In recent years, UNIST has hosted three IBS campus research centers, led by world-class scientists, thereby capturing the attention of scientists worldwide with its potential to become one of the world’s top 10 science and technology universities by 2030.
Dr. Kyungjae Myung, the senior investigator and section head with tenure from the National Institutes of Health, USA has been selected to head the Center for Genomic Integrity (CGI), launched at the UNIST campus on December 1, 2014.
The Center for Genomic Integrity (CGI) aims to study the Bluepring of life, genome, and its building units, DNA. In particular, he will be investigating how to maintain integrity of genome. The center will be funded by IBS, Korea, thereby receiving USD $100 million for at least 9 years.
According to Dr. Myung, his study can be represented as four mechanisms, 4R as in Replication, Response, Repair, and Recombination. He states, “For organisms to grow up, regenerate, or produce progeny, genome needs to be replicated. However, replication can be challenged by internal or external factors. When such challenges occur, intrachellular response is taking place and repair process engages to recover from such challenges. This allows cells to acquire a new trait.”
Dr. Myung is a world-renowned scientist and has been also appointed as a UNIST Distinguished Professor in recognition of his significant scientific achievements in the field of genomic integrity. He will be conducting research, regarding genome stability and chemotherapeutic application. In addition, his studies of DNA repair pathways are expected to lead the development of therapeutics for many human illnesses, including cancer and diseases of aging.
Dr. Myung states, “Although we, IBS will concentrate on basic research, we hope to contribute to human welfare. We believe our studies of the 4R mechanisms at the molecular level will help to understand carcinogenesis, genetic diseases and aging processes that appear to occur due to defects in the 4R processes.”