Biotechnology expert Byung-Chun Yoo was appointed associate director of Christiana Care Health System’s Gene Editing Institute of the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute.

Yoo brings more than 18 years of experience leading projects in genome editing, advanced molecular biology and biochemistry to this position.

Yoo will oversee translational research activities centered on the use of gene editing for the treatment of various cancers and inherited diseases. He will also be responsible for developing new collaborative business opportunities. Yoo joins an 18-person team of research scientists, graduate students and post-doctoral fellows at the Gene Editing Institute under the direction of Eric B. Kmiec.

Yoo comes to Christiana Care from Napigen Inc., a Delaware-based genome editing biotech startup, where he served as director of enabling technology, developing CRISPR/CAS9-driven genome engineering technologies and conducting business analytics and strategic planning.

Prior to that, he was a principal investigator in the Genetic Discovery Group at DuPont Pioneer in Wilmington, where he led biochemical and molecular discovery projects as well as early-stage genome editing technology development. He received the inaugural DuPont Knowledge Center Gala Award for Best Productivity Effort of the Year in 2015.

Yoo is a graduate of Korea University in Seoul, Korea, with a Master of Science in biology and a Ph.D. in plant molecular and cellular biology from the University of Florida. Following post-doctoral work, he remained at the University of California, Davis, as a project leader, developing insect biocontrol technology with RNAi machinery.

Throughout his career, Yoo has managed international projects, coordinating multidisciplinary teams of molecular biologists, bioinformaticians and geneticists with forward-thinking approaches. He holds several patents in genetics and gene editing technology and has authored multiple peer-reviewed scientific publications. Yoo is currently an adjunct professor in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences at the University of Delaware in Newark.