[Yutaka Ito] Establishment of in situ structural biology through the integration of NMR and computational science and its application to the investigation of eukaryotic intracellular protein behaviours

Research Director

Yutaka Ito
Yutaka Ito
Tokyo Metropolitan University



In living cells, a variety of soluble macromolecules exist in a very crowded environment, thus influencing the kinetics and thermodynamics of protein folding and various binding events. In this research project we focus on investigating three-dimensional structures, dynamics, and interactions of proteins “”at work”” inside eukaryotic cells, aiming at establishing a new “”in situ”” structural biology, which suppose to be one of the major fields in the novel structural life science. In order to achieve this we are developing a new approach integrating in-cell nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (in-cell NMR) and computational sciences. In-cell NMR is currently the only approach that can provide structural information of proteins inside cells at atomic resolution. The outcomes of this research will provide very useful tools for explicit understanding of the structural bases of various biological events inside living cells. Ripple effects can also be expected in revealing the mechanisms of various diseases and contributing to state-of-the-art medical technologies, drug-discovery technologies, etc.

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