Jay Keasling, Ph.D.

Jay Keasling is a professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering and the Department of Bioengineering at University of California, Berkeley, a senior faculty scientist and Director of the Physical Biosciences Division at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and Director of the Synthetic Biology Engineering Research Center. Keasling is Chief Executive Officer of the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI), a partnership between three national laboratories (Lawrence Berkelely National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratory), major public and private universities (UC Berkeley, UC Davis, Stanford), industry, and federal agencies. This institute will develop the basic science and technology to create an array of environmentally friendly biofuels using plant biomass and microbes. JBEI will focus its scientific effort in three key areas: feedstock production, deconstruction, and fuels synthesis. JBEI will employ an opportunistic “start-up company” approach, partnering with industry, to develop new science and technologies that address the most challenging steps in industrial bioenergy processing.