Our founding faculty members, whose research supports the advancement of algae biofuel production, represent the following institutions:
Stephen Mayfield, Ph.D., Professor of molecular biology and John Dove Isaacs Chair of Natural Philosophy
Research areas: Gene regulation in eukaryotic algae and the use of this alga for the production of human therapeutic proteins and as a platform for biofuel production. He is also developing molecular tools for algal genetic transformation.
Steve A. Kay, Ph.D., Dean of the Division of Biological Sciences and Richard C. Atkinson Chair in Biological Sciences
Research areas: Implementation of genomic tools to develop photosynthetic microbes for biofuel and bioproduct production
Steven Briggs, Ph.D., Professor of cell and developmental biology
Research areas: Use of genomic analysis of plants and animals, including the use of proteomics to identify regulatory aspects of lipid biogenesis in algae
Susan Golden, Ph.D., Professor of molecular biology
Research areas: Cyanobacterial genetics and molecular biology, including investigations into light-activated gene expression, development of the photosynthetic apparatus, circadian-regulated gene expression, and high-value bioproduct production
Mike Burkart, Ph.D., Associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry
Research areas: The Burkart laboratory follows a general program of developing systems for the study of natural product regulation and production.
James W. Golden, Ph.D., Professor of molecular biology
Research areas: Dr. Golden is one of the leading scientists investigating the genetics and molecular biology of nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria and metabolic engineering of cyanobacteria for the production of biofuels.
Bernard O. Palsson, Ph.D., Galetti professor of bioengineering and adjunct professor of medicine
Research areas: Reconstruction of genome-scale biochemical reaction networks, and the development of mathematical analysis procedures for genome-scale models with current emphasis on cellular metabolism and transcriptional regulation in E. coli, yeast, and algae
Jonathan Shurin, Ph.D., Associate professor of ecology, behavior and evolution
Research areas: Control of productivity and diversity in algal communities by zooplankton consumers and the supply of limiting nutrients, the flow of energy and materials from algae to their natural enemies and the factors that allow grazers to exert strong impact on their resources or new species to invade communities.
Robert "Skip" Pomeroy, Ph.D., Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
Research areas: Dr. Pomeroy‘s research interests involve the application of analytical chemistry to samples relating to environmental, forensic and materials science applications. Another area of activity involves the production of renewable biofuels.
Eric Allen, Ph,D., Assistant professor of marine biology and molecular biology
Research areas: Environmental genomics and microbial oceanography and ecology, with an emphasis on the genetic structure of microbial populations. He also investigates the molecular genetics and ecological physiology of unique marine source lipids (e.g., microbial omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids).
William Gerwick, Ph.D., Professor of oceanography and pharmaceutical sciences
Research areas: Biosynthesis of marine natural products and biofuel production by cultured marine microalgae. He also works on molecular genetics of cyanobacterial natural products biosynthesis and on the molecular evolution of natural product pathways in marine cyanobacteria.
Bianca Brahamsha, Ph.D., Research biologist
Research areas: Molecular analysis of the physiology of marine cyanobacteria of the genus Synechococcus, and isolation of new algal species for biofuel production
Mark Hildebrand, Ph.D., Research professor
Research areas: Gene expression in marine diatoms and on the use of diatoms for lipid production as a biofuel source. He also works on the development of nuclear transformation technologies in diatoms.
B. Greg Mitchell, Ph.D., Research professor
Research areas: Algae commercial applications, including quantification of yields of bioenergy molecules in the light-temperature-nutrient matrix that regulates algal physiology. He also uses numerical modeling of algal growth and biomass yields for designing photobioreactors that optimize commercial yields.
Brian Palenik, Ph.D., Professor of marine biology
Research areas: Ecology, physiology, and genomics of marine microalgae focusing on cyanobacteria, small green algae such as Ostreococcus, and the prymensiophyte Emiliania huxleyi. He is working to bring novel species from these groups into laboratory culture for biofuel production.
Senyon Choe, Ph.D., Professor and director of structural biology laboratory
Research areas: Re-engineering microalgae for coproducts. His laboratory is currently focused on re-engineering Chlamy for natural and engineered enzymes to enhance food products in collaboration with joint Center for Biosciences, Incheon, Korea.
John J. Love, Ph.D., Associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry
Research areas: Protein design and engineering. His laboratory is currently focused on re-engineering natural enzymes to enhance the oil extraction process from algae and other carbon-neutral sources of biofuels.