In eukaryotic cells, many subcellular organelles are compartmentalized by the lipid bilayer and these organelles dynamically communicate each other to maintain their identity and to carry out their specific functions which are important for cellular homeostasis. The materials flow between organelles forms a complicated network which is well-organized by membrane trafficking machinery (see figure). Because the membrane trafficking is required for many biological activities in multicellular organisms such as phagocytosis, neurotransmitter release, secretion of secretory proteins (e.g. insulin), cell migration, cell division and so on, defects in the machinery accompany various dysfunction of an organism.
The interest of our group is the molecular mechanisms of membrane trafficking, an essential function of all eukaryotic cells. Our long term goal is how these membrane traffic processes contributes to development of tissues and organs and to other higher-order physiological functions of multicellular organisms. Our currernt interest is to understand interplay of lipids and proteins in membrane dynamics. Keywords of our current work are P4-ATPases (flippase which regulates lipid asymmetry between lipid bilayers) and small GTPases.





                                                                                         Takatsu et al., (2014) J. Biol. Chem. 289, 33543



                                                                                                 Takatsu et al., (2017) Nat. Commun. 8, 1423