GLBRC Spinoffs photo


The start-up companies listed here, all of which bring new technologies and products to the marketplace, have roots in research first conducted at GLBRC.


Early-stage start-up Glucan Biorenewables, LLC is using gamma-Valerolactone (GVL), a plant-based solvent developed at the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center, to help convert biomass into three streams of high-value industrial chemicals.


Hyrax Energy Inc., the first startup company to emerge from the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC), is using an improved method for extracting fermentable sugars from biomass to improve the economics of the cellulosic biofuel pipeline.

Kopess Biomass Solutions

Dr. Kyung-Hwan Han, a professor in Michigan State University’s Department of Horticulture, has partnered with the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center to unlock the genetic regulators of cellulose biosynthesis in plants.

Han’s startup company, Kopess Biomass Solutions, was formed with assistance from the MSU Innovation Center; the company has optioned his discovery.

Lactic Solutions

Early-stage start-up Lactic Solutions uses genetic engineering to convert lactic acid bacteria, the organisms that infect ethanol fermentations, to produce ethanol rather than lactic acid. Additionally, these organisms are engineered to produce compounds that inhibit the contaminating lactic acid bacteria.


Xylome uses newly developed yeast strains to transform hard-to-digest sugars into commercially viable, second-generation ethanol and biodiesel precursors and to synthesize a host of advanced biorenewable products. Xylome specializes in metabolic engineering of nonconventional yeast.