Progress in modern biology has seen accumulation of vast knowledge regarding the molecular interactions that underpin living systems. From vast sequencing and proteomics data to fluorescence microscopy images, the field enjoys abundance of quantitative data, inevitably placing the discipline much closer to physics, chemistry and mathematics than ever before. Exciting challenges lie ahead as we are still only beginning to get a glimpse of the answer to the fundamental questions of what constitutes living systems, what the common rules and principles that govern them are. These endeavors often involve employing mathematics and quantitative thinking to link experimental and computational data to idea and theoretical concepts.
The Research Center for Complex Systems Biology was established in 2004
after the success of the Center of Excellence (COE) Grant “Analysis of Living Systems as Complex Systems” (1999-2004) from the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports (MEXT). The center aims to foster research and collaboration between like-minded scientists in the greater Komaba campus community that take a multidisciplinary and integrative approach at the interfaces of physics, mathematics, chemistry and biology. From 2011 to 2016, the center was funded by MEXT-AMED for a 5-years project aimed at establishing research and education platforms for research in biological dynamics. Since late 2016, the center and the Universal Biology Institute (UBI) at the Hongo campus formed an inter-campus collaborative framework to foster education and research at the interfaces of physics, mathematics, chemistry and biology. The center operates a small open-lab space, facilities for cell sorter, microfabrication and imaging at Komaba Campus I. Every year, we welcome a dozen or so highly motivated freshman and sophomore students for hands-on lab experience, computational and theoretical training as a part of a campus-wide training seminar.
- MEXT COE Analysis of Living Systems as Complex Systems 1999-2003
- MEXT 21st Century COE Yugokagaku Station 2003-2007
- MEXT, AMED Research and Education Platform for Complex Living Systems Dynamics (2012-2016)
- Univ. Tokyo, Universal Biology Institute (2017- present)