Charles Gersbach

Charles Gersbach

John W. Strohbehn Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering

Appointments and Affiliations

  • John W. Strohbehn Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering
  • Professor of Biomedical Engineering
  • Associate Professor of Surgery
  • Associate Professor in Cell Biology
  • Associate Professor in Orthopaedic Surgery
  • Affiliate of the Duke Regeneration Center
  • Core Faculty in Innovation & Entrepreneurship
  • Associate of the Duke Initiative for Science & Society
  • Member of the Duke Cancer Institute

Contact Information


  • Ph.D. Georgia Institute of Technology, 2006
  • B.S. Georgia Institute of Technology, 2001

Research Interests

Gene therapy, genomics and epigenomics, biomolecular and cellular engineering, regenerative medicine, and synthetic biology.

Awards, Honors, and Distinctions

  • Fellow (NAI). National Academy of Inventors. 2022
  • John W. Strohbehn Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering . Duke University. 2021
  • Stansell Family Distinguished Research Award . Pratt School of Engineering. 2019
  • Fellow. American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. 2017
  • Allen Distinguished Investigator. Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group. 2017
  • Thomas Langford Lectureship Award. Duke University. 2016
  • Outstanding New Investigator. American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy. 2014
  • Capers and Marion McDonald Teaching and Research Award. Duke University. 2013
  • Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program. National Science Foundation. 2012
  • Rising Star Award. Society for Physical Regulation in Biology and Medicine. 2012
  • Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award. Oak Ridge Associated Universities. 2011
  • Basil O’Connor Starter Scholar Research Award. March of Dimes Foundation. 2011
  • NIH Director’s New Innovator Award. National Institutes of Health. 2011
  • Hartwell Individual Biomedical Research Award. The Hartwell Foundation. 2010

Courses Taught

  • PHARM 494: Research Independent Study
  • PHARM 493: Research Independent Study
  • EGR 393: Research Projects in Engineering
  • CELLBIO 493: Research Independent Study
  • BME 590L: Special Topics with Lab
  • BME 564L: Genome Engineering Lab (GE, MC)
  • BME 562: Biology by Design (GE, MC)
  • BME 494: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • BME 493: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • BME 394: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)

In the News

Representative Publications

  • Black, JB; Adler, AF; Wang, H-G; D'Ippolito, AM; Hutchinson, HA; Reddy, TE; Pitt, GS; Leong, KW; Gersbach, CA, Targeted Epigenetic Remodeling of Endogenous Loci by CRISPR/Cas9-Based Transcriptional Activators Directly Converts Fibroblasts to Neuronal Cells., Cell Stem Cell, vol 19 no. 3 (2016), pp. 406-414 [10.1016/j.stem.2016.07.001] [abs].
  • Maeder, ML; Gersbach, CA, Genome-editing Technologies for Gene and Cell Therapy., Molecular therapy : the journal of the American Society of Gene Therapy, vol 24 no. 3 (2016), pp. 430-446 [10.1038/mt.2016.10] [abs].
  • Thakore, PI; Black, JB; Hilton, IB; Gersbach, CA, Editing the epigenome: technologies for programmable transcription and epigenetic modulation., Nature methods, vol 13 no. 2 (2016), pp. 127-137 [10.1038/nmeth.3733] [abs].
  • Nelson, CE; Hakim, CH; Ousterout, DG; Thakore, PI; Moreb, EA; Castellanos Rivera, RM; Madhavan, S; Pan, X; Ran, FA; Yan, WX; Asokan, A; Zhang, F; Duan, D; Gersbach, CA, In vivo genome editing improves muscle function in a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy., Science, vol 351 no. 6271 (2016), pp. 403-407 [10.1126/science.aad5143] [abs].
  • Thakore, PI; D'Ippolito, AM; Song, L; Safi, A; Shivakumar, NK; Kabadi, AM; Reddy, TE; Crawford, GE; Gersbach, CA, Highly specific epigenome editing by CRISPR-Cas9 repressors for silencing of distal regulatory elements., Nat Methods, vol 12 no. 12 (2015), pp. 1143-1149 [10.1038/nmeth.3630] [abs].
  • Hilton, IB; D'Ippolito, AM; Vockley, CM; Thakore, PI; Crawford, GE; Reddy, TE; Gersbach, CA, Epigenome editing by a CRISPR-Cas9-based acetyltransferase activates genes from promoters and enhancers., Nat Biotechnol, vol 33 no. 5 (2015), pp. 510-517 [10.1038/nbt.3199] [abs].
  • Polstein, LR; Gersbach, CA, A light-inducible CRISPR-Cas9 system for control of endogenous gene activation., Nature chemical biology, vol 11 no. 3 (2015), pp. 198-200 [10.1038/nchembio.1753] [abs].
  • Ousterout, DG; Kabadi, AM; Thakore, PI; Majoros, WH; Reddy, TE; Gersbach, CA, Multiplex CRISPR/Cas9-based genome editing for correction of dystrophin mutations that cause Duchenne muscular dystrophy., Nat Commun, vol 6 (2015) [10.1038/ncomms7244] [abs].
  • Perez-Pinera, P; Kocak, DD; Vockley, CM; Adler, AF; Kabadi, AM; Polstein, LR; Thakore, PI; Glass, KA; Ousterout, DG; Leong, KW; Guilak, F; Crawford, GE; Reddy, TE; Gersbach, CA, RNA-guided gene activation by CRISPR-Cas9-based transcription factors., Nat Methods, vol 10 no. 10 (2013), pp. 973-976 [10.1038/nmeth.2600] [abs].