In 1988, Utrecht University and the Netherlands Foundation for Chemical Research founded the Bijvoet Center for Biomolecular Research as a joint research institute to create a center for research and expertise in structural biology with an internationally recognized academic staff and an advanced instrumental and computational infrastructure. Nowadays, the Bijvoet Center has a staff of around 150 people, including about 10 full professors, 20 senior researchers, 50 postdocs and 50 PhD students.
The current scientific director of the institute is prof. dr. Piet Gros, who received the NWO Spinoza Prize in 2010 for the elucidation of the threedimensional structure of the C3 protein, which plays a central role in the complement system and contributes to innate immunity. The institute is internationally well-recognized, and operates as the Dutch node of the ESFRI project Instruct, which tries to make structural biology techniques available to the broader scientific community. Over the past years, the Bijvoet Center has been very successful in attracting funding from NWO and the European Union.
For over 20 years, the NMR spectrocopy group has played an important role in the coordination of biomolecular NMR efforts at the European level, by serving as an NMR facility for European scientists. Since 2005, the Biomolecular Mass Spectrometry and Proteomics group has hosted the Netherlands Proteomics Centre, and in 2012 the institute received funding to continue their efforts in proteomics as part of the Dutch National Roadmap for Research Infrastructures. Among the extensive NMR facilities available at the institute is also a unique solid state DNP-NMR spectrometer and in 2012 the institute acquired funding to obtain one of the world's first 1.2 GHz NMR spectrometers. In 2012, the Bijvoet Center was the first institute in the Life Sciences in Europe to receive the prestigious Innovative Doctoral Programme grant from the Marie Curie Initial Training Network programme of the 7th Framework Programme of the European Union and in 2014, the center was among the founding members of the Institute for Chemical Immunology, funded with an NWO Gravitation grant.