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Gordon J. Getzinger, PhD

Title/s:  Assistant Professor

Specialty Area: Environmental Chemistry

Office #:  BVM Hall 210

Phone: 773-508-2948


CV Link: Getzinger, Gordon CV


Gordon Getzinger is an environmental chemist studying the occurrence and fate of anthropogenic chemicals in natural and engineered systems. Before joining the SES faculty in 2023, he was a research scientist at Biobot Analytics leveraging wastewater-based epidemiology to address the opioid epidemic, a consultant at Exponent supporting environmental forensic investigations and chemical fate assessments, and a research scientist with the North Carolina PFAS Testing Network. Additionally, he has held adjunct/lecturer appointments in the Chemistry Department at Tufts University and the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at MIT.  He completed his post-doctoral training with the Environmental Chemistry Group at ETH Zurich and his PhD with Professor Lee Ferguson at the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University.  



  • PhD, Environment, Duke University, 2016  
  • BS, Environmental Science, Loyola University Chicago, 2010 
  • BA, Chemistry, Loyola University Chicago, 2010  

Research Interests

Getzinger is interested in understanding the environmental occurrence and fate of anthropogenic chemicals. In particular, he studies the sources, distribution, and (bio)chemical transformations of organic pollutants in the natural and built aquatic environment. He develops analytical chemistry tools to detect trace-level contaminants in environmental media and applies those techniques to laboratory and field studies. His goal is to develop mechanistic insights into contaminant fate processes that inform policies and technologies that protect human and ecological health. 

Courses Taught

  • ENVS 274: Chemistry of the Environment  
  • ENVS 275: Chemistry of the Environment Lab  


Selected Publications

Muir, D. C. G.; Getzinger, G. J.; McBride, M.; Ferguson, P. L. How Many Chemicals in Commerce Have Been Analyzed in Environmental Media? A 50 Year Bibliometric Analysis. Environ. Sci. Technol. 2023, 57 (25), 9119–9129. 

Getzinger, G.; Higgins, C.; Ferguson, P. Structure Database and In Silico Spectral Library for Comprehensive Suspect Screening of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFASs) in Environmental Media by High-Resolution Mass Spectrometry. Analytical Chemistry 2021, 93 (5), 2820–2827. 

Getzinger, G.; Ferguson, P. High-Throughput Trace-Level Suspect Screening for Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances in Environmental Waters by Peak-Focusing Online Solid Phase Extraction and High-Resolution Mass Spectrometry. ACS ES&T WATER 2021, 1 (5), 1240–1251. 

Getzinger, G. J.; Ferguson, P. L. Illuminating the Exposome with High-Resolution Accurate-Mass Mass Spectrometry and Nontargeted Analysis. Current Opinion in Environmental Science & Health 2020, 15, 49–56. 

Li, H.; Getzinger, G.; Ferguson, P.; Orihuela, B.; Zhu, M.; Rittschof, D. Effects of Toxic Leachate from Commercial Plastics on Larval Survival and Settlement of the Barnacle Amphibalanus Amphitrite. Environmental Science and Technology 2016, 50 (2), 924–931. 

Getzinger, G.; O’Connor, M.; Hoelzer, K.; Drollette, B.; Karatum, O.; Deshusses, M.; Ferguson, P.; Elsner, M.; Plata, D. Natural Gas Residual Fluids: Sources, Endpoints, and Organic Chemical Composition after Centralized Waste Treatment in Pennsylvania. Environmental Science and Technology 2015, 49 (14), 8347–8355. 

Fang, M.; Getzinger, G.; Cooper, E.; Clark, B.; Garner, L.; Di Giulio, R.; Ferguson, P.; Stapleton, H. Effect-Directed Analysis of Elizabeth River Porewater: Developmental Toxicity in Zebrafish (Danio Rerio). Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 2014, 33 (12), 2767–2774.