta, Špela Peršič, Tadej Mernik)
  • Finalist (Top 5) of the ‘Mentor of the year 2015’ award
  • Successful application for a Slovenian-Serbian bilateral project with prof. M. Djuran research group from the University of Kragujevac, Serbia (special thanks to dr. Marija Živković)

We are also at a record-high group members with 1 post-doc researcher, 3 PhD students (albeit 2 on maternity leave), 2 MSc students, 1 Erasmus BSc student from Madrid, Spain and another 2 Slovenian BSc students.

Number of publications

Number of publications

Number of citations

Number of citations

Back cover in Dalton Transactions

The scientific paper in Dalton Transactions co-authored by Iztok Turel with partners from the Ruđer Bošković institute, Zagreb, Croatia, headed by prof. Srećko I. Kirin has received spotlight as the editors have emphasized the importance and quality of the research results by awarding it the back cover graphic. The article by Đ. Škalamera, E. Sanders, R. Vianello, A. Maršavelski, A. Pevec, I. Turel and S. I. Kirin titled ‘Synthesis and characterization of ML and ML2 metal complexes with amino acid substituted bis(2-picolyl)amine ligands’ (Dalton Trans. 2016, 45, 2845-2858) presents the studies on the influence of the structure of aminoacid-functionalized tridentate ligands on the spatial arrangement of ligands and the formation of different isomers of octahedral zinc complexes. These complexes serve as model compounds for the development of novel catalysts for asymmetric transformations.


Iztok Turel finalist of ‘Mentor of the year 2015’

Mentor of the year is a nationwide contest awarded to outstanding scientists and mentors of PhD students and postdoc researchers. Among 27 nominees the Ru-team Iztok Turel has made it into the ‘Top 5’ final stage of the Mentor of the year 2015 contest together with esteemed collegues (photo link)

  • dr. Štefan Bojnec (Faculty of management of the University of Primorska, Koper),
  • dr. Bogdan Filipič (Dept. of Intelligent Systems, Institute Jožef Stefan, Ljubljana),
  • dr. Gregor Serša (Institute of Oncology, Ljubljana) and
  • dr. Barbara Simončič (Chair of Textile and Clothing Engineering, Faculty of Natural Sciences and Engineering, University of Ljubljana).

Congratulations to the winner prof. dr. Barbara Simončič and all fellow nominees.

Check out the photos of the event.