Department of Life Science and Biotechnology

Realizing a healthy, active, aged society and creating a sustainable society

A society in which people live a long life in good health and at ease, and a sustainable society with reduced environmental load is desired. We are contributing to life innovation by developing new technologies to evaluate health and to promote drug discovery, as well as to maintain, improve, and recover health according to individual conditions. We are also contributing to green innovation by developing technologies to reduce environmental loads using bioprocesses.


New Research Results

Elucidation of the Mechanism of Action of Anti-Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) Drug and the Mechanism of Drug Resistance Using HBV Reverse Transcriptase (RT)-Chimeric Human Immunodeficiency Virus RT

HIV reverse transcriptase (RT) is fairly stable and the structure of its active site resembles that of hepatitis B virus RT. AIST generated a modified HIV RT that binds to entecavir (ETV), a nucleoside analog drug for hepatitis B treatment, and analyzed its three-dimensional structure. It was found that hydrophobic interactions of ETV are critical for its entry and binding to the active site of the modified RT and that ETV bonds stably due to a hydrophobic interaction with the bottom of the active site.


Structure of a modified reverse transcriptase of HIV bonded with entecavir

Rapid Development of Insecticide Resistance in Pests via Symbiotic Bacteria

AIST has elucidated that only several times of use of an insecticide causes accumulation of insecticide-degrading bacteria, which belong to the genus Burkholderia, in the soil, and insecticide resistance can develop rapidly in the pest Riptortus pedestris, when the pest acquires the insecticide-degrading bacteria from the soil. The results of this research demonstrated that insecticide resistance could develop rapidly in just several weeks. The same tendency was observed in the field environment.


Dynamics of insecticide-degrading bacteria in the soil and the gut of pests under repeated spraying of insecticide

Research Unit

Biotechnology Research Institute for Drug Discovery
Biomedical Research Institute
Health Research Institute
Bioproduction Research Institute
Molecular Profiling Research Center for Drug Discovery

Open Innovation Laboratory

Since FY 2016, as a part of the “Open Innovation Arena concept” promoted by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), AIST has created the concept of “open innovation laboratories” (OILs), collaborative research bases located on university campuses, and has been engaged in their provision. We are planning to establish more than ten OILs by FY 2020.

AIST will merge the basic research carried out at universities, etc. with AIST?s goal-oriented basic research and applied technology development, and will promote bridging research and evelopment and industry by the establishment of OILs.

  • AIST-Waseda University Computational Bio Big-Data Open Innovation Laboratory (CBBD-OIL)
  • AIST-Osaka University Advanced Photonics and Biosensing Open Innovation Laboratory (PhotoBIO-OIL)

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