Philippe Cluzel

Philippe Cluzel

  • Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology and Gordon McKay Professor of Applied Physics


Phillipe Cluzel seeks studies the behavior and bodily structure of cells and organisms by applying the principles of physics and engineering to biological systems.

He pioneered the macro-manipulation of individual molecules of DNA and examined the system governing migration of E. coli bacteria towards chemical attractants—a process known as chemotaxis—as a model for the study of other cellular signaling. Cluzel has also developed novel techniques to track single molecules, eavesdropping on the activity of individual living cells in real time.

He received a Ph.D. in Biophysics-Physics from the Institut Marie Curie in Paris in and his master’s and undergraduate degrees in physics from Paris VI University.

Prior to his appointment at Harvard, Cluzel was Associate Professor, Institute for Biophysical Dynamics, The James Franck Institute, Department of Physics at the University of Chicago, where he has been on the faculty since 2000. He was a research associate at Princeton University from 1996 to 2000.

Cluzel’s awards include Cancer Research Foundation Young Investigator Award and a postdoctoral fellowship from the NSF Program in Mathematics and Biology.

Contact Information

Office:Northwest Building 435.30
Office Phone:(617) 384-9447
Lab Name:Phillipe Cluzel Lab

Primary Teaching Area

Positions & Employment

Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

  • Gordon McKay Professor of Applied Physics
Harvard Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology