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What the Virology is heading to?

What the Virology is heading to?

We are still far from the complete understanding of viral life, which is extraordinarily accurate, skillful and even flexible. It is always that one solution generates next mysteries. We, however, must continue to study viruses to know life science and to control viral infection.

Research Interests

Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV)

Kaposi's sarcoma was increased in the AIDS epidemic 1980's. A virus, KSHV was the etiologic agent to cause it. KSHV become an episome after entering cells as a default, establishing latent infection. Latent infection is one of the features that herpesviridae establishes. In the latency, it is thought that a few genes are expressed, whereas most of the viral genes more than a hundred are totally shut down. Kaposi's sarcoma, primary effusion lymphoma and multicentric Csstleman's disease that KSHV is involved in emerge under AIDS setting and the viral latency. Namely, oncogenic potential of KSHV comes out in immunosuppressive state and the latency could be important for the oncogenesis. We have been trying to elucidate how the virus maintain its latency and how the virus is involved in its related oncogenesis.

Hepatitis B virus (HBV)

A lot of mysteries about HBV that was found more than a half century ago are remained to solve. No infection system has been established yet. Just 3.2kb partially double stranded DNA genome encodes four genes to carry out the life cycle in parenchymal hepatocytes. Strange to say, this virus has reverse transcription in its replication process. It is the most important issue that we understand totally the virus life cycle and pathophysiology to explore perfect treatment strategies.

Borna Disease Virus(BDV)

Borna disease virus (BDV) is a neurotropic RNA virus. One of the characteristics is that BDV infect persistently in the nucleus. Acute BDV infection causes a fatal encephalitis in horses and cows. On the other hand, persistent BDV infection causes behavioral abnormalities such as abnormal social interactions. We are interested in the mechanisms of these behavioral abnormalities. Furthermore, BDV can be used as a tool for investigating biology in the nucleus.


Retrotransposons account for About 40% of the human genome. LINE-1 (Long Interspersed Nuclear Element-1), one of retrotransposons, is still tranposing itself to other loci of the human genome.Recent studies have suggested that retrotransposons can interact with various viruses.We? have been trying to understand mechanisms and significances of these interactions.

In addition, we are of course very interested in virus causing phenomenon. Not limited to KSHV or HBV, you can try to study, if you have a good idea.

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