Ecological Developmental Adaptability Life Sciences :
Biological Dynamics


Assistant Professor SEKINE Sayaka
Campus Aobayama campus
Laboratory Histogenetic Dynamics
Tel +81-22-795-6701
E-mail sayaka.sekine.d7@tohoku.ac.jp
Born in Yokohama, grew up in Tokyo and now become a mother of 2 children. I have been attracted by the beauty of the patterns found in nature thus aimed to be a researcher to reveal the underlying mechanism. Meeting to passionate and unique researchers is also very exciting aspect of this work. 
2003 - 2007      B.S. The University of Tokyo
2007 - 2012      Ph.D. Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, The University of Tokyo 
2012 – 2013    Postdoctoral fellow, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, The University of Tokyo
2013 – 2016     Postdoctoral researcher, University of California, San Francisco, USA
2016 – 2020     Postdoctoral researcher, RIKEN Center for Biosystems Dynamics Research 
2021 – present    Assistant professor, Graduate School of Life Sciences, Tohoku university
Selected Publications
Sayaka Sekine, Masayuki Miura and Takahiro Chihara “Organelles in developing neurons: Essential regulators of neuronal morphogenesis and function” The International Journal of Developmental Biology, 53, pp19-27, 2009
Sayaka Sekine, Shuka Haraguchi, Kinhong Chao, Tomoko Kato, Liqun Luo, Masayuki Miura and Takahiro Chihara. “Meigo governs dendrite targeting specificity by modulating Ephrin level and N-glycosylation” Nature Neuroscience, 16 (6), pp683-691, 2013
Daichi Kamiyama*, Sayaka Sekine*, Benjamin Barsi-Rhyne, Jeffrey Hu, Baohui Chen, Luke A. Gilbert, Hiroaki Ishikawa, Manuel D. Leonetti, Wallace F. Marshall, Jonathan S. Weissman and Bo Huang (* equal contribution). “Versatile protein tagging in cells with split fluorescent protein” Nature Communications, 7, 11046, 2016
Manuel D. Leonetti*, Sayaka Sekine*, Daichi Kamiyama, Jonathan S. Weissman and Bo Huang (* equal contribution). “A scalable strategy for high-throughput GFP tagging of endogenous human proteins” Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. USA, 113, E3501-E3508, 2016
Marie Anzo, Sayaka Sekine, Shirin Makihara, Kinhong Chao, Masayuki Miura and Takahiro Chihara. “Dendritic Eph organizes dendrodendritic segregation in discrete olfactory map formation in Drosophila” Genes and Development, 31 (10), pp1054-1065, 2017
Siyu Feng, Sayaka Sekine, Veronica Pessino, Han Li, Manuel D. Leonetti and Bo Huang. “Improved split fluorescent proteins for endogenous protein labeling” Nature Communications, 8, 370, 2017
Toshiya Ando, Sayaka Sekine, Sachi Inagaki, Kazuyo Misaki, Laurent Badel, Hiroyuki Moriya, Mustafa M Sami, Yuki Itakura, Takahiro Chihara, Hokto Kazama, Shigenobu Yonemura, Shigeo Hayashi.“Nanopore formation in the cuticle of an insect olfactory sensillum” Current Biology, 29(9), 1512-1520, e6, 2019
Activities in Academic Societies
The Molecular Biology Society of Japan, Japanese Society of Developmental Biologists

Recent Activities

Tubular networks are essential for supporting organismal life by permitting circulation of vital nutrition and air.  During the expansion of Drosophila tracheal tube, regularly arrayed supracellular circumferential actin cables appear underneath the apical membrane. By super-resolution imaging, I revealed that the actin cables were formed from rapid interactions of submicron actin clusters. The actin clusters were able to sense the tissue axis and showed dominant motility toward the circumferential orientation. Currently, I am interested in the interplay between the behavior of intracellular actin cytoskeleton and the tissue morphogenesis.

Message to Students

As you might have plenty of time, capacity and flexibility during undergraduate and graduate school period, please challenge new things and pursue your interests. Research is mostly not easy to find an answer, but therefore the moment when you grasp the truth is exciting. I hope we can share the moment together.