Research Interests
 Development of Immunoadhesins and peptide drugs to treat human deseases by using computer simulation.

1. Development of in silico molecular evolutionanl screening system
The application of molecular evolution is proving to be extremely well suited for the search for compounds with improved activity or performance, particular for identification of nucleic acids or peptides. Genetics makes it possible to employ sequential rounds of screening and selection, followed by further mutation, to allow for the generation of compounds adapted for a desired target or under specific conditions. Phage display and other related techniques have been used extensively for this purpose. We developed in silico molecular evolutional screening system that can be identify the protein sequences on the basis of its binding affinity to a target of interest.

2. Development of Immunoadhesins
Interleukin 10 (IL-10) is produced by various types of human cancer, including malignant melanoma, and plays an important role in negative regulation of cell-mediated immune responses against tumors. We have developed immunoadhesins, combining the extracellular domain of human interleukin 10 receptor 1 (IL-10R1) with the Fc regions of human IgG1 heavy chain and investigated their capability of blocking the biological activities of human IL-10. Monomeric and dimeric immunoadhesins (IL-10R1/IgG1) constructs were tested for capturing human IL-10 and blocking its biological activities. purified monomeric IL-10 immunoadhesin protein showed IL-10 capturing efficacy compatible with that of IL-10-specific monoclonal antibodies. Collectively, these studies indicate that IL-10 immunoadhesins, especially in monomeric form, are potent inhibitors of biological activities of IL-10 and suggest that these molecules, alone or in conjunctions with other immunotherapeutic approaches, can be utilized for the immuno-targeting of IL-10 producing tumors.

3. Development of peptide drugs
Our mutational studies on Hb S showed that the Hb S beta73His variant (beta6Val and beta73His) promoted polymerization, while Hb S beta73Leu (beta6Val and beta73Leu) inhibited polymerization. On the basis of these results, we speculated that EF-helix peptides containing beta73His interact with beta4Thr in Hb S and compete with Hb S, resulting in inhibition of Hb S polymerization. computer docking analysis suggested a lower energy for interaction of Hb S with the 15-mer beta73His peptide compared to peptides containing other amino acids at this position. These results suggest that the 15-mer beta73His peptide interacts with Hb S via the beta4Thr in the betaS-globin chain in Hb S. This interaction may influence hydrogen bond interaction between beta73Asp and beta4Thr in Hb S polymers and interfere in hydrophobic interactions of beta6Val, leading to inhibition of Hb S polymerization.

Copyright(C) 2009- Dept. of Bioinfor., Chiba Univ. All Rights Reserved.