Narendra Maheshri, raised in the Houston area, has a BS in Chemical Engineering and Biology from MIT and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley. In his postdoctoral studies at UC San Francisco and Harvard, he became interested in systems biology and gene regulation. He was an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering at MIT, and currently is a Visiting Assistant Professor at MIT, where his research focuses on dynamics and variability in gene regulation and function. Ginkgo BioWorks, located in Boston, was founded in 2008. Its mission is to make biology easy to engineer: "Only when biological engineering is fast and predictable will we fulfill the potential of biological technologies to revolutionize the provision of food, medicine, energy, and materials." The company is currently working on a project with DARPA to treat antibiotic-resistant germs.