Riccardo Rubbiani

Dr. Riccardo Rubbiani
Post-doctoral Researcher
Room 34-H-40
+41 44 635 46 86


Riccardo was born in the foggy North of Italy (Modena) in 1981. He performed his undergraduate study at the University of Modena with major in Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Technology. He completed his diploma-thesis at the Karl-Franzens University of Graz (Austria) in 2005 working on the project “Development of an HPLC method for the simultaneous determination of Tryptophan and Kynurenine in cell suspensions”.

After a brief experience in R&D by Neotron S.p.a. and as a Field Service Engineer by Waters Corporation, he joined, in May 2009, the group of Prof. Ingo Ott in the northern part of Germany (Braunschweig) as PhD student. During his PhD thesis he dealt with the synthesis and biological evaluation of new anticancer gold(I) NHC complexes.

Riccardo finished his PhD in January 2013 and joined Prof. Gasser´s group as a postdoc. In Zurich, his work is focused on the chemical biology of organometallic compounds.

Besides the scientific interest, Riccardo plays the saxophone, likes fencing and demonstrates outstanding skills at the meal-table.



2012  Novartis / Ciba-Geigy Jubilee Foundation Fellowship


[10] L. Oehninger, R. Rubbiani, I. Ott, N-Heterocyclic carbene metal complexes in medicinal chemistry, Dalton Trans., (2013), DOI: 10.1039/C2DT32617E.

[9] K. Navakoski de Oliveira, V. Andermark, S. Grafenstein, L. A. Onambel, G. Dahl, R. Rubbiani, G. Wolber, C. Gabbiani, L. Messori, A. Prokop, I. Ott, Butyl tin(IV) benzoates: inhibition of thioredoxin reductase, tumor growth inhibition and interactions with proteins, ChemMedChem, 7, (2012), 1-10.

[8] S. D. Köster, H. Alborzinia, S. Can, I. Kitanovic, S. Wölfl, R. Rubbiani, I. Ott, P. Riesterer, A. Prokop, K. Merz, N. Metzler-Nolte, A spontaneous gold(I)-azide alkyne cycloaddition reaction yields gold-peptide bioconjugates which overcome cisplatin resistance in a p53-mutant cancer cell line, Chem. Sci., 3,(2012), 2062-2072.

[7] M. A. Nazif, R. Rubbiani, H. Alborzinia, I. Kitanovic, S. Wölfl, I. Ott, W. S. Sheldrick, Cytotoxicity and cellular impact of dinuclear organoiridium DNA intercalatorsand nucleases with long rigid bridging ligands, Dalton Trans., 41, (2012), 5587-5598.

[6] Y. Geldmacher, K. Splith, I. Kitanovic, H. Alborzinia, S. Can, R. Rubbiani, A. Nazif, P. Wefelmeier, A. Prokop, I. Ott, S. Wölfl, I. Neundorf, W. S. Sheldrick Cellular impact and selectivity of half-sandwich organorhodium(III) anticancer complexes and their organoiridium(III) and trichloridorhodium(III) counterparts, J. Biol. Inorg. Chem., 17, (2012), 631-646.

[5] R. Rubbiani, S. Can, I. Kitanovic, H. Alborzinia, M. Stefanopoulou, M. Kokoschka, S. Mönchgesang, W. S. Sheldrick, S. Wölfl, I. Ott, Comparative in-vitro evaluation of N-heterocyclic carbene gold(I) complexes of the benzimidazolidene type, J. Med. Chem., 54, (2011), 8646-8657.

[4] C. Wetzel, P. C. Kunz, M. U. Kassack, A. Hamacher, P. Böhler, W. Watjen, I. Ott, R. Rubbiani, B. Spingler, Gold(I) complexes of water-soluble diphos-type ligands: synthesis, anticancer activity, apoptosis and thioredoxin reductase inhibition, Dalton Trans., 40, (2011),  1–9.

[3] Y. Geldmacher, R. Rubbiani, P. Wefelmeier, A. Prokop, I. Ott ,W. S. Sheldrick Synthesis and DNA-binding properties of apoptosis-inducing cytotoxic half-sandwich rhodium(III) complexes with methyl-substituted polypyridyl ligands, J. Organomet. Chem, 696 (2011) 1023-1031.

[2] Y. Geldmacher, I. Kitanovic, H. Alborzinia, K. Bergerhoff, R. Rubbiani, P. Wefelmeier, A. Prokop, R. Gust, I. Ott, S. Wölfl, W. S. Sheldrick, Cellular selectivity and biological impact of cytotoxic rhodium(III) and iridium(III) complexes containing methyl-substituted phenanthroline ligands, ChemMedChem., 6, (2011), 1–12.

[1] R. Rubbiani, I. Kitanovic, H. Alborzinia, S. Can, A. Kitanovic, L. A. Onambele, M. Stefanopoulou, Y. Geldmacher, W. S. Sheldrick, G. Wolber, A. Prokop, S. Wölfl, I. Ott, Benzimidazol-2-ylidene gold(I) complexes are thioredoxin reductase inhibitors with multiple antitumor properties, J. Med. Chem., 53, (2010), 8608–8618.