Joung Lab

Joung Laboratory
Massachusetts General Hospital
Molecular Pathology Unit
149 13th Street, Room 6133
Charlestown, MA 02129 USA

The Joung Laboratory develops technologies for genome engineering using artificial “designer” DNA-binding domains. We utilize engineered zinc finger, transcription activator-like effector (TALE), and RNA-guided CRISPR/Cas-based systems to direct specific genomic alterations in living cells and organisms. In addition to developing and optimizing these technologies, we are exploring their applications for biological research and gene therapy.

Joung Lab Team

Graduate Student
Research Fellow
Graduate Student
Research Techni...
Graduate Student
Lab Manager
Graduate Student
Research Fellow
Research Techni...
Research Techni...
Graduate Student
Research Fellow
Graduate Student
Research Fellow
Research Fellow
Research Techni...
Research Techni...
Research Fellow
Research Techni...
Nicholas Bonnaig
Vincent Cascio
Elizabeth Dahlborg
Boston University School of Medicine, Class of 2015
Magdalena Eichtinger
Research Fellow, MGH Neurology
Rui Fang
Sandra Fay-Richard
Intellectual Property and Corporate Counsel at Intelligent Medical Devices
Jennifer Foden
Associate Scientist II, Bluebird Bio
Jonathan Foley
Yanfang Fu
Astrid Giesecke
Scientist, GSK (UK)
Carl Göbel
Mathew Goodwin
Gene Editing Specialist, Transposagen Biopharmaceuticals
Andrew Hirsh
Jessica Hurt
Research Fellow, Burge Laboratory, Department of Biology, MIT
Tao Jiang
Edouard Kengni
Consultant, Bioversity International
Cyd Khayter
Samantha Linder
Graduate Student, MGH Cancer Center
Morgan Maeder
Research Scientist, Editas Medicine
Megan McSweeney
Marketing and Commercial Development, Invitae
Nhu Nguyen
Michelle Prew
Cherie Ramirez
Deputy Director, Global Health Education and Learning Incubator, Harvard University
Maureen Regan
Research Specialist, University of Illinois, Chicago
Deepak Reyon
Biogen IDEC
Jeffry Sander
Research Scientist, DuPont Pioneer
Stacey Thibodeau Beganny
Research Technician, Amherst College
Ved Topkar
Shengdar Tsai


Dr. Joung’s research interests include understanding how Cys2His2 zinc fingers, the most common domain encoded in the human genome, mediate specific protein-DNA and protein-protein interactions. In addition, Dr. Joung’s lab uses a combination of directed randomization and bacterial cell-based selection methods to engineer artificial “designer” zinc finger domains with desired DNA-binding specificities. The ability to direct functional domains (e.g.—transcriptional regulatory or endonuclease domains) to specific genomic loci using these customized DNA-binding domains will have important applications as tools for biological research and as potential therapeutics for molecular medicine and gene therapy.

Education & Training:

1998-2001 Post-doctoral fellowship, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1996 Ph.D. in Genetics, Harvard University
1996 M.D., Harvard Medical School
1987 A.B., Biochemical Sciences, Harvard College

2009-pres Associate Pathologist, Massachusetts General Hospital
2009-pres Associate Chief of Pathology for Research, Massachusetts General Hospital
2008-pres Associate Professor of Pathology, Harvard Medical School
2007-pres. Director, Molecular Pathology Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital
2007-pres. Member, Center for Computational and Integrative Biology, Massachusetts General Hospital
2004-2008 Assistant Professor of Pathology, Harvard Medical School
2004-pres. Faculty member, Ph.D. program in Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Division of Medical Sciences, Harvard Medical School
2003-pres. Member, Center for Cancer Research, MGH Cancer Center
2000-2008 Assistant Pathologist, Massachusetts General Hospital
1998-2001 Post-doctoral Fellow, HHMI/Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1997 Chief Resident in Clinical Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital
1996-1999 Resident in Clinical Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital

2011 Appointment as The Jim and Ann Orr MGH Research Scholar
2010 NIH Director’s Pioneer Award recipient
2010 NIH Transformative R01 recipient
2009 Honoree, The One Hundred, MGH Cancer Center
2000-2005 NIH K08 fellowship award
2000 Board Certification in Clinical Pathology, American Board of Pathology
1998-2000 Howard Hughes Medical Institute Postdoctoral Research Fellowship for Physicians
1996 Bernard N. Fields Prize in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics (for Ph.D. thesis), Harvard Medical School
1989-1996 Medical Scientist Training Program (M.D.-Ph.D.) appointment, Harvard Medical School
1987 Graduated magna cum laude, Harvard College

Joung Lab News

News and Achievements

Apr. 2012
Joung lab publishes high-throughput FLASH method for engineering TAL effectors in Nature Biotechnology

Jan. 2012
Genome editing with engineered nucleases selected as “Method of the Year” for 2011 by the journal Nature Methods

Dec. 2011
Gene-editing nucleases featured in a news article in the journal Biotechniques

Aug. 2011
Joung lab and collaborators demonstrate disruption of endogenous zebrafish genes using engineered TALENs in Nature Biotechnology

Aug. 2011
Article on engineered TALEN and ZFN technology published in Nature Biotechnology

May 2011
Keith receives The Jim and Ann Orr MGH Research Scholar award

Dec. 2010
Zinc Finger Nucleases spotlighted as a “Method to Watch” for Nature Methods annual “Method of the Year” feature (PDF). Context-dependent assembly paper highlighted in the article.

Dec. 2010
Joung lab and collaborators describe new Context-Dependent Assembly zinc finger engineering method in Nature Methods publication

Nov. 2010
MGH Proto magazine publishes article and editorial on engineered zinc finger technology

Sept. 2010
Keith receives the NIH Director’s Pioneer Award

Sept. 2010
Paola Arlotta, Feng Zhang, and Keith awarded NIH Transformative R01

Sept. 2010
Joung lab receives Addgene Resource Sharing Award

Mar. 2010
Morgan awarded Manfred L. Karnovsky fellowship

Dec. 2009
Zinc fingers highlighted in New York Times Science Times article

June 2009
Keith selected as one of The One Hundred by the MGH Cancer Center.

Apr. 2009
Morgan awarded National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship

Feb. 2009
PLoS One paper on OPEN ZFNs used to modify zebrafish genespublished

Sept. 2008
Engineered zinc fingers and OPEN covered in Nature news article

Jul. 2008
Molecular Cell paper on OPEN (Oligomerized Pool ENgineering) of zinc fingers published

Apr. 2008
Nature Methods correspondence on modular assembly of zinc fingers published

Mar. 2007
Cherie awarded National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship

Apr. 2006
Cherie awarded Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship

Dec. 2005
Zinc finger nucleases highlighted in Science magazine News Focus article

Joung Lab Resources


TALEN Resources:
FLASH platform resources
REAL and REAL-Fast platform resources
Joung lab TAL effector reagents at Addgene
TALengineering newsgroup

Zinc Finger Protocols:
Oligomerized Pool ENgineering (OPEN) reagents
ZFN-mediated mutagenesis of zebrafish genes
Modular assembly method for engineering zinc finger arrays
High-throughput beta-galactosidase assay (word.doc)

Zinc Finger Reagents:
Oligomerized Pool ENgineering (OPEN) reagents
Modular assembly engineering reagents
Zinc Finger Nuclease (ZFN) expression vectors
Bacterial two-hybrid system vector maps and sequences (word.doc)

Zinc Finger Software:
(genome-scale resource for identifying potential zinc finger nuclease target sites in various organisms, Dobbs laboratory, Iowa State University)
(Zinc Finger Targeter; web-based software for designing zinc finger arrays using modular design, Dobbs and Voytas labs, Iowa State University)
(Zinc Finger Database; web-accessible database of zinc fingers and engineered zinc finger arrays, Voytas laboratory, University of Minnesota)

The Zinc Finger Consortium
Addgene Zinc Finger Consortium webpage
Center for Causal Consequences of Variation
Dr. Carl O. Pabo and Protean Futures LLC