Research

Integrative Anthropology
Mariko HASEGAWA Hitomi HONGO Nobuyuki KUTSUKAKE Hiroo NASU
Behavioral Biology
Kentaro ARIKAWA Michiyo KINOSHITA Finlay STEWART
Evolutionary Biology
Yoko SATTA Tatsuya OTA Hideyuki TANABE Jun GOJOBORI Yohey TERAI
Theoretical Biology
Akira SASAKI Hideki INNAN Hisashi OHTSUKI Shohei TAKUNO
Science and Society
Kenji ITO Kaori IIDA Nozomi MIZUSHIMA Yukinori ONISHI
Collaboration support staff
Atsuko MATSUSHITA

Integrative Anthropology

Mariko HASEGAWAProfessor

ehavioral ecology, Human behavioral ecology, Evolutionary psychology

Main interest of my research is to understand human behavior and psychology from the perspective of evolution. Basic assumption is that human brain is the product of evolution, with many biases that were adaptive in the ancient environment. I am interested in the phenomena like homicide, child abuse, demographic transition, long period of adolescence, etc.

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Hitomi HONGOAssociate Professor

Environmental Archaeology (Zooarchaeology), Palaeoanthropology

My main research focus on the process of animal exploitation patterns in prehistory and the process of domestication in Southwest Asia as well as in East Asia. I analyze animal bone remains from archaeological sites to investigate man-animal relationships and impact of human activities on prehistoric environment.

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Nobuyuki KUTSUKAKELecturer

Animal behaviour, Behavioral ecology, Primatology

My researches aim to understand (1) social behaviour and cognition in group-living mammals and other vertebrates (birds and fish), (2) evolutionary forces shaping biological diversity. My mission is to prepare an environment in which young students and researchers can devote their time/energy to study their favorite animals.

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Hiroo NASUAssistant Professor

Archaeobotany, Environmental Archaeology

My research focuses on the evolutionary history of human‐plant interactions based on the study of plant remains from archaeological sites. Current research interests are the co-evolution of domesticated plants and human subsistence systems; the impacts of agriculture and exploitation of forest on past environments and societies; and weed evolution and diversity.

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Behavioral Biology

Kentaro ARIKAWAProfessor

Neuroethology, Sensory physiology

More than 70% of animals are arthropods whose main visual organ is the compound eye: compound eyes are therefore the most common visual organ on the earth. How are these eyes are organized? What kind of visual world do the animals have? We currently focus on the mechanism and evolution of insect color vision using many experimental techniques, including behavioral analysis, electrophysiology, anatomy, optical physiology, molecular biology and computer simulation.

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Michiyo KINOSHITALecturer

Behavioral neuroscience (Neuroethology)

I am interested in how animals perceive the world and how the world is represented in their brains. To answer these questions, we study perceptional world of foraging swallowtail butterflies and neuronal mechanism underlying the behavior. These studies will help to understand co-evolution of butterfly visual world and various traits of flowers.

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Finlay STEWARTAssistant Professor

Neuroethology, neuroinformatics

Despite having brains a million times smaller than ours, insects behave in impressively sophisticated ways, e.g. foraging in a dynamic 3D environment. My goal is to understand the algorithms behind these behaviours, to reverse-engineer their evolutionary “programming”. I do this through a combination of behavioural experiments and computational modelling.

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Evolutionary Biology

Yoko SATTAProfessor

Evolutionary Physiology, Genome Genetics

Evolution of genes responsible for physiological traits reflects the history of adaptation of living organisms to the extant environment. Our research group is studying the evolution of genes associated with sensory systems, immunity, human brain function, domestication processes etc, by comparing genomes or transcriptomes between/within different species.

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Tatsuya OTAAssociate Professor

Molecular evolution, Evolution of biosystems

Research Outline: Diversified biosystems exist for reproduction and immunity, which have large impact on the survival of species. To understand evolutionary mechanisms to generate heterogeneous biosystems, we are mainly studying the evolution of vertebrate immune systems and of plant reproductive systems of knotweed family (Polygonaceae) including buckwheat.

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Hideyuki TANABEAssociate Professor

Molecular Cytogenetics, Evolutionary Studies of Chromosomes and Genomics

The chromosomes are occupied in the cell nucleus as “chromosome territories” that are highly compartmentalized and radially positioned in correlation with their gene densities and physical sizes. I am trying to find how these chromosome territories and genes are spatially organized and regulated within the nucleus by microdissection and 3D-FISH techniques.

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Jun GOJOBORILecturer

Physical Anthropology, Molecular Evolution, Population Genetics

Our species, Homo sapiens, diverged from the common ancestor six to seven million years ago. We originated from Africa and spread worldwide. By comparing genetic diversity between species and within species, our group is investigating what kind of genes were involved in adaptation during human evolution.

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Yohey TERAIAssistant Professor

The mechanism of adaptation and speciation

Biodiversity has been generated through numerous adaptation and speciation events throughout evolutionary history. My research takes the next step forward by trying to reveal 1) the mechanism of adaptation, and 2) the mechanisms of speciation caused by ecological adaptation by using vertebrates and invertebrates.

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Theoretical Biology

Akira SASAKIProfessor

Mathematical Biology, Theoretical Evolutionary Biology

Akira Sasaki is working on the stochastic theory of population genetics, host-parasite coevolution, species packing theory, spatially explicit models of ecology and epidemiology, intrahost dynamics of pathogen and immune system, bet-hedging in changing environment, evolution of cooperation, evolution of mutability in fitness landscapes, restriction avoidance and the evolution of word frequency in phage genome, spatial mosaic formation in Müllerian mimicry system, epidemiology and evolution of virulence in small worlds networks, and on other problems in theoretical population biology.

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Hideki INNANAssociate Professor

Population genetics, Evolutionary genomics

Organisms evolve as a consequence of the evolution of their genomes. We aim to understand how genomes evolve under what kind of evolutionary forces including natural selection. We develop population genetic models and apply them to empirical data such as nucleotide polymorphism and copy number variation within a species and divergence between species.

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Hisashi OHTSUKILecturer

Mathematical Biology, Evolutionary Game Theory

I study evolutionary origin of sociality through theoretical modeling. My research topics include kin selection, direct reciprocity, indirect reciprocity, punishment, and reward. I am also interested in evolution of human life-history strategies, evolution of learning, and gene-culture coevolution. I use the combination of analytical and numerical methods in my study.

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Shohei TAKUNOAssistant Professor

Evolutionary Genetics and Epigenetics

Epigenetics focuses on heritable changes in gene expression without changes of DNA sequences. Epigenetic modifications including DNA methylation and histone modifications play a significant role in altering such expression changes. Shohei Takuno is investigating the evolutionary processes that shape the genome-wide patterns of epigenetic modifications, "epigenomes", mainly in plant species.

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Science and Society

Kenji ITOAssociate Professor

History of Science

My thematic interests include historical studies on production and transmission of knowledge, and reproduction of knowledge workers.  The history of physics in the 20th century is the subject of my study, and recently I focus on the history of quantum and nuclear physics in Japan before and after World War II.
"Science and Society" Program: http://sas.soken.ac.jp/en

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Kaori IIDAAssociate Professor

History of Science

I am currently examining the history of biology in Japan in the 1920s to 1960s. In particular, I am interested in how genetics developed through various Japanese social contexts such as modernization, World Wars, the U.S. Occupation, and Cold War, and how genetic knowledge was utilized in society.
"Science and Society" Program: http://sas.soken.ac.jp/en

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Nozomi MIZUSHIMAAssistant Professor

Science, Technology and Society, Gender studies of Science and Technology

Science and technology (S&T) are deeply incorporated into our modern life. My principal research interests are in the relationship between S&T and society, especially public experiences and their impact on gender norm/identities. I am currently investigating the reproductive technologies and women’s experiences, and also mothers’ movement against radiation contamination emerged after Fukushima nuclear incident.
"Science and Society" Program: http://sas.soken.ac.jp/en

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Yukinori OnishiAssistant Professor

Philosophy of Science

Philosophers have long been interested in worldview and the nature of our knowledge of the world. Philosophy of science aims to answer these questions by looking at scientific theories and examining its methodologies, for science is one of the most effective means to produce knowledge about the world.
"Science and Society" Program: http://sas.soken.ac.jp/en

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Collaboration support staff

Atsuko MATSUSHITAAssistant Professor

Ultrastructural neuroanatomy

The properties of neural processing depend on morphological factors such as number and shape of synapses, which can be investigated by electron microscopy (EM). I take a comparative approach combined with EM to elucidate general principles of neural functions, e.g. color vision. I also manage our communal microscope facility (TEM, SEM & CLSM).
Communal Microscope Facilities