Cell Fate Dynamics and TherapeuticsMedicine and Medical Science

Professor Takahiro Ito

Our lab has broad interests in the regulation of cell fates in stem cells and cancer. We study (1) how stem cell fates are determined and regulated in healthy tissues and organs and (2) how the regulatory mechanisms for cell fate decision go awry and drive cancer development and progression. Our recent obsessions include metabolic regulation of cell fates. We hope our findings can contribute to developing safe and effective therapeutic strategies for tissue regeneration, frailty and cancer in human. In the lab, we value communication, diversity and inclusion.

Lab Website

Research and Education

The long-term goal of the research programs in our laboratory is to elucidate the mechanisms and regulation of cell fate decisions in the biology of stem cells and cancer. Stem cells have a remarkable ability to self-renew, but it is a double-edged sword; while self-renewal promotes tissue repair and regeneration, it can also be a target of malignant transformation causing cancer. We study regulatory mechanisms of stem cell behaviors in order to better understand cellular signals regulating tissue homeostasis, regeneration and cancer. In our previous studies, we have developed a productive and innovative research program by incorporating cross-disciplinary approaches such as imaging, metabolomics and NMR spectroscopy on top of molecular cell biology and biochemistry. In essence, we discovered a novel regulatory mechanism via metabolic reprogramming that sustains stem cell states in myeloid leukemia and demonstrated that inhibiting the metabolic pathway can be an effective therapeutic strategy in treating advanced cancer such as acute leukemia. In the lab, we value diversity and inclusion.

(1) Stem cell systems in tissues and cancer.

Recent Publications

  1. Hattori A, Tsunoda M, Konuma T, Kobayashi M, Nagy T, Glushka J, Tayyari F, McSkimming D, Kannan N, Tojo A, Edison A, Ito T. (2017) Cancer progression by reprogrammed BCAA metabolism in myeloid leukemia. Nature 545:500-504.
  2. Hattori A, Buac K, Ito T. (2016) Regulation of stem cell self-renewal and oncogenesis by RNA-binding proteins. Adv Exp Med Biol 907:153-88.
  3. Zimdahl B*, Ito T*, Blevins A, Bajaj J, Konuma T, Weeks J, Koechlein CS, Kwon HY, Arami O, Rizzieri D, Broome HE, Chuah C, Oehler VG, Sasik R, Hardiman G, Reya T. (2014) Lis1 regulates asymmetric division in hematopoietic stem cells and in leukemia. Nat Genet 46:245-52.
  4. Ito T, Zimdahl B, Reya T. (2012) aSIRTing control over cancer stem cells. Cancer Cell 21:140-2.
  5. Ito T, Kwon HY, Zimdahl B, Congdon KL, Blum J, Lento WE, Zhao C, Lagoo A, Gerrard G, Foroni L, Goldman J, Goh H, Kim SH, Kim DW, Chuah C, Oehler VG, Radich JP, Jordan CT, Reya T. (2010) Regulation of myeloid leukaemia by the cell fate determinant Musashi. Nature 466:765-8.


Professor: Takahiro Ito
Associate Professor: Ayuna Hattori
Assistant Professor: Kenkyo Matsuura
Assistant Professor: Sayumi Okigawa

e-mail: itolab(at)infront.kyoto-u.ac.jp

URL: https://cellfate.infront.kyoto-u.ac.jp/

  1. Home
  2. Research
  3. Research Fields