Biology DivisionLaboratory of Structural Biology
Our mission is (1) elucidating the molecular mechanisms of life phenomena that can be a target for developing medicines and (2) developing a structural basis for designing chemicals that have more potent activities via analyzing the structure of the chemicals as a complex with their target proteins
Laboratory Head Takao Shimizu
Nobuo N. Noda
Number of Members 6
1. Main subject: Molecular mechanisms of autophagy
Autophagy is an evolutionarily conserved system that sequesters cytoplasmic materials into autophagosomes and delivers them to lysosomes for degradation. Autophagy maintains our health through degrading superfluous or harmful materials.
Autophagosome formation involves complicated membrane dynamics whose mechanisms remain elusive.
2. Structural Biology of Autophagy
Understanding autophagy through determining the structure of ATG proteins using various methods
By analyzing purified proteins using various methods, we determine the structure of ATG proteins. Moreover, using structural information，we are developing chemicals that regulate autophagy with high specificity.
3. In vitro reconstitution of autophagic processes
Understanding autophagy through elucidating the in vitro functions of each ATG protein
By mixing ATG proteins and lipids, we reconstitute the autophagic processes in vitro, thereby understanding the molecular functions of each protein and autophagy.
4. Structural analysis of various drugs complexed with their target proteins
Understanding the binding mode through determining the structure of drug-target protein complex
By using structural information, we design drugs that inhibit their targets more efficiently.