Director : KASAHARA, Hironori
Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering
The health promotion based on chrono-nutrition and -exercise in older people -Comparative studies between Japan and Singapore-.
Establishment of the international center of frontier life science research and medical engineering in WABIOS platform.
Overview of research
An extension of healthy life expectancy is an important topic in order to improve QOL in older people, as well as to reduce the national healthcare budget. Both Japan and Singapore are experiencing aging society. Although genetic factors are similar between two countries, lifestyles in diet and/or exercise are quite different. Thus, we are conducting an assessment study of physical activity, dietary patterns, and gut microbiota in Japan. Both exercise and dietary interventions are proceeding, especially focused on the timing of day. In this project, our objective is to clarify differences and similarities of lifestyle in both countries, and investigate an effective strategy to extend a healthy life expectancy based on viewpoints of chrono-nutrition and exercise.
The interface between engineering and molecular life sciences has been fertile ground for advancing our understanding of complex biological systems. Engineered microstructures offer a diverse toolbox for cellular and molecular biologists to direct the placement of cells and small organisms, and to recreate biological functions in vitro. cells can be positioned and connected in a designed fashion, connectivity and community effects of cells studied. In this project, we develop new kinds of cell network screening platforms, which will enable reconstructing reliable minimum tissue models, so that cell and cell compartment specific drug responses can be monitored. The novel cell network platform allows cells to be positioned and connected in a designed fashion, which is important for high-resolution multi-methodological analysis and to facilitate in vitro experiments, i.e., quasi in vivo. We are working with functionally networking cells (e.g., cardiomyocytes, neurons) in order to understand the mechanisms and pharmacology behind their development and regeneration, with ultimate goal of being able to rapidly screen drugs for central organ system damage or degeneration due to aging.
Singapore team (WABIOS and collaborated Singapore institutes) and Japan team (Nishiwaseda Campus, Waseda Univ.) will concentrate on (1) developing novel materials and structures for interfacing electrodes with cells, and to work on 3D fluidic networks, (2) compartmentalized delivery of stimulants to cells, and (3) patch clamp and voltage clamp applications and on cell biological aspects. In the end of the project all these aspects will be brought together into the novel microfluidic platforms which can be probed optically and electrically, and which allow pharmacological manipulation of cells and subcellular compartments individually. This addressable and controllable tissue model system will provide unprecedented access to understanding the damage, recovery and re-establishment of organs after their injury or degeneration.
We expect two major outcomes from this project; (1) Quasi-in vivo cell network drug screening assay for drug discovery and drug approval using minimum number of animal cells and human iPS/ES cell derived cells, which can reduce the unnecessary animal tests and the risk of false negative/positive problems in clinical approval, and (2) the developed assays or screening microfabrications can be applied for diagnostic screenings as portable fast screening systems.
Kenji Yasuda (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Takafumi Inoue (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Toshio Ohshima (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Etsuro Ito (Professor, Faculty of Educational and Integrated Arts and Sciences)
Shigenobu Shibata (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Haruko Takeyama (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Michiaki Hamada (Associate Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Yasuo Kawakami (Professor, Faculty of Sport Sciences)
Fumiko Tanaka (Junior Researcher, Sustainable Food Supply, Agriculture, Bioscience Institute)
Masashi Miyashita (Associate Professor, Faculty of Sport Sciences)
Shinya Aoyama (Junior Researcher, Sustainable Food Supply, Agriculture, Bioscience Institute)
Hironori Kasahara(Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Ito.Etsuro(Professor, Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences)Tanaka,Fumiko(Junior Researcher, Faculty of Political Science and Economics)Hamada.Michiaki(Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Kenji Matsuura (Junior Researcher(Assistant Professor))
Akihiro Hattori (Junior Researcher(Assistant Professor))
Masaki Takahashi (Junior Researcher(Assistant Professor))
Masao Odaka(research assistant)
Mong Jamie Chen Yee