Biotechnology Research Institute for Drug Discovery
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※ Glycan Lectin Engineering Research Group was reorganized as Cellular Glycome-targeted Technology Research Group as of May 2, 2016.
Glycan Lectin Engineering Research Group

We focus our research efforts on technology development and its transfer to companies in relation to biological drugs and stem cell qualification, in which glycans play critical roles. In order to accelerate these bridging studies, we intend development of innovative biological drugs and realization of regenerative medicine by means of our original technologies such as lectin microarray, supported molecular matrix electrophoresis, and cell culture methods using improved growth factors. Our final goal is to return our outcome to society through a national project, Tsukuba International Strategic Zone and individual collaboration with relevant companies.

Group's Research Theme

Development and industrial applications of lectin-based technologies for regenerative medicine and drug discovery
 



Development and industrial applications of lectin-based technologies for regenerative medicine and drug discovery

Our goal is to develop novel technologies for stem cell qualification, drug discovery, and homeostasis qualification using our glycan-lectin engineering technologies (high-density lectin microarray, glycoconjugate microarray, frontal affinity chromatography, recombinant lectin library, lectin engineering technologies, etc.), and transfer them to industry to realize practical use. Our strategy allowed us to discover a human pluripotent stem cell-specific lectin (rBC2LCN/AiLecS1) and to successfully develop technologies to detect and eliminate tumorigenic human pluripotent stem cells for safe stem cell therapy through collaboration with a company.

Ciliated cells differentiated from ES cells
 


Development and applications of advanced technologies for glycoconjugate analysis

Mucins are a family of heavily glycosylated high-molecular-mass proteins. They are known as constituents of saliva and tear fluid and are produced by mucosal epithelial cells. Mucins have long been implicated in tumor progression and infection. We have developed a new type of membrane electrophoresis, supported molecular matrix electrophoresis (SMME) that can simply separate and characterize mucins, and applied this technique to disease biomarker discovery. Moreover, we study novel, robust, and quantitative evaluation of glycosylation heterogeneity on biopharmaceuticals and aim to contribute to advanced manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals.

Adult neurogenesis: Effects on neuronal- and /or mental-disorders
 

Analysis of the functional mechanism of sugar chains on bioactive growth factors

Growth factors are multi-functional proteins for controlling cell growth, differentiation and so on. We are interested in the functional mechanisms of sugar chains to modulate the bioactivity of several growth factors. The goal of our research is to make an innovative contribution in the pharmaceutical and medical field by utilizing the sugar chain functions integrated in the bioactive proteins.

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Research Achievements

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Staff Members

Position & Name Email Address
Prime Senior Researcher
Jun HIRABAYASHI
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Deputy Director, Research Institute
Masashi SUZUKI
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Chief Senior Researcher
Akihiko KAMEYAMA
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Senior Researcher
Masahiro ASADA
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Senior Researcher
Hiroaki TATENO
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