Faculty Profile: Kwon, Young Jik

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Faculty Information Lab Information (Packet Type, Course Title, & Department) Location
Kwon, Young Jik
Lab Contact:
Young Jik Kwon
kwonyj@uci.edu
(949) 824-8714
A NANOBIOTECH
Department: SOM - Pharmaceutical Sciences
Engineering Tower 944F

Research Description

Timely, complete, and convenient treatment of many diseases is not yet within reach, although many potent therapeutics have been identified and developed. Successful delivery of therapeutics depends on finding paths toward ideal forms of treatment. In BioTherapeutics Engineering Laboratory (BioTEL) in departments of Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Chemical Engineering and Materials Science tackles this problem by identifying the limitations of current therapeutics and the reasons for those limitations. Target therapeutics are then selected and conjugated in the form of micro- and nanoparticles, using organic chemistry and carrier fabrication tools. BioTEL is currently working to develop drug delivery systems that selectively localize therapeutics in the body, down to the level of cellular compartments, and offer controlled release of therapeutics so that drugs can be delivered only at the desired time. BioTEL employs techniques to immobilize therapeutics, including cancer chemotherapy agents, imaging probes, therapeutic genes and proteins, and cells. Once carriers are localized in a target site through passive and active targeting mechanisms, therapeutics can be triggered to be active by pathological signals. Synthesis of novel carrier materials, innovative fabrication of carriers, elucidation of extracellular and intracellular behaviors of drug/carriers, and development of new drug release mechanisms are the key scientific emphases in BioTEL. Opportunities for undergraduate researchers including nanocarrier synthesis and characterization as well as in vitro and in vivo tests, depending on needs in the lab and qualification of participants

Requirements to Participate

Basic molecular biology and organic chemistry COURSE COMPLETION: Sophomore and juniors are ideal but seniors with previous experience will also be considered. OTHER: Students with intention of a long-term participation will be given high priority. FACULTY MEANS OF EVALUATION FOR COURSE GRADE: Written reports, literature review, presentation in the group meeting, evaluations from graduate co-workers.

Time Commitment per Week

Minimum 10 hrs spread through weekdays and weekends