Yanagisawa & Funato Laboratory|International Institute for Integrative Sleep Medicine (WPI-IIIS)|University of Tsukuba

Day and Night - Why do we sleep?Orexin/MCH/THase in lateral hypothalamus"Orexinergic" projectionsOrexin neurons


Solving the mystery of sleep
~Developing new intervention methods for healthy slumber~ 

The familiar phenomenon of sleep, and even why we sleep, is a great mystery in neuroscience. Although our discovery of orexin has helped to unlock the door to the sleep disorder narcolepsy, the black box of sleep/wake control still remains a challenge for scientists. In order to crack open the black box, Yanagisawa/Funato Laboratory is engaged in basic research using forward genetic analysis, in vivo calcium imaging, patch-clamp electrophysiology in brain slices with simultaneous multicellular recording and imaging, etc., in addition to drug discovery research that targets the orexin receptor. Already, three or more causative gene mutations that play an important role in sleep-wake regulation have been successfully identified to date through advances in our forward genetics research. Experiments are ongoing each day with the aim of solving the mystery of sleep, and contributing to the reduction of sleep disorders and associated diseases.

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News & Topics

2015.4.17
The media coverage page (media coverage) was updated.
2015.4.15
The media coverage page (awards) was updated.
2015.4.8
The research results page (journal articles) was updated.
2015.4.8
The member list page was updated.
2015.3.30
Prof. Yanagisawa was awarded the Physiology in Perspectives: Walter B. Cannon Memorial Award from the American Physiological Society (APS) on March 28, 2015. (click here for award information)
2015.1.13
The English broadcast version of TV Tokyo's "World Business Satellite" segment with Yanagisawa/Funato Lab and IIIS is now available for viewing as "Channel JAPAN" #41 on Ustream. (click here for video)
2014.12.17
The media coverage page was updated.
2014.11.19
Prof. Yanagisawa and Prof. Nagase of IIIS will be featured on BS Fuji's "Galileo X" on November 23, 2014 from 11:30 am. (click here for more information)
2014.11.13
Prof. Yanagisawa will have a radio interview with J-WAVE's "PRIME FACTOR" on November 15, 2014 from 11:00 pm.
2014.11.12
Yanagisawa/Funato Lab and IIIS will be featured in a segment on TV Tokyo's "World Business Satellite" on November 13, 2014 from 11:30 pm. (click here for more information)
2014.11.4
The research results page (journal articles) was updated.
2014.10.1
The research results page (journal articles, conference presentations, symposia, outreach activities) was updated.
2014.8.19
The public data page was updated.
2014.8.18
Prof. Yanagisawa is scheduled to speak at "The Science of Sleep" – Public lectures during the 33rd Annual Meeting of the Japan Society of Adolescentology to be held on August 29, 2014. (click here for poster)
2014.8.5
The contact/access page was updated.
2014.8.1
Registration is now open for the international symposium "Homeodynamics in Clocks, Sleep and Metabolism". (Click here to register)
2014.7.31
The research results page (journal articles) was updated.
2014.7.30
A delegation of 13 students from Macau University visited Yanagisawa/Funato Laboratory, attending a lecture by Prof. Yanagisawa and touring the Innovation Laboratory facilities.
2014.7.29
The international symposium “Homeodynamics in Clocks, Sleep and Metabolism” will be held on 2014.9.24. More information is available. Registration will be available soon.
2014.7.25
Prof. Yanagisawa was interviewed by a high-profile journalist, Soichiro Tahara, for a piece entitled "Innovators in Japan Changing the World". It will be covered in the monthly journal "Ushio" in the near future.
2014.7.23
Yanagisawa/Funato Laboratory website has been renewed.
2014.5.25
The media coverage page was updated.
2014.4.1
Upon conclusion of the FIRST Program, the Center for Behavioral Molecular Genetics website has been relaunched as "Yanagisawa/Funato Laboratory" for the International Institute for Integrative Sleep Medicine under the World Premier International Research Center Initiative (WPI).
2014.3.31
Funding Program for World-Leading Innovative R&D on Science and Technology (FIRST Program) has ended.
2014.3.28
The media coverage page was updated.
2014.3.26
The research results page was updated.
2014.3.3
Prof. Yanagisawa is featured in p24-27 of the “FIRST Results Digest” (FIRST Program).
2014.2.28
The “Funding Program for World-Leading Innovative R&D on Science and Technology (FIRST) Results Digest: 30 People Creating State-of-the-Art Science and Technology in Japan” was published on February 28, 2014.
2014.2.14
Prof. Yanagisawa will appear in the second special session of the “FIRST EXPO 2014” on March 1, 2014.
2014.2.7
Information on the “FIRST EXPO 2014 – Science and Technology from Japan to the World”, taking place from February 28, 2014 to March 1, 2014 is available. (click here)
2014.1.23
The 2nd Annual IIIS Symposium ~Solving the mystery of sleep~ was a success, gathering about 150 participants. We would like to thank everyone for their attendance. The event report is available. (click here)

Past News & Topics

Principal Investigators

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Masashi Yanagisawa
Professor, Faculty of Medicine
Director, International Institute for Integrative Sleep Medicine (IIIS)
University of Tsukuba
>>Message from Masashi

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Hiromasa Funato
Visiting Professor, Faculty of Medicine
International Institute for Integrative Sleep Medicine (IIIS)
University of Tsukuba
>>Message from Hiromasa


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