UNIST Students Honored with 2024 Asan Foundation Scholarship

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Four exceptional UNIST graduate students have been honored with the prestigious 2024 Asan Foundation Medical Bioscience Scholarship.

Four exceptional UNIST graduate students have been honored with the prestigious 2024 Asan Foundation Medical Bioscience Scholarship, a distinguished accolade bestowed upon the nation’s most outstanding graduate students in medical bioscience. The esteemed recipients of this year’s Asan Foundation Medical Bioscience Scholarship are DoHyun Kim (Department of Chemistry), SuBin Kim (Department of Biological Sciences), JiEun Lee (Department of Biological Sciences), and HeeJin Jun (Department of Biological Sciences).

DoHyun Kim (Advisor: Professor Ja Young Ryu), defies disciplinary boundaries as a chemistry student excelling in the realm of medical life sciences. Kim’s groundbreaking research focuses on eradicating disease cells, particularly cancer, by leveraging the chemical properties of molecular self-assembly. Kim attributes his success to UNIST’s unique double major system, which complements his undergraduate background in life sciences and provides invaluable support for his current research endeavors.

SuBin Kim, mentored by Professor Jayil Lee, has been recognized for his exceptional research prowess in elucidating DNA damage repair mechanisms. Employing cutting-edge single-molecule imaging techniques, Kim identifies the intricate DNA repair processes crucial for combating diseases like cancer and neurological disorders. His goal is to advance gene therapy by uncovering precise recovery mechanisms essential for targeting DNA damage at its root cause.

JiEun Lee, a dedicated graduate student specializing in degenerative brain diseases, is committed to addressing the pressing issue of conditions, such as dementia and Parkinson’s disease in our aging society. With a focus on dopamine neurons and microglia, the brain’s immune cells, Lee aims to pioneer innovative treatments for neurodegenerative disorders. By unraveling the complex interplay between dopamine nerve cells and brain diseases, Lee aspires to contribute significantly to the development of novel therapeutic strategies.

HeeJin Jun is at the forefront of developing a revolutionary recombinant protein-based drug delivery system designed to selectively target receptors overexpressed in cancer cells. By creating nanoproteins tailored to specifically engage with cancer cells, Jun aims to enhance the efficacy of chemotherapy while minimizing adverse effects on healthy tissues. Through her research, Jun envisions advancing personalized cancer treatments that offer enhanced efficacy against a spectrum of cancer types.

The scholarship award ceremony took place at the 1F Auditorium of Asan Institute for Life Sciences (AILS) at Asan Medical Center in Seoul on February 27, 2024. Each recipient will receive a generous scholarship of 20 million won (approximately 27,500 U.S. dollars) annually for up to four years.

Since 2017, the Asan Foundation has been identifying and supporting promising graduate students in related fields to nurture future talent in the medical life science domain. UNIST has consistently produced outstanding scholarship recipients since the program’s inception, with this year marking the selection of four exceptional students, the largest cohort to date. These scholars exemplify UNIST’s commitment to cultivating exceptional researchers in the dynamic field of medical life sciences.

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