Centers & Labs

RIKEN Center for Integrative Medical Sciences

Laboratory for Cytokine Regulation

Team Leader: Masato Kubo (Ph.D.)
Masato  Kubo(Ph.D.)

The goals of Laboratory for cytokine regulation are to understand the cytokine network mechanisms that control immune cell homeostasis, particularly focus on allergy and virus infection. In this context, distinct Helper T (TH) subsets, TH1, TH2, TH17, and TFH, secrete different set of cytokines, which play a role in the effector and regulatory functions during pathogenic situation. Innate immune cells, including mast cells, basophiles, and innate lymphoid cells may also contribute to the pathogenesis by their expressing cytokines. We focus on how cytokines influence the balance of helper T cell and the innate responses during immunological surveillance system.

Research Subjects

  • Cooperative regulation by innate immune cells and acquired immunity in asthmatic responses.
  • Role of innate immune cells and acquired immunity in influenza virus protection.
  • Role of cytokine signaling in skin homeostasis.

Selected Publications

Papers with an asterisk(*) are based on research conducted outside of RIKEN.
  1. Takeuchi, A., Badr, M.E.S., Miyauchi, K., Ishihara, C. Onishi, R., Guo, Z., Sasaki, Y., Ike, H., Takumi, A., Tsuji, N., Murakami, Y., Katakai,T., Kubo, M., and Saito, T.:
    “CRTAM determines the CD4+ cytotoxic T lymphocyte lineage”
    J. Exp. Med. 213:123-138, 2016
  2. *Kubo, M.:
    “TCF-1 and LEF-1 are new players that help launch the TFH program”
    Nature Immunology, News & Views, 16(9):900-1, 2015
  3. Morita, H., Nambu, A., Oboki, K., Ohno, T., Matsuda, A., Arae, K., Unno, H., Yamaguchi, S., Narushima, S., Kajiwara, N., Iikura, M., Suto, H., Okumura, K., Azuma, M., Sudo, K., Kubo, M. Saito, H., Matsumoto K., and Nakae, S.:
    “An interleukin-33-mast cell-interleukin-2 axis suppresses papain-induced allergic airway inflammation by promoting regulatory T cell numbers”
    Immunity 43,1, 175–186, 2015
  4. *Xu, W. Domingues, R.G., Fonseca-Pereira, D., Ferreira, M., Ribeiro, H., Lopez-Lastra, S., Motomura, Y., Moreira-Santos, L., Bihl, F., Braud,V., Kee, B., Brady, H., Coles, M. C., Vosshenrich, C., Kubo, M., Di Santo, J.P. and Veiga-Fernandes, H.:
    ”NFIL3 orchestrates the emergence of common helper innate lymphoid cell precursors” 
    Cell Report 10, 12, 2043–2054, 2015.
  5. Natsuaki, Y., Egawa, G., Nakamizo, S., Hanakawa, S., Ono, S., Okada, T., Kusuba, N., Otsuka, A., Kitoh, A., Honda, T., Nakajima, S., Tsuchiya, S., Sugimoto, Y., Ishii, J. K., Tsutsui, H., Yagita, H., Iwakura, Y., Kubo, M., Hashimoto, T., Fuentes, J., Guttman-Yassky, E., Miyachi, Y., and Kabashima, K.:
    “Perivascular leukocyte cluster: an essential structure for efficient effector T cell activation in the skin”
    Nature Immunology 15(11):1064-9, 2014
  6. Ise, W., Inoue, T., McLachlan, J.B., Kometani, K., Kubo, M., Okada, T., and Kurosaki, T.:
    “Memory B cells contribute to rapid Bcl6 expression of memory TFH cells”
    Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 111(32):11792-7 2014
  7. Moriyama, S., Takahashi, N., Green, J.A., Kubo, M., Cyster J.G. and Okada, T.:
    “Sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor 2 controls follicular helper T cell localization to support germinal center response”
    J.Exp.Med. 211(7), 1297-1305, 2014
  8. *Motomura, Y., Morita, H., Moro, K., Nakae, S., Artis, D., Koyasu,S., Kubo, M.:
    “Basophil-derived IL-4 controls the function of natural helper cells, a member of ILC2s, in lung inflammation”
    Immunity 40, Issue 5, p758–771, 2014
  9. Kurashima, Y., Amiya, T., Fujusawa, K., Shibata, N., Suzuki, Y. Kogure, Y. Hashimoto, E., Otsuka, A.,
    Kabashima, K., Sato, S., Kubo, M., Yokota, Y., Akira, S., Miyake, K., Kunisawa, J., and Kiyono.:
    “The enzyme Cyp26b1 mediates inhibition of mast cell activation by fibrobalasts to maintain skin-barrierhomeos”
    Immunity 40, 530-541, April 17, 2014
  10. Firth, M.A., Madera,S., Aimee M. Beaulieu, A.M., Gasteiger,G., Schluns, K.S., Kubo, M, Rothman, P.B., Vivier, E., and Sun, J.C.:
    “Nfil3-independent lineage maintenance and antiviral response of natural killer cells”
    J.Exp.Med. 210:2981-2990, 2013

Lab Members

Principal Investigator

Masato Kubo
Team Leader

Core Members

Kosuke Miyauchi
Research Scientist

Contact information

1-7-22 Suehiro-cho, Tsurumi-ku,
Yokohama City, Kanagawa,
230-0045, Japan
Tel: +81-(0)45-503-7047
Fax: +81-(0)45-503-7046

Email: masato.kubo [at]

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