Posts Tagged: Graduate School of Science

Meet Rong Shang

Meet Rong Shang

  Dr. Rong Shang is a chemist. In her words, ‘We are always making new stuff.’ She and her colleagues build molecules combining organic atoms, like carbon and hydrogen, with metals, like gold and platinum. Originally from China, Dr. Shang studied and worked in three different countries before coming to Japan. Now she is Assistant Professor at Hiroshima University. She previously talked with us about her work in the lab. Here, she tells us about her path to becoming a scientist, how research is like a soccer game, and the importance of thinking beyond oneself.   What got you interested in science in the first place? Growing up in China,… Read more

A magnet that can be strong or weak

A magnet that can be strong or weak

Humidity and pressure control new magnetic crystals Researchers at Hiroshima University, CNRS, and Université de Strasbourg synthesized crystals with magnetic properties that can change continuously and reversibly, a world first. The study was highlighted as a cover article of the journal “Inorganic Chemistry,” a publication of the American Chemical Society in March 2016. Recently, the scientific community has had immense interest in new types of magnets with the potential to create the next generation of energy efficient devices through innovations using materials science techniques. Common magnets, like those holding reminders on home refrigerators or turning car motors, are made of metal and metal oxides.  Newer magnets can be made with… Read more

Lasers melt rocks to reveal development of super-Earths and how giant impacts make magma

Lasers melt rocks to reveal development of super-Earths and how giant impacts make magma

Advanced laser shock technique puts magmas under highest-ever pressures New experiments provide insight into how Earth-type planets form when giant asteroids or planetesimals collide and how the interiors of such planets develop. Researchers at Hiroshima University, Osaka University, Ehime University, University of Tokyo, and the Chiba Institute of Technology collaborated to publish their research in the August 3, 2016 issue of Science Advances. “Our results provide a better understanding how impact-generated magmas evolve and allow us to model Earth-type planets’ inner structures. Collisions at these extreme temperatures and pressures created our own Earth and may have also formed the mantles of other Super Earth planets, for example CoRoT-7b and Kepler-10b,”… Read more

Power up when the temperature is down

Power up when the temperature is down

Transporting power sources in the coldest places may be easier with a new re-chargeable, non-metallic battery from Japan. This “eco battery” could provide portable sources of power in environments like refrigerated factories or extreme winter environments. Chemists from Hiroshima University developed a new synthesis method for organic radical batteries that are re-chargeable and continue to function at below-freezing temperatures.  The specific model prototyped by the Hiroshima University team has greater voltage than previously reported styles from other research groups around the world.  The method used to create this battery is an improvement on a report from the same Hiroshima University laboratory earlier in 2016. Most electrical devices use a lithium-ion… Read more

A clue to generate electric current without energy consumption at room temperature

A clue to generate electric current without energy consumption at room temperature

  A group of researchers in Japan and China identified the requirements for the development of new types of extremely low power consumption electric devices by studying Cr-doped (Sb, Bi)2Te3 thin films. This study has been reported in Nature Communications. At extremely low temperatures, an electric current flows around the edge of the film without energy loss, and under no external magnetic field. This attractive phenomenon is due to the material’s ferromagnetic properties; however, so far, it has been unclear how the material gains this property. For the first time, researchers have revealed the mechanism by which this occurs. “Hopefully, this achievement will lead to the creation of novel materials that… Read more

An alternative TALEN/CRISPR-mediated gene insertion technique described in detail

An alternative TALEN/CRISPR-mediated gene insertion technique described in detail

  A streamlined protocol for an alternative gene insertion method using genome editing technologies, the PITCh (Precise Integration into Target Chromosome) system, has been reported in Nature Protocols by Specially Appointed Lecturer Tetsushi Sakuma, Professor Takashi Yamamoto, Specially Appointed Associate Professor Ken-Ichi T Suzuki, and their colleagues at Hiroshima University, Japan. The PITCh system is more convenient and effective than existing methods for inserting foreign DNA into targeted genomic loci by using genome-editing tools. This new versatile technique can aid the rapid progression of research in fields such as screening of new drug candidates and creating cell or animal models of human diseases. Genome editing is an innovative technique used in genetic… Read more

Simultaneous live imaging of a specific gene’s transcription and dynamics

Simultaneous live imaging of a specific gene’s transcription and dynamics

The Real-time Observation of Localization and EXpression (ROLEX) system   Dr. Hiroshi Ochiai and his colleagues, Dr. Takeshi Sugawara (Research Center for the Mathematics on Chromatin Live Dynamics [RcMcD] at Hiroshima University) and Professor Takashi Yamamoto (Graduate School of Science at Hiroshima University), have established a novel live-imaging method termed the “Real-time Observation of Localization and EXpression (ROLEX)” system. This system enables simultaneous measurements of the transcriptional activity and nuclear position of endogenous genes using MS2 transcription imaging and clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) gene-imaging techniques.   Dr. Ochiai stated, “By using only existing techniques, such as the chromatin conformation capture (3C)-related method and fluorescence in situ hybridization… Read more

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Next-generation illumination using silicon quantum dot-based white-blue LED

  A Si quantum dot (QD)-based hybrid inorganic/organic light-emitting diode (LED) that exhibits white-blue electroluminescence has been fabricated by Professor Ken-ichi SAITOW (Natural Science Center for Basic Research and Development, Hiroshima University), Graduate student Yunzi XIN (Graduate School of Science, Hiroshima University), and their collaborators. A hybrid LED is expected to be a next-generation illumination device for producing flexible lighting and display, and this is achieved for the Si QD-based white-blue LED. For details, refer to “White-blue electroluminescence from a Si quantum dot hybrid light-emitting diode,” in Applied Physics Letters; DOI: 10.1063/1.4921415. The Si QD hybrid LED was developed using a simple method; almost all processes were solution-based and conducted at… Read more

A novel technique for gene insertion by genome editing

A novel technique for gene insertion by genome editing

Easy, accurate, and highly efficient gene knock-in in a variety of cells and organisms Using a novel gene knock-in technique, effective insertion of an exogenous gene was demonstrated in human cells and in animal models, including silkworms and frogs. This strategy universally enables gene knock-in not only in cultured cells, but also in various organisms. Genome editing using programmable nucleases enables homologous recombination (HR)-mediated gene knock-in. HR activity, however, is relatively low in most cultured cells and organisms. This problem presents technical hurdles for the application of HR-mediated knock-in technology in the field of life sciences. Professor Takashi Yamamoto and his colleagues, Dr. Ken-ichi T. Suzuki and Dr. Tetsushi Sakuma,… Read more