TUM – Technical University of Munich Menü

Prof. Dr. Ville R. I. Kaila



Academic Career and Research Areas

The research of Professor Kaila (b.1983) focuses on elucidating the fundamental molecular mechanisms of enzyme catalysis with the main emphasis on biological energy conversion systems. He employs state-of-the-art methodology of theoretical and computational biochemistry – including first-principle quantum chemical and classical molecular simulations – to obtain an insight into the structure, energetics and dynamics of biomolecules.

Professor Kaila studied at the University of Helsinki, Finland, and was awarded a MSc in 2006 and a PhD in 2009. After a period spent doing post-doctoral research at the University of Helsinki, in 2010 he was awarded a long-term fellowship by the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) and joined the Laboratory of Chemical Physics at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). From 2011 to 2013 Professor Kaila adjunct professor in physical biochemistry at the University of Helsinki. In 2013 he was appointed professor of computational biocatalysis (W2, tenure-track) at TUM.


  • European Research Council (ERC), Starting Grant, "bioPCET", (2016)
  • Recognition award: The Grand Prize (“Stora priset”) from Oskar Öflunds foundation (2015)
  • Recognition award by the Ruth & Nils-Erik Stenbäck’s Foundation, Finnish Science Foundation (2010)
  • European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) Fellowship (2010)
  • The Alfthan’s prize from the Finnish Chemical Society (2009)

Key Publications (all publications)

Mader SL, Bräuer A, Groll M, Kaila VRI: "Catalytic mechanism and molecular engineering of quinolone biosynthesis in dioxygenase AsqJ". Nature Comm. 2018; 9(1168): 1-8.


Gamiz-Hernandez AP, Jussupow A, Johansson MP, Kaila VRI: "Terminal Electron-Proton Transfer Dynamics coupled to Quinone reduction in Respiratory Complex I". J Am Chem Soc. 2017; 139: 16282-16288.


Suomivuori C-M, Gamiz-Hernandez AP, Sundholm D, Kaila VRI: "Energetics and dynamics of a light-driven sodium-pumping rhodopsin". Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2017; 114: 7043-7048.


Di Luca A, Gamiz-Hernandez AP, Kaila VRI: "Symmetry related proton transfer pathways in respiratory Complex I". Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2017; 114: E6314-E6321.


Gamiz-Hernandez AP, Neycheva IA, Send R, Sundholm D, Kaila VRI: "Protein-Induced Color Shift of Carotenoids in β-Crustacyanin". Angew Chemie Intl Ed. 2015; 54: 11564-11566.