Honors & Awards

Project Researcher TOMINAGA Kento (Dept. of Integrated Biosciences) Won the Excellent Poster Award at the JST Genome Programming Project CREST-Sakigake Joint Conference

Release:Dec 23, 2022 Update:Dec 23, 2022
  • Honors & Awards

Project Researcher TOMINAGA Kento in the Department of Integrated Bioscience, the GSFS, received the Excellent Poster Award at the 5th CREST-Sakigake Joint Conference of Japan Science and Technology Angency's Genome Programming Project held from December 6-9, 2022, in Kobe City, Hyogo.

Identification of novel virus-derived helicase loader genes in Vibrionaceae by contrapositive genetics
Kento Tominaga, Yuki Nishimura, Kimiho Omae, and Wataru Iwasaki.

This research identified novel essential genes in the Vibrionaceae bacterial genomes that have no DNA helicase loader gene essential for replication. These genes' function is unknown, and their sequence does not have much similarity with those of helicase loader genes, the function of which is known. However, the estimation of their protein structure by the AlphaFold2 program indicated the similarity with the structure of helicase loader genes that the virus (bacteriophage) carries. This suggested that these genes were acquired over 20 times in the Vibrionaceae from the virus by horizontal transfer, and genes critical for the survival can be replaced frequently by the virus genes.

Message from the Winner:
This time the research had an interesting result, incidentally though, linking all my research interestsーessential genes, virus, and marine bacteriaーby the bioinformatics technique the Iwasaki Lab.'s specialty. I could win the award and continue my research because of all support from many people I received through the research. My next goals are to practically validate the function of these genes in experiments and elucidate the unknown functions of many other genes existing in this world.


Dr. TOMINAGA Kento receiving the award certificate from Professor SIOMI Haruhiko (Keio University), the Research Supervisor of the JST Genome Programming Project.