Dr. Yannakopoulou graduated from the University of Athens with a BS degree in Chemistry. She received her MSc degree in Chemistry from Clemson University, South Carolina, USA (with Prof. R.A. Abramovitch) and her PhD degree in Chemistry from the University of Florida, USA (1988, with Prof. A. R. Katritzky). She was then employed as a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Florida (1988-1989) and repatriated to join NCSR “Demokritos” under a post-doctoral contract (1989-1993). Currently she is Researcher A at the Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, NCSR “Demokritos”. Her research focuses mainly in supramolecular entities based on cyclodextrins and the employment of synthesis to design new derivatives with tailored properties for molecular transport towards bio nano applications. Solution NMR spectroscopy is the main method to elucidate structures of derivatives and supramolecular complexes and assemblies. Specifically, points of interest include stability and equilibria of cyclodextrin-guest systems in solution; synthetic modifications of cyclodextrins to acquire specific properties (nucleotide and DNA carriers, cell penetrating agents, antimicrobial agents, nanoparticle formation); combinations of cyclodextrin derivatives with photoactive molecules and their nanoconstructs as multifunctional bio and photo active systems combining ROS production, drug transport and photoimaging for chemotoxic and photodynamic applications and/or tuned optical properties; and cycldextrin derivatives for coordination with metal ions.
She has served as the coordinator of the EU FP7 project PEOPLE-ITN “Novel multifunctional cyclodextrin- based nanocarriers for drug encapsulation and delivery as a strategy to overcome current therapeutic drawbacks”, CYCLON (2009-2013), as partner in the FP7-ITN “Nanocarriers for the delivery of antimicrobial agents to fight resistance mechanisms” CycloN-Hit (2014-2018), partner in the ERA-NET EuroNanomed-II-JTC2015 "Nanoparticle mediated Photochemical internalization (PCI) of small anticancer drugs" PCInano project (2016-2021) and as participating scientist in previous EU and National projects. She has also served as an expert evaluator of several EU projects. She has authored and co-authored 103 articles in international refereed journals and one book chapter and has participated in > 85 national and international conferences.
She is the Scientist in Charge of the high resolution NMR Lab for liquid samples NCSRD “Demokritos” since 1991 (250 and 500 MHz).