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The 10th KINC Fusion Research Awardees
The KAIST Institute for NanoCentury (KINC) recognized three distinguished researchers whose convergence studies made significant impacts. The KINC presented the 10th KINC Fusion Research Awards during a ceremony that took place at KAIST’s main campus in Daejeon on May 19. This year’s ‘best’ convergence research award went to a joint research group led by Professor Hee Tak Kim from the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Professor Sang Ouk Kim from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. Their research, featured in the December 27 issue of Advanced Materials as a front cover article last year, introduced the world’s first high-energy efficiency, membraneless, flowless, zinc-bromine battery. This study, in which research professor Gyoung Hwa Jeong, postdoctoral researcher Yearin Byun, and PhD candidate Ju-Hyuck Lee took part as co-lead authors, is deemed as an example of a best practice in convergence research in which two groups’ respective expertise in the fields of carbon materials and electrochemical analysis created a synergistic effect. Professor Bumjoon Kim from the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering was also recognized for having published the most interdisciplinary research papers on polymer electronics and nanomaterials at home and abroad. Professor Hee-Tae Jung, the Director of KINC and the host of the KINC Fusion Research Awards, said, “The KINC is happy to announce the 10th awardees in nano-fusion research this year. Since convergence is crucial for making revolutionary changes, the importance of convergence studies should be recognized. Our institute will spare no effort to create a research environment suitable for convergence studies, which will be crucial for making a significant difference.” The KINC was established in June 2006 under the KAIST Institute with the mission of facilitating convergence studies by tearing down boarders among departments and carrying out interdisciplinary joint research. Currently, the institute is comprised of approximately 90 professors from 13 departments. It aims to become a hub of university institutes for nano-fusion research. (END)
What Fuels a “Domino Effect” in Cancer Drug Resistance?
KAIST researchers have identified mechanisms that relay prior acquired resistance to the first-line chemotherapy to the second-line targeted therapy, fueling a “domino effect” in cancer drug resistance. Their study featured in the February 7 edition of Science Advances suggests a new strategy for improving the second-line setting of cancer treatment for patients who showed resistance to anti-cancer drugs. Resistance to cancer drugs is often managed in the clinic by chemotherapy and targeted therapy. Unlike chemotherapy that works by repressing fast-proliferating cells, targeted therapy blocks a single oncogenic pathway to halt tumor growth. In many cases, targeted therapy is engaged as a maintenance therapy or employed in the second-line after front-line chemotherapy. A team of researchers led by Professor Yoosik Kim from the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and the KAIST Institute for Health Science and Technology (KIHST) has discovered an unexpected resistance signature that occurs between chemotherapy and targeted therapy. The team further identified a set of integrated mechanisms that promotes this kind of sequential therapy resistance. “There have been multiple clinical accounts reflecting that targeted therapies tend to be least successful in patients who have exhausted all standard treatments,” said the first author of the paper Mark Borris D. Aldonza. He continued, “These accounts ignited our hypothesis that failed responses to some chemotherapies might speed up the evolution of resistance to other drugs, particularly those with specific targets.” Aldonza and his colleagues extracted large amounts of drug-resistance information from the open-source database the Genomics of Drug Sensitivity in Cancer (GDSC), which contains thousands of drug response data entries from various human cancer cell lines. Their big data analysis revealed that cancer cell lines resistant to chemotherapies classified as anti-mitotic drugs (AMDs), toxins that inhibit overacting cell division, are also resistant to a class of targeted therapies called epidermal growth factor receptor-tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs). In all of the cancer types analyzed, more than 84 percent of those resistant to AMDs, representatively ‘paclitaxel’, were also resistant to at least nine EGFR-TKIs. In lung, pancreatic, and breast cancers where paclitaxel is often used as a first-line, standard-of-care regimen, greater than 92 percent showed resistance to EGFR-TKIs. Professor Kim said, “It is surprising to see that such collateral resistance can occur specifically between two chemically different classes of drugs.” To figure out how failed responses to paclitaxel leads to resistance to EGFR-TKIs, the team validated co-resistance signatures that they found in the database by generating and analyzing a subset of slow-doubling, paclitaxel-resistant cancer models called ‘persisters’. The results demonstrated that paclitaxel-resistant cancers remodel their stress response by first becoming more stem cell-like, evolving the ability to self-renew to adapt to more stressful conditions like drug exposures. More surprisingly, when the researchers characterized the metabolic state of the cells, EGFR-TKI persisters derived from paclitaxel-resistant cancer cells showed high dependencies to energy-producing processes such as glycolysis and glutaminolysis. “We found that, without an energy stimulus like glucose, these cells transform to becoming more senescent, a characteristic of cells that have arrested cell division. However, this senescence is controlled by stem cell factors, which the paclitaxel-resistant cancers use to escape from this arrested state given a favorable condition to re-grow,” said Aldonza. Professor Kim explained, “Before this research, there was no reason to expect that acquiring the cancer stem cell phenotype that dramatically leads to a cascade of changes in cellular states affecting metabolism and cell death is linked with drug-specific sequential resistance between two classes of therapies.” He added, “The expansion of our work to other working models of drug resistance in a much more clinically-relevant setting, perhaps in clinical trials, will take on increasing importance, as sequential treatment strategies will continue to be adapted to various forms of anti-cancer therapy regimens.” This study was supported by the Basic Science Research Program of the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2016R1C1B2009886), and the KAIST Future Systems Healthcare Project (KAISTHEALTHCARE42) funded by the Korean Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT). Undergraduate student Aldonza participated in this research project and presented the findings as the lead author as part of the Undergraduate Research Participation (URP) Program at KAIST. < Figure 1. Schematic overview of the study. > < Figure 2. Big data analysis revealing co-resistance signatures between classes of anti-cancer drugs. > Publication: Aldonza et al. (2020) Prior acquired resistance to paclitaxel relays diverse EGFR-targeted therapy persistence mechanisms. Science Advances, Vol. 6, No. 6, eaav7416. Available online at http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aav7416 Profile: Prof. Yoosik Kim, MA, PhD firstname.lastname@example.org https://qcbio.kaist.ac.kr/ Assistant Professor Bio Network Analysis Laboratory Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) http://kaist.ac.kr Daejeon, Republic of Korea Profile: Mark Borris D. Aldonza email@example.com Undergraduate Student Department of Biological Sciences Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) http://kaist.ac.kr Daejeon, Republic of Korea (END)
Highly Uniform and Low Hysteresis Pressure Sensor to Increase Practical Applicability
< Professor Steve Park (left) and the First Author Mr. Jinwon Oh (right) > Researchers have designed a flexible pressure sensor that is expected to have a much wider applicability. A KAIST research team fabricated a piezoresistive pressure sensor of high uniformity with low hysteresis by chemically grafting a conductive polymer onto a porous elastomer template. The team discovered that the uniformity of pore size and shape is directly related to the uniformity of the sensor. The team noted that by increasing pore size and shape variability, the variability of the sensor characteristics also increases. Researchers led by Professor Steve Park from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering confirmed that compared to other sensors composed of randomly sized and shaped pores, which had a coefficient of variation in relative resistance change of 69.65%, their newly developed sensor exhibited much higher uniformity with a coefficient of variation of 2.43%. This study was reported in Small as the cover article on August 16. Flexible pressure sensors have been actively researched and widely applied in electronic equipment such as touch screens, robots, wearable healthcare devices, electronic skin, and human-machine interfaces. In particular, piezoresistive pressure sensors based on elastomer‐conductive material composites hold significant potential due to their many advantages including a simple and low-cost fabrication process. Various research results have been reported for ways to improve the performance of piezoresistive pressure sensors, most of which have been focused on increasing the sensitivity. Despite its significance, maximizing the sensitivity of composite-based piezoresistive pressure sensors is not necessary for many applications. On the other hand, sensor-to-sensor uniformity and hysteresis are two properties that are of critical importance to realize any application. The importance of sensor-to-sensor uniformity is obvious. If the sensors manufactured under the same conditions have different properties, measurement reliability is compromised, and therefore the sensor cannot be used in a practical setting. In addition, low hysteresis is also essential for improved measurement reliability. Hysteresis is a phenomenon in which the electrical readings differ depending on how fast or slow the sensor is being pressed, whether pressure is being released or applied, and how long and to what degree the sensor has been pressed. When a sensor has high hysteresis, the electrical readings will differ even under the same pressure, making the measurements unreliable. Researchers said they observed a negligible hysteresis degree which was only 2%. This was attributed to the strong chemical bonding between the conductive polymer and the elastomer template, which prevents their relative sliding and displacement, and the porosity of the elastomer that enhances elastic behavior. “This technology brings forth insight into how to address the two critical issues in pressure sensors: uniformity and hysteresis. We expect our technology to play an important role in increasing practical applications and the commercialization of pressure sensors in the near future,” said Professor Park. This work was conducted as part of the KAIST‐funded Global Singularity Research Program for 2019, and also supported by the KUSTAR‐KAIST Institute. Figure 1. Image of a porous elastomer template with uniform pore size and shape (left), Graph showing high uniformity in the sensors’ performance (right). Figure 2. Hysteresis loops of the sensor at different pressure levels (left), and after a different number of cycles (right). Figure 3. The cover page of Small Journal, Volume 15, Issue 33. Publication: Jinwon Oh, Jin‐Oh Kim, Yunjoo Kim, Han Byul Choi, Jun Chang Yang, Serin Lee, Mikhail Pyatykh, Jung Kim, Joo Yong Sim, and Steve Park. 2019. Highly Uniform and Low Hysteresis Piezoresistive Pressure Sensors Based on Chemical Grafting of Polypyrrole on Elastomer Template with Uniform Pore Size. Small. Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KgaA, Weinheim, Germany, Volume No. 15, Issue No. 33, Full Paper No. 201901744, 8 pages. https://doi.org/10.1002/smll.201901744 Profile: Prof. Steve Park, MS, PhD firstname.lastname@example.org http://steveparklab.kaist.ac.kr/ Assistant Professor Organic and Nano Electronics Laboratory Department of Materials Science and Engineering Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) http://kaist.ac.kr Daejeon 34141, Korea Profile: Mr. Jinwon Oh, MS email@example.com http://steveparklab.kaist.ac.kr/ Researcher Organic and Nano Electronics Laboratory Department of Materials Science and Engineering Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) http://kaist.ac.kr Daejeon 34141, Korea Profile: Prof. Jung Kim, MS, PhD firstname.lastname@example.org http://medev.kaist.ac.kr/ Professor Biorobotics Laboratory Department of Mechanical Engineering Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) http://kaist.ac.kr Daejeon 34141, Korea Profile: Joo Yong Sim, PhD email@example.com Researcher Bio-Medical IT Convergence Research Department Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) https://www.etri.re.krDaejeon 34129, Korea (END)
The 8th KINC Fusion Research Awardees
The KAIST Institute for NanoCentury held the 8th KINC Fusion Research Award in order to encourage professors’ convergence studies and instill students’ willingness to research. The award ceremony took place in the KI Building at KAIST on March 13. The KINC Fusion Research Award selects the most outstanding convergence studies among research undertaken last year, and awards researchers who participated in that research. The 8th KINC Fusion Research Award went to Professor Yoon Sung Nam from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and Professor Inkyu Park from the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Their research reported the spontaneous self-biomineralization of palladium (Pd) ions on a filamentous virus to form ligand-free Pd nanowires without reducing reagents or using additional surface stabilizers (Title: Virus-Templated Self-Mineralization of Ligand-Free Colloidal Palladium Nanostructures for High Surface Activity and Stability, Advanced Functional Materials (2017)). Professor Hee-Tae Jung, the Director of KAIST Institute for the NanoCentury and the host of the KINC Fusion Research Award said, “Convergence will be the crucial keyword that will lead to revolutionary change. Hence, the importance of convergence study should be improved. We will put every effort into creating a research environment for increasing convergence study. The KAIST Institute for the NanoCentury was established in June 2006 under the KAIST Institute with a mission of creating convergence study by tearing down boarders among departments and carrying out interdisciplinary joint research. Currently, approximately 90 professors from 14 departments participate the institute. It aims to become a hub of university institutes for nano-fusion research.
KAIST and Audi Korea Sign a Memorandum of Understanding to Establish a Startup Incubator
For the next five years, Audi Korea will provide USD 250,000 for the startup program. KAIST recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Audi Korea to establish a student-led startup program, the Audi-KAIST Innovation Lounge, to promote design and product development on May 19, 2015, at the KAIST Institute of Entrepreneurship on campus. Directed by Professor Sang-Min Bae of the Industrial Design Department (IDD), the Audi-KAIST Innovation Lounge will operate a global business incubator where IDD undergraduate and graduate students cultivate their entrepreneurship skills and explore business opportunities to develop commercially-applicable product designs. Audi Korea will invest USD 250,000 in the Innovation Lounge project for the next five years. Students will receive support from the Lounge to turn their ideas, class assignments, and graduation theses into business products through a full cycle of the product development process such as inquiry, prototype development, and commercialization. The Lounge will also provide students with mentoring services from industry professionals and experts who can assist the students in finding design solutions and building prototypes using 3D printers. The Dean of IDD, Kun-Pyo Lee, said, “Audi has been known for its initiatives which blend technological innovations into design. Likewise, our department offers students an integrative approach to design education and research which incorporates human factors and technology as important features in the design process. I believe that the Audi-KAIST Innovation Lounge will help us lead such efforts in the future.” Professor Bae added, “This MOU is quite significant because it shows an excellent collaboration between academia and industry. Ideas created in universities should not be left to languish as just an idea or research. Rather, they should be utilized as ways to serve the needs of our society, and to do so, it is important for the government and companies to pay more attention to these interactions taking place between academia and private sectors.” The Head of Marketing at Audi Korea, Jorg Dietzel, said, “As seen in our corporate slogan, "Advancement through Technology," Audi has grown through numerous technological innovations. I hope Audi Korea can contribute to the support of KAIST students from the Industrial Design Department to realize their dreams as future entrepreneurs and bring more innovative ideas to their field.” Picture: Jorg Dietzel (fifth from the left), the Head of Marketing at Audi Korea, and Kun-Pyo Lee (sixth from the left), the Dean of Industrial Design Department, KAIST, pose together right after signing an agreement to create the Audi-KAIST Innovation Lounge on May 19, 2015.
Extracting Light from Graphite: Core Technology of Graphene Quantum Dots Display Developed
Professor Seokwoo Jeon of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Professor Yong-Hoon Cho of the Department of Physics, and Professor Seunghyup Yoo of the Department of Electrical Engineering announced that they were able to develop topnotch graphene quantum dots from graphite. Using the method of synthesizing graphite intercalation compound from graphite with salt and water, the research team developed graphene quantum dots in an ecofriendly way. The quantum dots have a diameter of 5 nanometers with their sizes equal and yield high quantum efficiency. Unlike conventional quantum dots, they are not comprised of toxic materials such as lead or cadmium. As the quantum dots can be developed from materials which can be easily found in the nature, researchers look forward to putting these into mass production at low cost. The research team also discovered a luminescence mechanism of graphene quantum dots and confirmed the possibility of commercial use by developing quantum dot light-emitting diodes with brightness of 1,000 cd/m2, which is greater than that of cellphone displays. Professor Seokwoo Jeon said, “Although quantum dot LEDs have a lower luminous efficiency than existing ones, their luminescent property can be further improved” and emphasized that “using quantum dot displays will allow us to develop not only paper-thin displays but also flexible ones.” Sponsored by Graphene Research Center in KAIST Institute for NanoCentury, the research finding was published online in the April 20th issue of Advanced Optical Materials. Picture 1: Graphene quantum dots and their synthesis Picture 2: Luminescence mechanism of graphene quantum dots Picture 3: Structure of graphene quantum dots LED and its emission
KAIST held an opening ceremony for the completion of KAIST Institute Building.
A Korean American businessman and his wife, Byiung Jun Park and Chunghi Hong, donated 10 million USD for the construction of the building. KAIST hosted an opening ceremony on May 11, 2010 for the new addition to its campus, called the Chunghi & Byiung Jun (BJ) Park KAIST Institute Building. The KI Building will serve as a hub for creative multidisciplinary researches. A Korean American businessman and his wife made a considerable contribution for the construction of the building, worth 10 million USD. KAIST called the building Byiung Jun (BJ) Park and Chunghi Hong in recognition of their contribution. Chairman Park was the founder of the Merchandise Testing Laboratory, a leading textile quality control multinational. It took 19 months to finish the construction of the KI Building with a total cost of 36 billion Korean won. The building consists of one basement and five ground floors. At the basement, there are clean room and equipment storage room; on the 2nd and 3rd floors, conference and exhibition halls; and on the rest of the floors, research labs and administration offices are to be located. KAIST’s eight integral research institutes will be placed inside the building: the BioCentury; Information Technology Convergence; Design of Complex Systems; Entertainment Engineering; the NanoCentury; Eco-Energy; Urban Space and Systems; and Optical Science and Technology. Approximately 230 professors from 25 departments of various academic fields will make the KI Building home for study and research. The KI Building will play a great role in producing world-class convergence research works by KAIST researchers and professors, thereby making a contribution to the improvement of national competitiveness. Vice President of KI Building, Sang-Soo Kim, said, “There has been no such place for us to concentrate research manpower and equipment scattered around the campus. By having all the necessary resources at one place will allow us to conduct convergence researches more efficiently and effectively. I’d like to express my appreciation for the Ministry of Education and Science and Technology as well as Chairman Byiung Jun (BJ) Park, who gave us tremendous supports in the process of constructing the KI Building.” “The building’s inside has a unique office structure, getting rid of walls or partitions between institutes or departments, to stimulate an environment conducive to convergence researches. We hope to present a new model for creative multidisciplinary researches through a selective and focused approach to be facilitated by institutes at the KI Building,” added by the vice president.
KAIST Professors Article Featured as Cover Thesis of Biotechnology Journal
An article authored by a research team of Prof. Sang-yup Lee at the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Dr. Jin-Hwan Park at the KAIST Institute for the BioCentury has been featured as the cover thesis of the August 2008 issue of Trends in Biotechnology. The paper, titled "General strategy for strain improvement by means of systems metabolic engineering," focuses on the application of systems biology for the development of strains and illustrates future prospects. Trends in Biotechnology, published by Cell Press, is one of the most prestigious review journals in the field. Jin-Hwan Park, the primary author of the research thesis, said that the KAIST team"s research work was expected to provide substantial help to researchers involved in biotechnology industry. The strategy has been established on the basis of the experiences gained in the actual microbial production process using the systems biology methods which his research team has recently worked on, Prof. Park said.
KAIST Holds Symposium on Metabolic Engineering
The KAIST Institute for Bio-Century held a symposium on metabolic engineering at the auditorium of the KAIST"s Applied Engineering Bldg. on Thursday, Feb. 14, in cooperation with the BK21 Chemical Engineering Research Team. The symposium focused on researches on bio-refinery program and bio-energy production in connection with steep hikes in oil prices and worsening environmental problems, including global warming. Seven Korean experts presented their views on metabolic engineering strategies to effectively produce bio-energy and biofuel and the latest research trends. Among the speakers, Prof. Lee Sang-yup, co-head of the KAIST Institute for Bio-Century, spoke on the theme of "Metabolic Engineering for Bio-refinery and Bio-energy. The symposium provided an opportunity to take a glimpse into the latest research trends of metabolic engineering technology. Metabolic engineering technology is crucial to producing chemicals, energy and other substances from renewable biomass materials in a departure from heavy reliance on crude oil.
Prof. Lee Listed on Marquis Who's Who
Professor Lee Ji-hyun of the Graduate School of Culture Technology at KAIST was registered to Marquis Who"s Who, known as one of the world"s three leading biographical dictionaries. Prof. Lee"s biography was published in the 25th anniversary edition of "Marquis Who"s Who in the World 2008." Lee"s research interests are the color and culture, computer-supported collaborative design, creative design, evolutionary systems in design, formal models of design process, representation and reasoning in design and visualization for design information. Lee has published about 30 papers in science journals and for scholastic conferences. She is also a participating professor at KAIST Institute for Entertainment Engineering. Before joining KAIST in 2007, she was an assistant professor at the Department of Digital Media Design and Graduate School of Computational Design, the National Yunlin University of Science & Technology (NYUST) in Taiwan starting from 2002. She received her Ph.D. from the School of Architecture (Computational Design) at Carnegie Mellon University in 2002. She graduated from the Department of Housing & Interior Design at Yonsei University in Seoul in 1991 and received her M.S. from the same university in 1993.
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