Kwanghun Chung

Core Faculty
Phone: (617) 452-2263
Website: Chung Lab
Lab Phone: (617) 452-2263
room: E25-333
MIT address: 77 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02139
Administrative Assistant: Allison Christiansen
assistant phone: (617) 253-0009
assistant email:

Kwanghun Chung

Core Faculty


  • Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering and Associate Professor at the Institute of Medical Engineering and Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Principal Investigator, Picower Institute for Learning and Memory


Kwanghun Chung completed his undergraduate studies at Seoul National University in 2005, majoring in Chemical and Biological Engineering. He then went to Georgia Institute of Technology and completed his thesis work in 2009 under the mentorship of Hang Lu. During his graduate research he developed automated and integrated microsystems for high-throughput imaging, molecular/behavioral phenotyping, and cell microsurgery of a broad range of living systems including mammalian cells, C. elegans, andDrosophila embryo. After completing collaborations stemming from his PhD work, he then joined Karl Deisseroth Lab at Stanford University for post-doctoral training in 2010.

In his time in the Karl Deisseroth Lab, he invented a novel technology termed CLARITY, which enables system-wide structural and molecular analysis of large-scale intact biological samples including rodent brains and human clinical samples. He was a Burroughs Wellcome Fund Career Award at Scientific Interface (BWF-CASI) Postdoctoral Fellow. In 2013, he joined MIT to start his own lab as an Assistant Professor at the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science (IMES) and the Department of Chemical Engineering. He is also a principal investigator of the Picower Institute of Learning and Memory.


  • PhD, Georgia Institute of Technology, 2009
  • BS in Chemical and Biological Engineering, Seoul National University, 2005

selected awards/societies

  • 2016 NIH New Innovator Award
  • 2016 McKnight Technological Innovations in Neuroscience Award
  • Packard Fellowship for Science and Engineering
  • NARSAD Young Investigator Award
  • Searle Scholars Program
  • 40 under 40, Cell Magazine
  • Burroughs Wellcome Fund Career Awards at the Scientific Interface
  • Ziegler Award for Best Research Paper
  • Anne Robinson Clough Conference Grant
  • James T. Porter Fellowship


The Chung Lab is an interdisciplinary research team devoted to developing and applying novel technologies (e.g. CLARITY) for integrative and comprehensive understanding of large-scale complex biological systems. Specifically, we develop a host of methods that enable rapid extraction of system-wide structural, molecular, and genomic information from intact tissues. Furthermore, we combine these technologies with physiological and behavioral approaches to study function and dysfunction of mammalian brain as well as other organs. We hope that our developing technique will continue to provide unforeseen opportunities for deeper understanding of biological systems. Our mission is to empower the scientific community by openly sharing research outcomes and offering training courses to broadly and rapidly disseminate our technologies.

selected publications

  • S.-Y. Kim, J. H. Cho, M. Murray, N. Bakh, H. Choi, K. Ohn, S. Vassallo,
    L. Ruelas, A. Hubbert, M. McCue, and K. Chung. “Stochastic electrotransport selectively enhances the transport of highly electromobile molecules.” PNAS, accepted.
  • K. Chung* and K. Deisseroth*. “CLARITY for mapping the nervous system.” Nature Methods 10 (2013): 508-13.
  • K. Chung, J. Wallace, S. Y. Kim, S. Kalyanasundaram, A. Andalman, T. J. Davidson, K. A. Zalocusky, J. Mattis, S. Pak, V. Gradinaru, H. Bernstein, J. Mirzabekov, C. Ramakrishnan, and K. Deisseroth. “Structural and molecular interrogation of intact biological systems.” Nature 497 (2013): 332-37.
  • J. S. Kanodia, Y. Kim, R. Tomer, Z. Khan, K. Chung, J. D. Storey, H. Lu, P. Keller, and S. Y. Shvartsman. “A computational statistics approach for estimating the spatial range of morphogen gradient.” Development 138.22 (2011): 4867-74.
  • K. Chung*, M. Zhan*, J. Srinivasan, P. Sternberg, E. Gong, F. Schroeder, and H. Lu. “Microfluidic chamber arrays for whole-organism behavior-based chemical screening.” Lab on a Chip 11 (2011): 3689-97.
  • K. Chung*, C. A. Rivet, M. Kemp, and H. Lu. “Imaging single-cell signaling dynamics with a deterministic high-density single-cell trap array.” Analytical Chemistry 83 (2011): 7044-52
  • Y. Kim, M. J. Andreu, B. Lim, K. Chung, M. Terayama, G. Jimenez, C. A. Berg, H. Lu, and S. Y. Shvartsman. “Gene regulation by MARK substrate competition.” Developmental Cell 20 (2011): 880-87.
  • K. Chung*, Y. Kim*, J. S. Kanodia, E. Gong, S. Y. Shvartsman, and H. Lu. “A microfluidic array for large-scale ordering and orientation of embryos.” Nature Methods 8 (2011): 171-76.
  • M. Crane, K. Chung, J. Stirman, and H. Lu. “Microfludics-enabled phenotyping, imaging, and screening of multicellular organisms.” Lab on a Chip 21 (2010): 1509-17
  • K. Chung*, H. Lee*, and H. Lu. “Multiplex pressure measurement in microsystems using volume displacement of fluorescent particle suspension.” Lab on a Chip 9 (2009): 3345-53.
  • K. Chung and H. Lu. “Automated high-throughput cell microsurgery on-chip.” Lab on a Chip 9 (2009): 2764-66.
  • K. Chung*, J. Cho*, E. Park, V. Breedveld, and H. Lu. “Three-dimensional In Situ Temperature Measurement in Microfluidic System Using Brownian Motion of Nanoparticles.” Analytical Chemistry 81 (2009): 210-17.
  • M. M. Crane, K. Chung, and H. Lu. “Computer-enhanced high-throughput genetic screens of C. elegans in a microfluidic system.” Lab on a Chip 9 (2009): 38-40.
  • K. Chung*, M. M. Crane*, H. Lu. “Automated on-chip rapid microscopy, phenotyping, and sorting of C. elegans.” Nature Methods 5 (2008): 637-43.
  • K. Chung, J. Kim, B. K. Cho, B. J. Ko, B. Y. Hwang, and B. G. Kim. “How does dextran sulfate prevent heat induced aggregation of protein? The mechanism and its limitation as aggregation inhibitor.” BBA-Proteins and Proteomics 1774 (2007): 249-57.

A full list of Professor Chung’s publications can be found on his website.