Chemistry and Chemical Biology

Making Gas-Powered Cars Obsolete
Synthetic Squid Can Save You From a Sunburn
Revealing Every Enzyme Ever

The Central Science

Chemistry is the central science charting our path of inquiry, guiding us through our understanding of the world around us and revealing what is possible.

Life-changing discoveries of chemistry past have enabled the modern world by impacting everything from food production to medicine.

As new generations of chemists harness the nature of matter, their discoveries will improve our health, our environment, and our lives.  The impact of CRISPR and gene editing on novel medicines, the directed evolution of enzymes and protein design on life-saving vaccines, and the development of renewable energy sources, such as lithium ion batteries, on the preservation of our environment represent just a fraction of the possibilities.

The College of Science chemistry program, through stimulating and supportive real-world preparation and research, will help you navigate your own path to discovery and pursue a meaningful career in any field.

Faculty Research

Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Ondrechen Research Group
Prof. Ondrechen’s research group spans the areas of theoretical and computational chemistry, computational biology, bioinformatics, protein design, and drug discovery. Areas of interest include functional genomics – predicting the biochemical functional roles of gene products (proteins), protei..
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Lee-Parsons Research Laboratory Website
This research group is applying metabolic engineering principles and methodologies to improve the production of important compounds, i.e. critical plant-derived pharmaceuticals or biofuels, from plant cell & tissue cultures and microalgae cultures.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
O'Doherty Group
This research group has been working in two related areas of organic synthesis: carbohydrate synthesis and natural product synthesis.  The unifying theme that connects the research in these two areas is the method of synthesis (asymmetric catalysis) and target selection (anti-cancer, anti-viral an..
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Laboratory for Neglected Disease Drug Discovery
This research program focuses on those areas of research that will impact on treatment of human disease and on areas that will expedite the drug discovery process.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Beuning Lab
The Beuning laboratory at Northeastern is focused on understanding the structure-function-dynamics relationships of proteins and enzymes, with a particular focus on proteins involved in DNA metabolism and DNA damage tolerance.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Biomaterials Design Group
The Biomaterials Design Group at Northeastern University works at the interface of bio-analytical chemistry, materials science, and design. We investigate fundamental mechanisms behind systems in biology and use our understanding to better inform the design new classes of protein-based biomaterials..
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Engen Lab
The Engen Lab uses hydrogen exchange and mass spectrometry (HX MS) as our core technology to probe protein conformation, conformational changes, dynamics, protein folding and the effects of binding.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Zhang Group
The Zhang group develops macromolecular systems to provide answers to important questions in biology and medicine.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
SunnyLand applies protein chemistry, analysis and engineering to biology and medicine.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Manetsch Lab
The Manetsch laboratory addresses various aspects of medicinal chemistry related to optimization of anti-malarial, anti-leishmanial, and anti-bacterial agents., as well as developing and applying LC/MS-based approaches facilitating synthetic and medicinal chemistry.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Theoretical Photochemistry
The Lopez group uses quantum mechanical and machine learning techniques to identify next-generation organic materials for applications in renewable energy and photomedicine. 
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Research Alliance in Science and Engineering (RAISE)
Through integrative education and collaboration between undergraduate chemistry students and faculty mentors, RAISE continues the teaching curriculum beyond the classroom and into the real world.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Budil Lab
Prof. Budil’s group is interested in the physical behavior of macromolecules, including both synthetic polymers and biopolymers such as large proteins. Their principal investigative tool is electron spin resonance (ESR) spectroscopy, including very high-frequency ESR.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Makowski Lab
Image and signal processing as applied to biophysical data designed to answer fundamental questions about the molecular basis of living systems
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Hanson Research Group
Professor Hanson’s research group focuses on the application of synthetic organic chemistry to the development of new diagnostic and therapeutic agents for neoplastic diseases.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Oyinda Oyelaran's Lab
Oyinda Oyelaran is the co-PI of the Chemistry and Chemical Biology department's NSF-REU site program.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Mattos Lab
Research in the Mattos Lab focuses on understanding the rules that govern the recognition, assembly and function of macromolecular complexes.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Kirss's Lab
Kirss's lab's research interests are in synthetic and mechanistic chemistry of iron and ruthenium. Projects are underway in synthesis of new ferrocene derivatives with potential biological activity and kinetics of phosphine substitution in catalytically active ruthenium compounds.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Booth Lab
The Booth lab undertakes drug developing starting with a GPCR structure-based ligand design approach using molecular modeling experiments, followed by synthesis of target ligands and in vitro molecular pharmacology assays to delineate their a nity and function.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Smotkin Lab
The central theme of Prof. Smotkin’s group is the discovery of better materials for clean energy sources and processes through electrolytes and electrocatalytic materials.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Chemical Imaging of Living Systems Institute
The Institute develops imaging tools to highlight chemical processes - enabling clinicians to better diagnose and treat disease.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Barnett Institute of Chemical and Biological Analysis
The Institute was established in 1973 as a center for advanced interdisciplinary research in the chemical analysis sciences at Northeastern University, in the educational hub of Boston, Massachusetts. Today, with over 50 scientists and an $8 million endowment, the Institute is recognized internatio..
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Center for Drug Discovery
The Center for Drug Discovery is dedicated to the discovery of novel medications and the development of approaches and technologies aimed at improving the discovery of new therapeutic drugs. Faculty include: Raymond Booth, Sergiy Tyukhtenko and Jeff Agar
Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center
The Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center is providing a world-class computational infrastructure, indispensible in the increasingly sensor and data-rich environments of modern science and engineering discovery.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Northeastern University Center for Renewable Energy Technology
Northeastern University Center for Renewable Energy Technology focuses on carbon-free technologies which are sustainable from materials and techno-economic point of view.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Biopharmaceutical Analysis Training Lab (BATL)
Directed by Dr. Jared Auclair, BATL is a state-of-the-art facility offering a unique hands-on training opportunity to the pharmaceutical industry in form of affordable, practical and comprehensive courses. Experienced faculty and staff provide in-depth knowledge applicable to the lab environment.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
The Joshi Lab
The group generally works at the intersection of biomaterials science and synthetic biology. A major focus of the group’s research is on Engineered Living Materials, especially in genetically programming microbial cells to secrete and direct the assembly of biopolymeric matrices.
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Clark Lab
The Clark lab builds nanoscale sensors to image and detect signaling chemistry in the body. We are a multidisciplinary team of chemists, engineers, and biologists who are seeking to expand the probes and contrast agents available for imaging. The members of the group work in the areas of sensor syn..
Chemistry and Chemical Biology
The Dong Theoretical and Computational Chemistry Lab
The Dong Lab develops and applies physics-based and data-driven computational methods to understand multiscale processes, from electronic structures to emergent properties. We use such understandings to develop design strategies for molecules, materials, and processes that matter in renewable energ..
The Minds Behind COS Chemistry
Faculty Spotlight
Leila Deravi
Deravi’s team investigate fundamental mechanisms behind systems in biology and use their understanding to better inform the design of new classes of protein-based biomaterials that may interface with or enhance the performance of humans.
Steven Lopez
The Lopez group uses quantum mechanical and machine learning techniques to identify next-generation organic materials for applications in renewable energy and photomedicine.

Degree Options

Coursework and Requirements
A sampling of the types of courses you could take here.
Environmental Geochemistry
CHEM 3410

Offers students who wish to work in the geosciences or environmental science and engineering fields, including on the land, in freshwater, or the oceans, an opportunity to understand the geochemical principles that shape the natural and managed environment. Seeks to provide a context for understanding the natural elemental cycles and environmental problems through studies in atmospheric, terrestrial, freshwater, and marine geochemistry.

Chemical Thermodynamics and Kinetics
CHEM 3401

Traces the development of chemical thermodynamics through the three major laws of thermodymamics. These are applied to thermochemistry, chemical reaction and phase equilibria, and the physical behavior of multicomponent systems. Emphasizes quantitative interpretation of physical measurements.

Organic Chemistry of Drug Design and Development
CHEM 4456

Offers students majoring in chemistry an opportunity to apply the principles gained in two semesters of organic chemistry and chemical biology to a relevant disciplinary context. The discovery, design, and development of biologically active compounds for medical purposes uses knowledge and techniques gained in both organic synthesis and chemical biology. It directs those skills to incorporate specific chemical features into organic compounds to meet biological criteria. As such, it seeks to develop problem-solving skills that are valuable across a range of chemical disciplines and not confined to synthetic organic chemistry alone.

Watch Our Video to Learn More About the COS Chemistry Program

Watch Our Video to Learn More About the COS Chemistry Program

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