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Chief Scientist Laboratories RNA Systems Biochemistry Laboratory

Chief Scientist: Shintaro Iwasaki (Ph.D.)

Research Summary

Shintaro  Iwasaki(Ph.D.)

“The central dogma of molecular biology”, which represents information flow from DNA to RNA to protein, has been most basic principle in life. Recent quantitative and comprehensive analysis revealed that amount of RNA could not simply correlate with protein abundance in cells, suggesting that “translation control” significantly contributes to gene expression in more general than as we previously expected. Our laboratory tackles the unknown mechanism of translation control, by the combination of next-generation deep sequencing and classical biochemistry.

Main Research Fields

  • Biology

Related Research Fields

  • Biological Sciences
  • Life science
  • Genome science


  • translation
  • RNA
  • Inhibitors

Selected Publications

  • 1.Padron A., Iwasaki S., and Ingolia NT.:
    "Proximity RNA labeling by APEX-Seq reveals the organization of translation initiation complexes and repressive RNA granules"
    Mol. Cell. 75(4):875-887. (2019)
  • 2.Iwasaki S., Iwasaki W., Takahashi M. (equal contribution), Sakamoto A., Watanabe C., Shichino Y., Floor SN., Fujiwara K., Mito M., Dodo K., Sodeoka M., Imataka H., Honma T., Fukuzawa K., Ito T., and Ingolia NT.:
    "The translation inhibitor Rocaglamide targets a bimolecular cavity between eIF4A and polypurine RNA"
    Mol. Cell. 73(4):738-748. (2019)
  • 3.AkichikaS., Hirano S (equal contribution)., Shichino Y., Suzuki T., Nishimasu H., Ishitani R., Sugita A., Hirose Y., Iwasaki S., Nureki O., and Suzuki T.:
    "Cap-specific terminal N6-methylation of RNA by an RNA polymerase II?associated methyltransferase"
    Science. 11;363(6423) (2019)
  • 4.Kurihara Y., Makita Y., Kawashima M., Fujita T., Iwasaki S., and Matsui M.:
    "Transcripts from downstream alternative transcription start sites evade uORF-mediated inhibition of gene expression in Arabidopsis
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 115(30):7831-7836 (2018)
  • 5.Iwasaki S. and Ingolia NT.:
    "The Growing Toolbox for Protein Synthesis Studies"
    Trends Biochem Sci. 42(8):612-624 (2017)
  • 6.Iwasaki S., Floor SN., and Ingolia NT.:
    "Rocaglates convert DEAD-box protein eIF4A into a sequence-selective translational repressor"
    Nature 534(7608), 558-61 (2016)
  • 7.Werner A., Iwasaki S., Teerikorpi N., Fedrigo I., Ingolia NT., and Rape M.:
    "Cell fate determination by ubiquitin-dependent regulation of ribosome function"
    Nature 525(7570), 523-7 (2015)
  • 8.Iwasaki S., Sasaki MH. (equal contribution), Sakaguchi Y., Suzuki T., Tadakuma H., and Tomari Y.:
    "Defining fundamental steps in the assembly of Drosophila RNAi enzyme comple"
    Nature 521(7553), 533-6 (2015)
  • 9.Iwasaki S., Kobayashi M. (equal contribution), Yoda M., Sakaguchi Y., Katsuma S., Suzuki T., and Tomari Y.:
    "Hsc70/Hsp90 chaperone machinery mediates ATP-dependent RISC loading of small RNA duplexes"
    Mol. Cell. 39(2), 292-9 (2010)
  • 10.Iwasaki S., Kawamata T., and Tomari Y.:
    "Drosophila Argonaute1 and Argonaute2 employ distinct mechanisms for translational repression"
    Mol Cell. 34(1), 58-67 (2009)

Recent Research Results

Annual research report

Related Links

Lab Members

Principal investigator

Shintaro Iwasaki
Chief Scientist

Core members

Eriko Matsuura
Research Scientist
Yuichi Shichino
Special Postdoctoral Researcher
Haruna Yamashiro
Postdoctoral Researcher
Mingming Chen
International Program Associate
Antonios Apostolopoulos
International Program Associate
Peixun Han
International Program Associate
Yusuke Kimura
Student Trainee
Tomoya Fujita
Student Trainee
Hironori Saito
Student Trainee
Shiho Makino
Research Fellow
Mari Mito
Technical Staff I
Rie Yokoyama
Special Temporary Employee

Contact Information

S205 Bioscience Bldg,
2-1 Hirosawa,
Wako, Saitama
351-0198, Japan
Email: shintaro.iwasaki [at] riken.jp