Universiteit Leiden

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Nathaniel Martin

Professor Biological chemistry

Prof.dr. N.I. Martin
+31 71 527 2954

The Martin group is part of the Institute of Biology Leiden (IBL) at Leiden University. We apply (bio)organic chemistry and chemical biology-based approaches to address biologically interesting and medically relevant questions. Our research interests are broad and include investigating new molecular strategies for combatting infectious disease as well as developing innovative tools with which to study epigenetic processes.

The Martin group is comprised of a number of Postdocs, PhDs, and Master/Bachelor student researchers. We also regularly host foreign students who visit Leiden for a research internship abroad (for example Erasmus students). Feel free to contact us if you are interested in joining the group.

More information about Nathaniel Martin

Brief summary of research over last 5 years

Prof. Martin leads an independent research group with a major focus on applying bioorganic chemistry in pursuit of novel anti-infectives and molecular tools to study epigenetic processes. In recent years he has succeeded in acquiring external research funding, most notably the ERC Consolidator Grant (€2,0M) and the NWO VIDI grant (€800k, both awarded to the top 10% of researchers in their peer group). Recent output from the Martin group includes contributions made to understanding fundamental principles of antibiotic mechanism (MedChemComm 2018, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2017, Biochemistry 2016, J. Med. Chem. 2016), bacterial replication (PLoS ONE 2016, J. Biol. Chem. 2014), and antibiotic resistance (ACS Infect. Dis. 2018, Mol. Cell. Proteomics 2018.  ACS Infect. Dis. 2017). The group has also developed new synthetic strategies for the preparation of a range of novel anti-infective compounds (Molecules 2018, Chem. Sci. 2017, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2015, J. Med. Chem. 2014) and biologically active peptides (ChemBioChem 2018, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2017, Org. Biomol. Chem. 2014). More information about the group and our research can be found at our website.

International visibility, activities, prizes, scholarships etc.

Prof. Martin conducted his PhD studies at the University of Alberta (Canada) under the guidance of Prof. John Vederas. Upon completing his PhD in 2004 Martin took up a postdoctoral position at UC Berkeley (USA) working in the group of Prof. Michael Marletta where he sharpened his biochemical skills. In the final year of his postdoc at Berkeley Martin applied for and was awarded the highly competitive young investigators “VENI” grant from the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). With this grant Martin began my career in Utrecht in 2007 as an independent junior principle investigator. As of July 1, 2018, Martin took up a new appointment as Full Professor of Biological Chemistry at the Institute of Biology Leiden (IBL). In recognition of his research accomplishments Prof. Martin has received a number of personal grants (see previous section) and in 2016 was also named as one of the top three young medicinal chemists in Europe (in voting for the EFMC Prize Young Medicinal Chemists in Academia). In addition to his research, Prof. Martin is also a dedicated teacher and was voted ‘Lecturer of the Year’ for 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 by the Utrecht University Molecular Life Science undergraduate students.

Professor Biological chemistry

  • Wiskunde en Natuurwetenschappen
  • Instituut Biologie Leiden
  • IBL Biotechnology & Health

Work address

Sylviusweg 72
2333 BE Leiden
Room number 6.5.15



  • Kaveel Pharmaceuticals co-founder
  • Various publishers ad hoc referee for numerous scientific journals

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