Faculty of Textile Science and Technology Research Activity2016|Shinshu Univ

50Department of Applied BiologyHarnessing the amazing powers of tiny microorganisms in our daily livesI am carrying out research to discover useful microorganisms from among the countless number that exist in nature and put them to use solving problems involving food, the environment, and energy. For instance, my lab is working on microbial chitin-degrading enzymes to effectively utilize chitin, an abundant biomass resource, and on molecular breeding of mushrooms to allow efficient use of their enzymes and metabolites.Many mysteries continue to surround tiny microorganisms. In fact, only about 1% of all microorganisms that exist in nature have been cultivated and given scientic names. The natural world is a treasure trove of unknown and valuable microorganisms.Outlook for researchGraduates are employed by companies that handle foods, alcoholic beverages, and chemical products. Typically, they enter industries that make use of biological systems.Outlook for students after graduationWe use numerous microorganisms in experiments, and there are over 1,000 species of microorganisms stored in the lab’s freezers.1.0 μm We discovered a novel bacterium that degrades chitin in moat water from Ueda Castle.A student examines the DNA of microorganisms using electrophoresis.Makoto ShimosakaProfessorProfessor Shimosaka took his current position in 2004 after working as an assistant professor in the Faculty of Textile Science and Technology at Shinshu University starting in 1985. His area of specialization is applied microbiology. He has handled numerous types of microorganisms since beginning his graduate research in college, including bacteria, yeasts, molds, and mushrooms.Department of Applied BiologyBiopolymers: Gaining an understanding of the function and structure of DNA and enzymes in order to explain their interactions and apply them to biotechnologyI examine the nature and structure of nucleic acids, which form DNA, and carcinogens and active oxygen, which damages DNA. My lab is also researching DNA repair enzymes that repair damaged DNA from a completely new perspective with the goal of clarifying how repair enzymes find damaged parts of the DNA and applying this knowledge to research into anti-carcinogenic drugs.Professor Shida joined the Faculty of Textile Science and Technology at Shinshu University in 1986 as a senior assistant professor after working as a research associate at the Nagoya University Chemical Instrument Center and as a doctoral researcher at Johns Hopkins University. He took his current position in 2009 after becoming an associate professor. His areas of specialization include nucleic acid chemistry, protein engineering, the science of biopolymer properties, and applied microorganism engineering.If we could clarify the functional structure of DNA and enzymes, we believe that knowledge could be applied in the medical domain and eectively used in the industrial production of biological materials.Outlook for researchGraduates are active in research centers at public research institutions and companies as well as at food product companies and fermented food companies, in the medical domain, and at scientic publishing companies.Outlook for students after graduationLeft: An electron microscope image of Kokuria rosea, a microorganism that lives in the ocean at a depth of 6,000 m (showing the brous substance around the cell body). Right: Fibrous protein obtained from a cultured cellAn explanation of the substrate recognition mechanism of very-early-stage enzymes before the formation of the enzyme-substrate complex, something that had not previously been considered for enzyme substrate recognition structure. Far left: The enzyme has not yet found the damaged DNA. Center: The amino acid on the surface of the enzyme has found the damage to the DNA (in the form of a hole). Far right: The enzyme is attempting to repair the damaged DNA.Toshio ShidaProfessor


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