Faculty Profile: Martin Chalfie

Martin Chalfie

University Professor; Former Chair of the Department of Biological Sciences; Shared 2008 Nobel Prize in Chemistry


“The very best undergraduates, and Columbia has many of these students, are just fun to work with. They are eager to learn and get excited about the material, whether in class or the lab. Sharing the excitement of discovery is one of the great joys of doing research, and introducing undergraduates to this excitement is very rewarding. I also enjoy watching students become independent.”


In 2008, the Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to Professor Chalfie for the introduction of green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a biological marker. GFP has become one of the essential research tools in the biological and biomedical sciences. Research in his laboratory is centered around nerve cell development and function.

Undergraduate Courses Taught

  • Biological Research Skills
  • Genetics