[Multicellular interaction] Year Started : 2019

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Itaru Imayoshi

Measurement, manipulation, and prediction of interactions between the mechanical and biochemical fields

Research Director

In the course of multi-cellular tissue development, cell proliferation, differentiation, migration, morphological change and functional expression should be proceeded in a highly coordinated manner. To understand mechanisms underlying these processes, we need to unveil the spatial and temporal patterns in interactions between the mechanical, biochemical and cell biological fields. Towards this end, we will develop integrated analytic platforms consisting of novel technologies in live imaging, light-mediated manipulation and computational simulation. Using these cutting edge technologies, we will investigate unsolved principles govenring development and maintenance of multi-cellular tissues and organs.

Mototsugu Eiraku

Research on a novel methodology for stem cell manipulation based on the elucidation of gene regulatory network of early human development

Research Director

The purpose of this study is to reproduce the early developmental process in vitro and establish a new methodology for inducing complex organs composed of three germ layers from human pluripotent stem cells. To achieve this, we will challenge the following three technological developments. 1) A comprehensive and quantitative description of gene regulatory network of human early development 2) Development of mathematical methods for predicting network structure and determining valid control points 3) Development of cell state control technology with high spatial and temporal resolution.

Satoshi Sawai

Deciphering multicellular order through morphodynamic spectrum

Research Director
Shuji Ishihara

Cell morphodynamics take distinct characters typically identified as epithelial, mesenchymal or amoeboid that often coexit in developing tissues. By focusing on the dynamical features, the project will develop means to characterize and classify cell-types and their state-transition according to their coordinates within the spectrum of possible morphotypes. Emphasis is placed on developing quantitative methodologies that links multi-modal microscopy measurements and mathematical modeling-based feature extraction to guide characterization and understanding of tissue deformation during development and regeneration.

Yuichiro Tsuchiya

Atlas of plant hormone flows at single-cell resolution

Research Director
Yoshikatsu Sato
Masakazu Nanbo
Yu Hijikata

Multicellular growth of plants are shaped on dynamic cell-to-cell flows of plant hormones. In this project, we will develop a small-molecule technology enabling direct visualization of the cell-to-cell movement of plant hormones. The microscopic parameters of the cell-to-cell movement will be obtained from each single cell and integrated into a graphical model representing the flow of plant hormones at tissue level. The resulting atlas of plant hormone flows with single-cell resolution will provide a basis of multicellular behavior in plants and accelerate our understanding of the their dynamic nature.

Katsumasa Fujita

Comprehensive molecular imaging of multicellular systems

Research Director
Mikiko Sodeoka
Hideo Tanaka

To understand the biological functions produced through interactions between multiple cells and molecules, it is important to obtain morphological, material, and chemical information comprehensively in the scale ranging from molecule to tissue. In this project, we will develop optical microscopy techniques that can visualize multiple molecular species and their chemical conditions simultaneously with high temporal and spatial accuracies. The techniques will help us to understand the interactions of multiple biological molecules and how they contribute to the biological functions produced in multicellular systems.

Hironobu Fujiwara

Dynamic epithelial-mesenchymal interactions in the emergence of integumentary diversity

Research Director
Masaharu Nagayama
Itoshi Nikaido

Organisms have created a remarkable diversity in the structure and function of integument in order to adapt to various environments. However, the mechanism and theory, by which the integument develops various forms and functions from a 2D flat cell sheet, are not well understood. In this study, we take a new viewpoint that cell-cell interactions between heterogeneous tissues, such as epithelium and mesenchyme, and changes in their interactions are keys for the emergence of various integuments. We will address this issue through a single cell multi-omics analysis of spatially and temporally dynamic cell-cell interactions.

Yuichi Wakamoto

Establishing live-cell omics and cellular lineage analysis for understanding and controlling cancer persistence

Research Director
Tetsuya Kobayashi
Takafumi Miyamoto

“Persistence” is a phenomenon in which a small fraction of cells in a clonal cellular population survives over an extended period under the exposure to lethal stress. In this project, we develop the new methods and techniques integrating Raman spectroscopic live-cell omics, single-cell measurement, statistical and mathematical theories of cellular lineage analysis, and controlling cellular population dynamics. We use these methods and techniques to understand the detailed molecular dynamics as well as the general mechanistic underpinnings behind the persistence of cancer cells against anti-cancer drugs and establish strategies of controlling the phenomenon.

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