Jacob Corn

Professor of Genome Biology

Jacob Corn is the Professor of Genome Biology at ETH Zurich (Zurich, Switzerland). In addition to the professorship, he is leading the Unbiased Discovery of Heterogeneous DNA Repair Preferences project.

Corn earned a BS in biology from the University of Puget Sound (Tacoma, US) in 2001 and a PhD in molecular and cell biology from the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley; US) in 2007. His career has bridged academia and industry, working in therapeutic areas that include infectious disease, neurobiology, and oncology. Corn’s graduate studies at UC Berkeley with James Berger redefined our understanding of the geometry of DNA replication and was recognized with several honors, including the Nicholas Cozzarelli and Harold Weintraub awards. His work as a Jane Coffin Childs postdoctoral fellow at the University of Washington culminated in the world’s first computationally designed de novo protein interaction and a protein-based inhibitor to treat flu. Corn began his independent research career as a group leader at Genentech, where his lab discovered biological mechanisms for challenging therapeutic targets. He then moved back to academia as the founding scientific director of the Innovative Genomics Institute and faculty at UC Berkeley.

Corn’s research aims to better understand and treat disease through next-generation genome editing technologies. His research takes a multidisciplinary approach, combining cellular biochemistry, functional genomics, computational biology, bioengineering, and biophysics. His lab’s current focus is the development of genome editing, the mechanisms by which cells repair their DNA, and the maintenance of healthy organelles.