Joon Myong Song

Joon Myong Song

Seoul National University, South Korea

Title: Hyper-multicolor high-content cellular assay based on quantum dot nanoprobe


Joon Myong Song received his PhD in 1997 at Kyushu University, in Japan. He worked as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow from 1998 to 2004 at Iowa State University, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory in United States. At present, he is a Professor and Head of Department of Pharmacy at College of Pharmacy School, Seoul National University in South Korea. His research area includes multifunctional nanoparticle for diagnosis and therapy and high-content cell-based drug screening and diagnosis using hyper-multicolor cellular imaging. He has published 84 peer reviewed papers in the top journals, 7 book chapters, and 10 patents.


High-Content Cell-Based Assay (HCA) has attracted great attention due to its ability to be used in the drug discovery-driven research and development required to understand the functions of genes and gene products at the level of the cell. HCA simultaneously measures multiple biomarkers in a single cell with multiplexing fluorescent probes. The complex intracellular responses involved in drug-induced efficacy or cytotoxicity can be observed in organ-specific cells by HCA. Application of HCA to organ-specific cell models provides deeper biological information suitable for better decisions on progressing compounds. Early safety evaluation by HCA reveals the complex cellular responses triggered by potentially harmful molecules in the cells of target organs. Gaining a deep understanding of the mechanisms underlying these cellular toxicological responses is valuable before a series of lead compounds are progressed to time-consuming and expensive animal tests. Despite HCA’s capability, it is not common to simultaneously observe many biomarkers in an intact cell. This is because HCA measurement is dependent on the use of probing materials. Concurrent monitoring of multiple biomarkers is practically limited due to the spectral overlap among probing materials having broad absorption and emission spectrums. Quantum dot-based HCA is capable of supplying cellular imaging at particular wavelengths and each wavelength can be scanned rapidly. This cellular imaging is very advantageous in that it can select particular wavelengths that do not overlap among the probing materials and concurrently monitor a large number of drug targets or biomarkers.