Scott McIsaac, PhD

Head of Research

Scott is a scientist and technologist, having made numerous contributions in the fields of synthetic biology, systems biology, and the computational and experimental study of transcriptional regulation.

Scott comes to Foresite from Calico (a Google/Alphabet-funded life sciences company), where he led an independent research laboratory as one of its earliest hires. His scientific contributions at Calico include widely-cited approaches to the genome-wide study and machine learning-based modeling of transcriptional regulation, and improved methodologies for enabling system-level interrogation of the aging process. While at Calico, he participated in various business development activities, establishing academic and corporate partnerships as well as performing diligence for early stage technologies and drug development opportunities. Scott’s prior work in industry includes a fellowship at Amyris, where he was a scientist in the Automated Strain Engineering group.

Scott received his B.A. in Applied Mathematics and Physics from Rice University, his M.A. and Ph.D. from Princeton University as a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow with David Botstein, and his postdoctoral training at the California Institute of Technology as a Fellow of the Life Sciences Research Foundation with Frances Arnold.


  • Life sciences Ph.D. from Princeton University.
  • 10+ years of experience developing new life sciences tools. 25 co-authored publications, including senior author publications in leading journals.
  • 7+ years of industry biotech R&D experience.