Peter Mombaerts obtained his M.D. from the Catholic University of Leuven. He then joined the laboratory of Susumu Tonegawa at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he obtained his Ph.D. with a thesis on immunodeficient mice generated by gene targeting. As a postdoc with Richard Axel at Columbia University, he developed a genetic approach to visualize axonal projections of mouse olfactory sensory neurons that express the same odorant receptor gene. From 1995 to 2007 he was a faculty member at The Rockefeller University. In 2008 he moved to Frankfurt, Germany, as director of the newly created Department of Molecular Neurogenetics at the Max Planck Institute of Biophysics, and in 2013 he became the director of the independent Max Planck Research Unit of Neurogenetics. His research interests are the development and function of the mouse olfactory system, and his expertise is genetic manipulation of the mouse.