Scientist Spotlight: Jacob Corn

The Corn Lab
The Corn Lab

Name: Jacob Corn

Institution: Institute of Molecular Health Sciences, ETH Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland

Area of expertise: Genome editing, DNA repair mechanisms, genome-wide CRISPR screening, protein/organelle quality control

My work:  

I am the Professor of Genome Biology at ETH Zurich and my research aims to better understand and treat disease through next-generation genome editing technologies. Cells, in their efforts to safeguard their genetic information, use different pathways to sense and repair various DNA damage types, preventing permanent harm. Deficiencies in these pathways contribute to diseases, such as cancers and genetic disorders, including FA. Harnessing DNA repair through the development of CRISPR-Cas effectors is revolutionizing approaches to fundamental biological discovery and holds great promise for curing genetic diseases.

Employing a multidisciplinary approach encompassing technology development and cellular biochemistry, my lab aims to unravel complex cellular characteristics. We collaborate with clinicians and industry groups to translate genome editing approaches towards real world applications. Our recent proof-of-concept study in collaboration with Dr. Paula Rio demonstrated that base editing effectively corrected FA mutations, leading to restored FANCA expression and functional FA pathway in patient-derived cell lines and bone marrow stem cells from FA patients. These findings bring us one step closer to the future clinical implementation of base editing not only in FA, but also in other genetic diseases.

Our ultimate goal is to develop novel, precise and safe strategies for curing genetic diseases through an in-depth understanding of DNA repair and genome editing intersections.

Dr. Corn

What motivates me to work on FA:

The possibility of fundamental research to really make a difference in the lives of people and families affected by FA.

When I’m not working, you could find me:  

Hiking in the mountains with my family.

Categories: Stories

Previous ArticleNext Article