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Yuka Maeno-Hikichi, PhD

Research Scientist.

PhD University of Tokyo, MS Osaka University.

BS in Biology and Chemistry, International Christian University in Tokyo

Yuka received her BS in biology and chemistry from the International Christian University in Tokyo, Japan. She went on to receive her Master of Medical Sciences from Osaka University, studying IL-6 signal transduction. She then moved to the University of Tokyo and earned her PhD on the study of physical property of cadherin mediated cell-cell interaction using optical trap and optical tweezers. During her postdoc training, equipped with broad range of skills and knowledge, she moved onto studying several different themes in neuroscience such as glutamate transporter, voltage gated calcium channels, prion, immediate early gene Arc, TrpC channels, activity dependent synaptic vesicle cycling and NCAM in the neuromuscular junction formation and myelinogenesis in invertebrate. Throughout her scientific career, her primary interest has been molecular mechanism of cell-cell communication. She is currently conducting the preclinical research on Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease (PMD), a rare X-linked leukodystrophy and helping others in the lab for various physiological readout such as electrophysiology, calcium imaging, neuron-glia co-culture system. She also likes to work on the earthworm which is a good system to investigate the invertebrate model of glia including myelin producing cells. She hopes to find the molecular basis of earthworm myelin and regeneration property of myelin producing cells, neuron, glia and blasts cells as well as evolutional development and relationship of glial cells and immune cells in earthworm.