Centers & Labs

RIKEN Quantitative Biology Center

Laboratory for Cell Dynamics Observation

Group Director: Toshio Yanagida (Ph.D.)
Toshio  Yanagida(Ph.D.)

We have been focusing on single-molecule imaging and nano-scale manipulation techniques and applying them to the study of biological molecular motors. One of our most important insights on these motors operate is that they do not filter Brownian noise, instead using this noise to perform robustly. These same techniques have afforded us new understanding on how information is passed intracellularly and how the brain maps a visual stimulus. These processes too exploit Brownian noise, a strategy we call "yuragi". Yuragi is exclusive to living organisms, enabling fewer constraints and less energy demands for their function. Currently, by collaborating with robotics engineers and information scientists, we are investigating ways to use yuragi in complex information networks like robots and the internet. By studying yuragi in biological systems and successfully applying yuragi to artificial systems should give us better understanding of how biological systems reduce their degree of freedom to respond efficiently to environmental changes.

Main Research Field

Biology

Related Research Fields

Complex systems / Mathematical and physical sciences / Medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy

Keywords

  • Mechano Biology
  • Heart
  • Super-resolution imaging
  • Variability of genomic structure

Selected Publications

Papers with an asterisk(*) are based on research conducted outside of RIKEN.
  1. Iwaki, M., Wichham, S., Ikezaki, K., Yanagida, T. & Shih, W.:
    "A programmable DNA origami nanospring that reveals force-induced adjacent binding of myosin VI heads"
    Nat. Commun. (2016)
  2. Fujita, K., Iwaki, M. & Yanagida, T:
    "Transcriptional bursting is intrinsically caused by interplay between RNA polymerases on DNA"
    Nat. Commun. (2016)
  3. Iwaki, M., Iwane, A. H., Ikezaki, K. & Yanagida, T.:
    "Local Heat Activation of Single Myosins Based on Optical Trapping of Gold Nanoparticles"
    Nano Lett. 15, 2456-2461 (2015)
  4. Karagiannis, P., Ishii, Y. & Yanagida, T.:
    "Molecular Machines Like Myosin Use Randomness to Behave Predictably"
    Chem. Rev. 114, 3318-3334 (2014)
  5. Fujita, K., Iwaki, M., Iwane, A. H., Marcucci, L. & Yanagida, T.:
    "Switching of myosin-V motion between the lever-arm swing and Brownian search-and-catch"
    Nat. Commun. 3 (2012)
  6. *Fujii, T., Iwane, A. H., Yanagida, T. & Namba, K.:
    "Direct visualization of secondary structures of F-actin by electron cryomicroscopy "
    Nature 467, 724-728 (2010)
  7. Nishikawa, S., Arimoto, I., Ikezaki, K., Sugawa, M., Ueno, H., et al.:
    "Switch between Large Hand-Over-Hand and Small Inchworm-like Steps in Myosin VI "
    Cell 142, 879-888 (2010)
  8. *Iwaki, M., Iwane, A. H., Shimokawa, T., Cooke, R. & Yanagida, T.:
    "Brownian search-and-catch mechanism for myosin-VI steps "
    Nat. Chem. Biol. 5, 403-405 (2009)
  9. Inomata, K., Ohno, A., Tochio, H., Isogai, S., Tenno, T., et al.:
    "High-resolution multi-dimensional NMR spectroscopy of proteins in human cells "
    Nature 458, 106-109 (2009)
  10. *Funatsu, T., Harada, Y., Tokunaga, M., Saito, K. & Yanagida, T.:
    "Imaging of single fluorescent molecules and individual ATP turnovers by single myosin molecules in aqueous-solution "
    Nature 374, 555-559 (1995)

Lab Members

Principal Investigator

Toshio Yanagida
Group Director

Core Members

Mitsuhiro Iwaki
Senior Scientist
Kohsuke Inomata
Research Scientist
Keisuke Fujita
Postdoctoral Researcher
Masashi Ohmachi
Postdoctoral Researcher
Rika Kawaguchi
Technical Staff I
Yukiko Onishi
Technical Staff I

Organization