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Fellows Directory

Christiane Nusslein-Volhard

Dr Christiane Nusslein-Volhard ForMemRS

Foreign Member

Elected: 1990


Christiane Nusslein-Volhard is a geneticist who studies the mechanisms of development. Her early work focussed on zebra fish, but she is best known for her studies of embryonic development in fruit flies, for which she was a joint recipient of the 1995 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

By inducing mutations in fruit flies and observing the effects on their offspring, Christiane’s work has revealed the major events that make up the fruit fly’s embryonic development, as well as the genes that direct cells to form specific body parts. Her work has assisted the study of similar genes in humans, improving our understanding of the causes of congenital disorders.

Alongside the Nobel Prize, Christiane has received numerous awards in recognition of her work, including the 1991 Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research and the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize of the German Research Foundation. Christiane is a member of many prestigious scientific societies, including Leopoldina — the German Academy of Sciences — the US National Academy of Sciences and EMBO.


  • Louis-Jeantet Prize for Medicine

    No citation available for this award.

  • Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine

    Jointly with Edward B. Lewis and Eric F. Wieschaus for their discoveries concerning the genetic control of early embryonic development.