Hyesun “Sunny” Jang, PhD, DVM

Staff Scientist

Hyesun “Sunny” Jang is a staff scientist at the J. Craig Venter Institute, supervised by Dr. Marcelo Freire. With a background as a veterinarian, Dr. Jang is interested in developing host-directed anti-viral strategies against diverse zoonotic viruses.

Dr. Jang received her doctor of veterinary medicine (DVM) and master of science (MS) degrees from Chungbuk National University in South Korea (2005-2012). During the eight-year-training in Korea, Dr. Jang focused on developing novel strategies to diagnose and control avian diseases. In 2013, Dr. Jang moved to United States to pursue a PhD at Ohio State University (2013-2017) followed by postdoctoral training at the University of Georgia (2018-2021). During her PhD and postdoctoral training, Dr. Jang’s research interests led her to apply her knowledge of host-pathogen interactions to improve vaccines against zoonotic avian influenza viruses.

With her expertise in virology and veterinary medicine, she has been actively engaged in diverse projects to evaluate candidate prophylactics/therapeutics against the novel SARS-CoV-2 virus. Dr. Jang has also collaborated with pioneers in a wide range of fields, inspiring her to expand her research to include high-throughput analysis on biofluids. Dr. Jang joined JCVI to apply omics tools in the investigation of host-pathogen interactions. She believes that a better understanding of host-pathogen interaction will lead to the development of innovative prophylactic/therapeutic measures against rapidly evolving zoonotic viruses.

Research Priorities

Profiling salivary signature to COVID-19
  • Screening antibody response and neutralizing activity of saliva to COVID-19 infection
  • Comparative analysis on saliva samples collected from COVID-19 patients and healthy individual
  • Identification of correlation among demography, immunologic/proteomic profiling and the elicitation of protective immune response
Verification of host-pathogen interaction
  • Identification of dysbiosis in oral microbiota in diseases
  • Understanding the role of oral microbiome in both systemic and local mucosal immune systems  
Discovery of biomarkers in saliva samples
  • Discovery of prophylactic/therapeutic/diagnostic targets in saliva against COVID-19 and type II diabetes mellitus (T2DB)
  • Verification of critical biomarkers in biofluids associated with individual responsiveness to vaccinations

Publications

Cell. 2021-04-01; 184.7: 1804-1820.e16.
Human neutralizing antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 require intact Fc effector functions for optimal therapeutic protection
Winkler ES, Gilchuk P, Yu J, Bailey AL, Chen RE, Chong Z, Zost SJ, Jang H, Huang Y, Allen JD, Case JB, Sutton RE, Carnahan RH, Darling TL, Boon ACM, Mack M, Head RD, Ross TM, Crowe JE, Diamond MS
PMID: 33691139
Cell. 2021-04-01; 184.7: 1821-1835.e16.
Extremely potent human monoclonal antibodies from COVID-19 convalescent patients
Andreano E, Nicastri E, Paciello I, Pileri P, Manganaro N, Piccini G, Manenti A, Pantano E, Kabanova A, Troisi M, Vacca F, Cardamone D, De Santi C, Torres JL, Ozorowski G, Benincasa L, Jang H, Di Genova C, Depau L, Brunetti J, Agrati C, Capobianchi MR, Castilletti C, Emiliozzi A, Fabbiani M, Montagnani F, Bracci L, Sautto G, Ross TM, Montomoli E, Temperton N, Ward AB, Sala C, Ippolito G, Rappuoli R
PMID: 33667349
PloS one. 2021-03-18; 16.3: e0246613.
Hemagglutination Inhibition (HAI) antibody landscapes after vaccination with H7Nx virus like particles
Jang H, Ross TM
PMID: 33735274
Poultry science. 2021-03-01; 100.3: 100893.
Prevalence, biosecurity factor, and antimicrobial susceptibility analysis of Salmonella species isolated from commercial duck farms in Korea
Kim TS, Kim GS, Son JS, Lai VD, Mo IP, Jang H
PMID: 33518320
Veterinary microbiology. 2020-12-01; 251.108907.
Dried SARS-CoV-2 virus maintains infectivity to Vero E6 cells for up to 48 h
Jang H, Ross TM
PMID: 33129043
Human vaccines & immunotherapeutics. 2020-09-01; 16.9: 2042-2050.
Immune-engineered H7N9 influenza hemagglutinin improves protection against viral influenza virus challenge
Jang H, Meyers LM, Boyle C, De Groot AS, Moise L, Ross TM
PMID: 32783766
Expert review of vaccines. 2019-10-11; 18.10: 1043-1051.
Preexisting influenza specific immunity and vaccine effectiveness
Jang H, Ross TM
PMID: 31575308
PloS one. 2018-04-06; 13.4: e0195285.
Efficacy and synergy of live-attenuated and inactivated influenza vaccines in young chickens
Jang H, Elaish M, Kc M, Abundo MC, Ghorbani A, Ngunjiri JM, Lee CW
PMID: 29624615

Research Priorities

Profiling salivary signature to COVID-19
  • Screening antibody response and neutralizing activity of saliva to COVID-19 infection
  • Comparative analysis on saliva samples collected from COVID-19 patients and healthy individual
  • Identification of correlation among demography, immunologic/proteomic profiling and the elicitation of protective immune response
Verification of host-pathogen interaction
  • Identification of dysbiosis in oral microbiota in diseases
  • Understanding the role of oral microbiome in both systemic and local mucosal immune systems  
Discovery of biomarkers in saliva samples
  • Discovery of prophylactic/therapeutic/diagnostic targets in saliva against COVID-19 and type II diabetes mellitus (T2DB)
  • Verification of critical biomarkers in biofluids associated with individual responsiveness to vaccinations