Researcher Information


Associate Professor

To unravel mysteries in the birth of animals

Department of Biological Sciences, Reproductive and Developmental Biology


To elucidate cellular and mollecular mechanisms of vertebrate oogenesis and embryogenesis

FieldCell Biology, Molecular Biology, Developmental Biology, Genetics
KeywordZebrafish, Mouse, Maternal Factor, Oogeneis, Early Development, Insertional Mutation, Transposon, Meiosis, Mitotic Cleavage, Morphogenesis, Embryonic Axis Formation

Introduction of Research

Mechanisms by which fertilizable eggs are formed and highly organized individual animals are developed subsequently after fertilization remains largely unknown, although oogenesis and development of many species have been morphologically analyzed. Recent studies demonstrated that tens of thousands of mRNAs are accumulated in vertebrate oocytes. Our goal is to understand cellular and molecular mechanisms of oogenesis and early development of vertebrates by discovering functions of these transcripts deposited in oocytes.

Maternal factors and vertebrate development
Screening for maternal factors by a gene trap method
mRNA forming granules in the oocyte cytoplasm

Representative Achievements

High-sensitivity and high-resolution in situ hybridization of coding and long non-coding RNAs in vertebrate ovaries and testes. N. Takei, T. Nakamura, S. Kawamura, Y. Takada, Y. Satoh, S.P. Kimura, T. Kotani. Biological Procedures Online, 2018, vol.20, issue.6.
Regulation of translationally repressed mRNAs in zebrafish and mouse oocytes. In: Klock, M., ed. Oocytes: Maternal information and functions. T. Kotani, K. Maehata, N. Takei. Results and Problems in Cell Differentiation, 2017, vol.63, Chapter 13, p297-324.
Formation of mos RNA granules in the zebrafish oocyte that differ from cyclin B1 RNA granules in distribution, density and regulation.M. Horie, T. Kotani. European Journal of Cell Biology, 2016, vol.96, p563-573.
Real-time imaging of actin filaments in the zebrafish oocyte and embryo.
Y. Nukada, M. Horie, A. Fukui, T. Kotani, M. Yamashita.
Cytoskeleton, 2015, vol.72, p491-501.
Cyclin B1 mRNA translation is temporally controlled through formation and disassembly of RNA granules.
T. Kotani, K. Yasuda, R. Ota, M. Yamashita. Journal of Cell Biology, 2013, vol.202, p1041-1055.
Academic degreePh.D.