Centers & Labs

RIKEN Center for Integrative Medical Sciences

Laboratory for Skin Homeostasis

Team Leader: Masayuki Amagai (M.D., Ph.D)
Masayuki  Amagai(M.D., Ph.D)

Skin is an organ which covers the outer surface of living bodies. Skin diseases have been categorized based on the morphology of skin lesions, which are now being explained with molecular mechanisms. Many of these skin diseases are caused by immunological abnormalities. Skin is the place where sensitization to external antigens as well as peripheral tolerance to autoantigen take place. Our research group is trying to reveal the entire picture of the skin as an immune organ, clarify the pathophysiological mechanisms of allergic and autoimmune diseases, and develop novel therapeutic strategies based on their molecular mechanisms.

Main Research Field

Medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy

Related Research Fields



  • skin
  • epidermis
  • stratum corneum
  • atopic dermatitis
  • barrier

Selected Publications

Papers with an asterisk(*) are based on research conducted outside of RIKEN.
  1. Yokouchi M, Atsugi T, Logtestijn MV, Tanaka RJ, Kajimura M, Suematsu M, Furuse M, Amagai M, Kubo A.:
    "Epidermal cell turnover across tight junctions based on Kelvin's tetrakaidecahedron cell shape."
    eLife 5:e19593. (2016).
  2. Kobayashi T, Glatz M, Horiuchi K, Kawasaki H, Akiyama H, Kaplan DH, Kong HH, Amagai M, Nagao K.:
    "Dysbiosis and Staphylococcus aureus colonization drives inflammation in atopic dermatitis."
    Immunity 42, 756-66. (2015).
  3. Matsui T and Amagai M.:
    "Dissecting the formation, structure and barrier function of the stratum corneum."
    Int. Immunol. 27: 269-80, (2015).
  4. Sasaki T, Shiohama A, Kubo A, Kawasaki H, Ishida-Yamamoto A, Yamada T, Hachiya T, Shimizu A, Okano H, Kudoh J, Amagai M.:
    "A homozygous nonsense mutation in the gene for Tmem79, a component for the lamellar granule secretory system, produces spontaneous eczema in an experimental model of atopic dermatitis."
    J Allergy Clin Immunol 132 (5): 1111-1120 e1114, 2013
  5. *Kawasaki H, Nagao K, Kubo A, Hata T, Shimizu A, Mizuno H, Yamada T, Amagai M.:
    "Altered stratum corneum barrier and enhanced percutaneous immune responses in filaggrin-null mice."
    J Allergy Clin Immunol, 129 (6): 1538-1546, 2012
  6. *Kubo A, Nagao K, Amagai M.:
    "Epidermal barrier dysfunction and cutaneous sensitization in atopic diseases."
    J Clin Invest 122 (2), 440-447, 2012
  7. *Kubo A, Nagao K, Yokouchi M, Sasaki H, Amagai M.:
    "External antigen uptake by Langerhans cells with reorganization of epidermal tight junction barriers."
    J Exp Med 206 (13):2937-2946, 2009
  8. *Stanley J R and Amagai M.:
    "Pemphigus, bullous impetigo, and the staphylococcal scalded-skin syndrome."
    N Eng J Med 355: 1800-1810, 2006
  9. *Amagai M, Matsuyoshi N, Wang ZH, Andl C, Stanley JR.:
    "Toxin in bullous impetigo and staphylococcal scalded skin syndrome targets desmoglein 1."
    Nature Medicine 6: 1275-1277, 2000
  10. *Amagai M, Tsunoda K, Suzuki H, Nishifuji K, Koyasu S, Nishikawa T.:
    "Use of autoantigen knockout mice to develop an active autoimmune disease model of pemphigus."
    J Clin Invest 105: 625-631, 2000

Lab Members

Principal Investigator

Masayuki Amagai
Team Leader

Core Members

Takeshi Matsui
Deputy Team Leader
Ai Hirabayashi
Research Associate
Yuki Furuichi
Junior Research Associate
Yoshihiro Ito
Junior Research Associate
Ari Morimoto
Junior Research Associate
Keiko Usui
Junior Research Associate
Rika Yokoo
Technical Staff II

Contact Information

1-7-22 Suehiro-cho, Tsurumi-ku,
Yokohama City, Kanagawa,
230-0045, Japan

Email: masayuki.amagai [at]

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