Center for the Physics of Biological Function | an NSF Physics Frontier Center

The Center for the Physics of Biological Function (CPBF), a joint effort between Princeton University and The Graduate Center at CUNY. We are a collection of scientists working at the interface of physics and biology with the goal of creating a physicist’s understanding of living systems: a physics of biological function that connects the myriad details of life, across all scales, to fundamental and universal physical principles. Our center focuses on new scientific opportunities and educational programs, integrating theory and experiment, research and education.


Phase-separated liquid droplets (red) formed in a crosslinked chromatin network (white). Mechanical interactions with chromatin determine the size of droplets

Understanding the phenomena of life means understanding the emergence and integration of essential biological functions. 

Explore our Research


Two students looking through slides

A true unification of the physics of biological function requires educating a new generation of scientists.

Explore our Programs


Group of Research Fellows

CPBF Fellows of 2018-2023

We are searching for Center Fellows, both theorists and experimentalists. Applications for 2024 CPBF fellows are now open!

Apply Now

Biophysics Seminar Series

Canceled. To be re-scheduled: Jasmine Nirody: TBA
Mon, Apr 15, 2024, 12:30 pm1:30 pm
Joseph Henry Room, Jadwin Hall
Amy Shyer: TBA
Mon, Apr 29, 2024, 12:30 pm1:30 pm
Joseph Henry Room, Jadwin Hall


2018 - 2021 APS Abstracts
learn more about current research at the Center, see the work to be presented at the March Meeting of the American Physical Society 2021

Game Theory Cancer Models of Cancer Cell-Stromal Cell Dynamics using Interacting Particle Systems Abstract

Bacterial Route…

ITS Symposia

Artificial Intelligence and Large Language Models
Thu, Apr 25, 2024
Elebash Recital Hall, CUNY Graduate Center (365 Fifth Avenue, NYC)
Microbial Collectives in Action
Fri, May 3, 2024, 9:30 am4:00 pm
Science Center (Room 4102) at the CUNY Graduate Center (365 Fifth Avenue, NYC)


National Science Foundation