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Herman J.C. Berendsen

I am retired professor of (bio)physical chemistry of the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, and until October 1, 1999, I was the supervisor of the MD (Molecular Dynamics) group., which belongs to the research institute GBB (Groningen Biomolecular Science and Biotechnology Institute). From Oct 1, 1999, until 2005, the MD group has been supervised by Prof. Dr A.E. Mark (Alan), who took up a position in Australia in 2005. Since 2006 Prof. Dr S.-J. Marrink (Siewert-Jan) leads the MD group.
My research has focused on biomolecular modeling, with special interest in proteins and membranes; mixed quantum/classical dynamical simulations, functional motions on longer time scales, and polarisable force fields. On the computer side: we have developed the public domain software GROMACS, based on a parallel computer project. See


After having served in an advisory role with the KNAW (see the Position Paper "De Toekomst van Bioinformatica in Nederland" ) and with the NWO "RegieOrgaan Genomics" for the BSIK proposal (2003) for financial support of the BioRange program, I have been a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Netherlands Bio-Informatics Center (NBIC) until mid-2006. In the third quarter of 2006 I was the chairman of an international Evaluation Committee for the NBIC: see the evaluation report (pdf file).

I have been the Secretary of the InterUnion Bioinformatics Group (IUBG), which is a joint organisation of several international scientific unions (IUPAB, IUBMB, IUCr, IUPAC and CODATA), with ICSU/UNESCO support, aimed at safeguarding the public access to biodata. The IUBG has completed its final report in May 2002. The IUBG Final Report is available here.

Hierarchical Modelling

Based on courses given on Hierarchical Modelling at several institutes between 2000 and 2003, I have written a book on this subject, entitled Simulating the Physical World, Hierarchical Modeling from Quantum Mechanics to Fluid Dynamics. The book was published in July 2007 by Cambridge University Press. For web pages related to the book click here.

Data and Error Analysis

In 2011 the book A Student's Guide to Data and Error Analysis was published by Cambridge University Press. Look here for details.


Look here for a list of my publications. The publications of the MD group (with links to the articles) can be found here, and our publications together with those of my former collaborator Wilfred van Gunsteren (now at the ETH, Zurich) can be found here.
By ISI my name has been put on the list of 'highly cited' authors (click here to view the entry). View also an interview with ISI Special Topics (New Hot Paper Comments). By 20 -03-2012 there were 41,993 citations, based on 219 articles; h-index: 64.

Contact Info

Prof. Dr H.J.C. Berendsen
Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute(GBB)
Centre for Life Sciences: Linnaeusborg, building U
University of Groningen
Nijenborgh 7
the Netherlands

postal address:
P.O. Box 11103
9700 CC Groningen
The Netherlands

E-mail: H.J.C.Berendsen(at)  
Phone: lab and secretary +31.50.3634323; fax +31.50.3634398