Dr Takanobu Tagawa

Research Fellow


Wellcome Trust Career Development Award Research Fellow (2024-2030)

Postdoctoral fellow (2017-2023)

Joseph Ziegelbauer Lab, HIV and AIDS Malignancy Branch, National Cancer Institute, USA

Doctoral Student (2011- 2017)

Wolfgang Hammerschmidt Lab, Research Unit Gene Vectors, Helmholtz Center Munich, Germany

Master Student (2009 - 2011)

Hideo Iba Lab, The Institution of Medical Science, University of Tokyo, Japan

Research Assistant (2007 - 2009)

Yuichi Iino Lab, Molecular Genetics Research Laboratory, Department of Biophysics and Biochemistry, University of Tokyo, Japan



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Doctoral degree (Dr. rer. nat, Ph.D. equivalent) in Biology (2011-2016)

Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, Germany

Master of Science in Biology (2009-2011)

University of Tokyo Graduate School, Tokyo, Japan

Bachelor of Science (2005-2009)

University of Tokyo, Department of Biophysics and Biochemistry (Major)

Undergraduate Program for Bioinformatics and Systems Biology (Minor)


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Research summary

Circular RNA is a novel regulator of virus infection. They are abundant RNA species in human cells and interact with other RNAs and proteins to regulate cellular physiology. The Tagawa lab aims to define functions and mechanisms of non-coding RNAs in virus-host interactions. We are among the first to identify virus infection-induced circular RNAs and to discover herpesvirus-encoded circular RNAs. Using tumour-associated human herpesviruses including Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), Kaposi sarcoma herpesvirus (KSHV), we found a human circular RNA, circRELL1, that can suppress viral lytic cycle, a process that produces new virions and spread infection. Still, circRELL1 is one of many host circular RNAs that are commonly induced by multiple herpesviruses and we also discovered virus-encoded circular RNAs of unknown functions.


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