Marko Dolinar Web Page 

About myself
Travel and nature photography
Department's wine-tasting society

  About myself

As of January 2006, I am teaching assistant and assistant professor at the Faculty of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, University of Ljubljana. I am involved with different courses, including Biochemistry (3rd year Chemistry and 2nd year Biochemistry), Recombinant DNA Technology (4th year Biochemistry) and Biological membranes (4th year Biochemistry). Our small but efficient Chair of Biochemistry is the main motor behind the only undergraduate biochemistry programme in Slovenia. The 4-years course is organised with substantial help of lecturers from other chairs of the faculty as well as lecturers from other faculties and research institutes. Starting in 2005, I also teach a part of Molecular Biology course at the postgraduate level within the Biomedicine University programme.

In addition, I am part-time research coworker at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Jozef Stefan Institute in Ljubljana, Slovenia. From June 1996 to January 1998, I was acting head of department. The work of the department was described in an article I wrote for the Delo newspaper in March 1997 (in Slovenian). I spend most of my research time at the institute dealing with recombinant cysteine proteases. We started about a decade ago and succeeded to produce reasonable amounts of various cathepsins in E. coli (see Bibliography ).

My beginings in biochemistry were in 1984/85 with my diploma work on isolation of chicken cystatin and kininogen from egg-whites (my mentor was Janko Kos, now professor at the Faculty of Pharmacy). In 1986, I started as postgraduate student at the J. Stefan Institute (JSI) Biochemistry Department. I did my first steps into genetic engineering with long-nosed viper phospholipases, but the majority of my knowledge in this field comes from the 3.5 years I spent at the Munich University Department of Clinical Chemistry and Clinical Biochemistry (lead by Prof. Dr. Hans Fritz). From October 1987 to March 1991 I was working on recombinant serine protease inhibitors in the laboratory of Dr. Ennes Auerswald and in April 1993 I obtained my PhD from the Technical University in Munich. <>Back in Ljubljana, I switched to cysteine proteases. In 1995, our team was composed of (left to right on the picture) Gregor Kopitar (now researcher in a major Slovenian pharmaceutical company), myself (started with cathepsin L, then cathepsin H, now cathepsin W), Darja Barlic Maganja (cathepsin L and mutants; she moved to Veterinary Faculty after her PhD in 1997) and Robert Kuhelj (cathepsin B; now works for an American biotech company in Switzerland). Here, I should also mention many BSc students, to whom I have been mentor in those years: Dagmar Dobravc (now representing one of the international pharmaceutical companies), Barbara Kunic (in the patenting department of a Slovenian pharmaceutical company), Barbara Kahne (now with health authorities on the Slovenian coast), Jerica Rozman (completed her PhD at our department in 2003 and now continues as postdoc), Andreja Mehle (she works in a pharmacy), Benjamin Gorinsek (completed his PhD degree in 2005), Katja Galesa (after her PhD she joined the structural biology group at the Institute) and Mare Fonovic (postdoc at the Stanford University). In the recent years, my diploma students were Katja Kerc (works in a pharmaceutical company), Stanislav Mandelc (now junior researcher at the Biotechnical Faculty) and Franci Vres (still looking for a job in biochemistry, I think). All our work was and is done within a research project, lead by Prof. Dr. Vito Turk, the former head of department and director of the Institute.

In 2006 Biochemistry Chair is moving its basic courses to the old Chemistry building at Vegova street, but is still keeping some of the practical courses at Jamova. This laboratory will also serve for  BSc research works and eventually for research of PhD students. Thanks to the funds of the Faculty of Chemistry and Chemical Technology but also in part from the JSI research programs our teaching assistants and lecturers are engaged in, we were able to purchase all the basic equipment needed for production, purification and characterization of recombinant proteins. We plan to start our own projects in 2006/7.

I am/was webmaster of the departmental homepage (with over 100 accesses per day), homepage of the Chair of Biochemistry and of some other WWW pages, including IST (International Society on Toxinology) and SBD (Slovenian Biochemical Society) homepages. I was member of the Board of the Slovenian Biochemical Society (SBD) as treasurer (1998-2001) and secretary (2002-2005) of the Society. Its Terminology Comission is still working on Slovenian translations of English biochemical terms. Often, I was member of various organising committees, like of the traditional Brdo Symposia on Proteinase Inhibitors and Biological Control, Portoroz conferences on cysteine proteinases and their inhibitors and of several SBD meetings.

My work within the Faculty is summarized on the Faculty Web page.

Travel and Nature Photography

My favourite travel destination is SE Asia, but I try not to neglect the native Europe. Sometimes as a tourist, more often as a traveller I try to capture memories of other worlds. On the other side of the camera, I am fascinated by minor things so often overseen. Some of my photographs can be seen on my Web album.
On weekends I often escape to nearby coutryside, most often towards South and West of Slovenia. I collected a few vistas from Slovenia in a separate folder.

  See the homepage of the informal biochemical wine-tasting society to get an idea of what we do (or rather did, as the meetings get more and more rare). It all started at the J. Stefan Institute, but as people move, change positions and jobs, we now have members from all around Ljubljana, from PhD students to retired researchers and university professors.
Slovenian wines  are not as famous as French, Italian or Austrian, but there are some superb wines produced in Slovenia, from the westernmost hills with Mediterranean influences and prevailingly red wines to the continental Northeast with predominately white wines.

Feedback (last changed Feb 16, 2007, but still far from finished...)