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Nanotechnology and Materials
Success in taking a protein alive in an artificial capsule

  • As part of the CREST Strategic Basic Research Program, Professor FUJITA Makoto and his research group (The University of Tokyo) have succeeded in the encapsulation of a whole protein within a synthesized capsular molecule with the diameter of seven nanometers. A wide variety of applications in the fields of industry, drug discovery, and so on are expected, because the encapsulation of proteins could be useful for structural analysis or functional improvement of the trapped proteins.
Millionfold improvement of the detection limit of biomarkers for diseases and infections

  • As part of the CREST Strategic Basic Research Program, Professor NOJI Hiroyuki and his research group (The University of Tokyo) have developed a novel device employing one million femtoliter droplets immobilized on a substrate for the quantitative detection of extremely low concentrations of biomolecules in a sample. Surface-modified polystyrene beads carrying either zero or a single biomolecule-reporter enzyme complex are efficiently isolated into femtoliter droplets formed on hydrophilic-in-hydrophobic surfaces. In the near future, this method will lead to a highly-sensitive portable device for the earliest diagnosis of many diseases and infections.
Transparent Amorphous Oxide Semiconductor (TAOS) Thin-Film Transistor technology licensed for commercial application

  • In research conducted under JST’s ERATO and ERATO-SORST programs, Professor HOSONO Hideo of the Tokyo Institute of Technology has pioneered a new paradigm for the properties of transparent oxides. He proposed the first-ever TAOS with high electron mobility, and subsequently successfully fabricated an amorphous indium-gallium-zinc oxide (a-IGZO) thin-film transistor (TFT) that was transparent and flexible. IGZO-TFTs demonstrate 10–20 times higher electron mobility and potentially offer a 10 times greater display resolution than conventional types. Commercialization of this technology has been keenly anticipated, with the technology package now licensed to increasing numbers of manufacturing companies for practical application in next-generation flat display panels.
Polymer Thin Film Transistors (TFT) Developed, Controlling Currents for Emission of Polymer Organic Light-Emitting Diodes
—Leading the way to polymer displays with low cost, large area, and high responsivity—

  • As part of the Strategic Promotion of Innovative Research and Development program (S-Innovation), Professor TAKIMIYA Kazuo (Hiroshima University) and KOHIRO Kenji (Senior Research Associate, Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd.) have developed a novel polymer semiconductor of poly(naphtodithiophenbithiophenyl), and have successfully applied the polymer to thin film transistors prepared by solution-based processes. Combined with all-polymer light-emitting diodes, these results demonstrate great promise for flexible low-cost displays consisting of all-polymer semiconductors prepared by solution-based processes.