Research Groups

Department of Clinical Medicine / Surgery

Surgery and Oncology

Professor: Masashi Nakamura     

Research Interests

Research on solid cancers – Clinical to Basic, then to Clinical Application-
Development of diagnostic procedures and novel therapies for solid cancers improved the prognosis of patients with cancers. However, the outcome of some types of solid cancers is still dismal, and many issues remain to be solved. We are proceeding with basic and clinical researches on solid cancers, especially focusing on pancreatic cancer, through three steps as follows.
Step-1. Research based on clinical samples
We are trying to identify candidate molecules or specific cells (i.e., cancer stem cells), which can be a target of novel diagnostics and therapeutics using resected specimens of various neoplasms. We usually evaluate RNA, DNA, protein, microRNA, metabolites genetic mutation derived from tissues and isolated cells by immunohistochemistry, real-time PCR, western blotting, laser microdissection, FACS based on cell sorting and NGS.
Step-2. Research based on cultured cells and experimental animals
We analyze the biological functions of target molecules identified in Step-1 using cultured cells and experimental mice. We usually evaluate the ability of proliferation, migration, invasion, metastasis and resistance to anticancer drugs in in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, we evaluate cancer-stromal interactions and microenvironment of pancreatic cancer (niche) using isolated stromal cells.
Step-3. Clinical application
Using candidate molecules and specific cells identified in Step-2, we develop novel diagnostic procedures such as molecular imaging systems on MRI, and create drug delivery systems, by which we can deliver anticancer agents effectively only to target cells. Research for tumor grading and the prediction of chemotherapeutic efficacy for various cancers with bioinformatics analysis. We are aiming to develop new therapeutic methods by approaching to the tumor microenvironment (TME) using single-cell analysis and the association of TME with microbiome at the genomic level. A new screening platform that detects new anti-tumor compounds were developed and now we are investigating a new anti-tumor drug.
Contents of Teaching/ Research Themes
We are performing basic researches using clinical samples and clinicopathological data, aiming at development of novel diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. Applicants can select a subject of your interest and proceed your research with our support.

Research Interests

Research on Pancreas and/or Kidney Transplantation
(Clinical research, large-animal experiments for transplants) In recent years, the outcome of pancreas and/or kidney transplantations have significantly improved because of the progress in surgical techniques, postoperative management, novel immunosuppressive agents, etc. However, patient and graft survival are not satisfactory yet. Our department keeps a large number of clinical pancreas/kidney transplant experiences. Furthermore, we are doing large-animal experiments using pigs. Results of large-animal experiments are supposed to be closer situation of human and the surgical techniques can be applied to clinical transplantation. Basic and clinical studies of cardiovascular surgery.
  1. Clinical Research: (To improve results of kidney transplantation and overcome difficult cases) We are challenging small child kidney transplants and difficult cases such as cross-match positive or donor specific antibody-positive patients. Short term results are very good. Recent progress includes measurement of antibodies by highly sensitive flow cytometry, quick diagnosis of kidney biopsy and staining of SV40-Ag for BKV nephropathy. Postoperative management of renal transplant patients greatly affects the clinical outcome.
  2. Large-animal experiments: Based on the results of previous large-animal experiments to establish an ischemia-reperfusion injury model, we have changed the protocol of our perioperative managements. Contents of Teaching/ Research Themes Clinical problems are found in pancreas and/or kidney transplant, and solved by basic research and animal experiments. Junior doctors receive education in basic science and in surgical training. As a part of large animal experiments, junior doctors experience both organs harvesting and transplantation.

Contents of Teaching/ Research Themes

Clinical problems are found in pancreas and/or kidney transplant, and solved by basic research and animal experiments.

Junior doctors receive education in basic science and in surgical training. As a part of large animal experiments, junior doctors experience both organs harvesting and transplantation.

Surgery and Science

Professor: Tomoharu Yoshizumi    /  

Research Interests

We continually conduct innovative research in the fields of gastrointestinal Surgery, hepato-biliary surgery, general thoracic surgery, vascular Surgery, breast Surgery, transplantation surgery and portal hypertensive surgery.

The details of such research are as follows:

  1. Establishment of new surgical devices for laparoscopic surgery using artificial intelligence
  2. Development new annotation device for tele-surgery
  3. Establishment of new molecular targeting therapy and treatment based on the genomic analysis
  4. Development of novel treatment for peritoneal metastasis
  5. Development of new gene therapy and immune therapy
  6. Molecular biological research regarding the immune system of infection, transplantation and tumor development

Contents of Teaching/Research Themes

  1. Gastrointestinal Precision onco-surgery using liquid biopsy, and development new surgical device for tele-surgery
  2. Hepato-biliary・Transplantation・Portal Hypertensive Surgery: Molecular analyses and development of new treatments for hepato-biliary cancer Making artificial liver using iPS cells The impact on the hepatic microenvironment caused by stellate cells and hepatic sinusoid
  3. General Thoracic Surgery: Multidisciplinary research to improve outcomes in thoracic malignancies
  4. Vascular Surgery: Gene analyses of aneurysms, and the development of regenerative therapy for vascular disease
  5. Breast Surgery: The establishment of new molecular targeting therapy and treatment based on the analysis of cancer related genes

Cardiovascular Surgery

Professor: Akira Shiose   /  

Research Interests

Basic and clinical studies of cardiovascular surgery.
  1. Heart transplantation from donors with circulatory death
  2. Cardiac surgery-associated acute kidney injury
  3. Prevention of paraplegia during aortic surgery
  4. Physiology of myocardium and endothelial cell in reperfusion injury.
  5. Artificial heart and circulatory assist system.
  6. Heart preservation strategy in transplantation.
  7. Influence of stent therapy in cardiac function.
  8. Analysis of cardiac function in open heart surgery

Contents of Teaching/Research Themes

Followed as themes mentioned above.



Professor and chairman: Masatoshi Eto     /  

Research Interests

Urology is the medical and surgical specialty focusing on urinary tract, and male reproductive system. We focused on tumor immunology from basic to clinical research. Also, we are engaged in research on genetic abnormalities in urological cancer, investigating biological and clinical relevance of genetic and genomic abnormality by a genome-wide association study, next-generation sequencing and liquid biopsy. Furthermore, we are working on clinical applications such as development of navigation technology for robot-assisted surgery

using da Vinci and utilization of artificial intelligence in endoscopic diagnosis.

Finally, we investigate the mechanisms controlling lower urinary tract function and aim to develop novel treatment drugs based on their mechanisms.


Contents of Teaching/Research Themes

Basic and clinical studies of cardiovascular surgery.
  1. Tumor immunology in genitourinary cancer
  2. Genetic and genomic abnormalities in genitourinary cancer
  3. Development of new technology by medical-engineering
  4. Research for the underlying mechanisms of lower urinary tract function and for the development of novel treatment drugs based on their mechanisms

Orthopaedic Surgery

Professor : Yasuharu Nakashima     / 

Research Interests: Contents of Teaching/ Research Themes

(Hip joint)
  1. Prevention of the steroid-induced osteonecrosis of the femoral head
  2. Morphological analysis of the hip joint
  3. Quantitative assessment of the joint cartilage using arthroscopy
  4. Pathology and treatments of osteolysis
  5. Radiographic wear analysis of polyethylene liner
  6. Analysis of the joint stress distribution using finite element model
(Biomechanics in the knee)
  1. Motion analysis of total knee arthroplasty
  2. Contact stress analysis of total knee arthroplasty
  3. Research on the osteotomy around the knee
  4. Cartilage regeneration and implantation

(Bone and soft tissue tumor)
  1. Limb salvation and prognostic improvement in the malignant bone and soft tissue tumor
  2. Inhibition of metastasis/invasion of the malignant bone and soft tissue tumor
  3. Oncogenesis of Ewing’s sarcoma and development of gene therapy
  4. Regulation of bone metastasis in cancer
  5. Oncogenesis of chondrosarcoma
  6. Regulatory mechanisms of the chemosensitivity in malignant bone and soft tissue tumors

(Basic science in bone and joint)
  1. Elucidation of new target for osteoporosis treatment by regulating osteoclastogenesis
  2. Role of osteocyte in osteolytic diseases
  3. Analysis of the molecular mechanisms of synovitis in rheumatoid arthritis
  4. Analysis of the mechanism of T-cell activation in rheumatoid arthritis
  5. Transcriptional regulation of chondrogenic differentiation
  6. Pathological clarifications of cartilage degeneration in osteoarthritis
  7. Finding and analysis of novel factors involved in the mechanisms of chondrocyte differentiation
  8. Elucidation in crosstalk between osteoarthritis and diseases in other organs
  9. Spinal cord injury and spinal regeneration


Professor: Koji Yoshimoto     /  

Research Interests

Detailed pathogenesis and pathophysiology of neurosurgical diseases, e.g. malignant brain tumors, vasospasm after subarachnoid hemorrhage, and intractable epilepsy, are yet to be elucidated. Our department aims to clarify these subjects and to develop novel treatment strategies through pharmacological, molecular biological, electrophysiological, and pathomorphological approaches.

Contents of Teaching/Research Themes

  1. Development of innovative diagnostic method and therapeutic strategy of malignant brain tumors based on molecular pathology and molecular biomarkers
  2. Development of liquid biopsy for brain tumors
  3. Elucidation of molecular mechanism of cerebral vasospasm
  4. Elucidation of molecular mechanism and development of a novel therapeutic modality of cerebral aneurysm
  5. Elucidation of epigenetic regulation of carotid artery stenosis
  6. Development of a novel nanoparticle therapy for cerebral infarction
  7. Development of electrophysiological methods for evaluation of intraoperative neuronal functions and elucidation the pathogenesis of intractable epilepsy.


Professor : Koh-Hei Sonoda     /  

Our Research Interests

More than 80% of all information from external environment is transformed as visual images in the eye and received by the human brain.

The main characteristics of eye are the tissue transparency through the cornea and lens upon the retina, and the part of central nervous system function to transmit information to brain, both of which have extremely precise mechanism and have sophisticated immune system as well.

There are several kind of refractive eye disorders which can critically threaten visual function; ocular vascular diseases such as diabetic retinopathy, age-related macular degeneration and retinopathy of prematurity; genetic hereditary diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa and corneal dystrophy; ocular inflammatory diseases such as uveitis and keratitis; and other important refractory diseases such as glaucoma and intra/extra-ocular tumor.

Our aims are to clarify the pathophysiological mechanism of these diseases and to develop a novel treatment using molecular, biological, immunological, pathological, regenerative medicine, artificial intelligence techniques, robotics, next-generation sequencing, bioinformatics, and ophthalmic epidemiology in Hisayama town.

Teaching/Research Themes

  1. Analysis of cytokine expression and signal transduction using in vitro/in vivo systems
  2. Comprehensive genomic approach for ocular diseases including inherited retinal diseases, tumors, and complex diseases
  3. Direct reprograming of retinal nerve cells
  4. Development of diagnostic systems using artificial intelligence and robotic eye surgery
  5. Ophthalmic epidemiology in Hisayama town


Professor: Takashi Nakagawa 

Research Interests

The field of otorhinolaryngology/ head and neck surgery deals with diseases that are deeply related to the human’s quality of life, particularly to the sense of hearing, smell, taste balance, swallowing and vocal function. Our research interest reaches out to multiple fields of science that relates to neuro-otology, rhinology, head and neck surgery and plastic surgery.

The goal of our research is not only to clarify the mechanisms of individual organ’s function or pathogenesis from the basic science’s point of view, but also to apply our findings to improve our clinical treatment.

Contents of teaching/ research themes

  1. The analysis of the auditory system in cochlea (including cochlear implant).
  2. The development of image-guidance system for the temporal bone surgery.
  3. The analysis of neural networks in brain stem, swallowing and laryngeal motion.
  4. The development of molecular target in head and neck cancer.
  5. The development of immuno-therapy in allergic rhinitis.


Professor: Takeshi Nakahara    /

Research Interests

Our current research projects include skin allergy, immunodermatology, tumor immunology, infectious immunity, wound healing, and dioxin and human health. Our recent research interests are heading towards itch and cutaneous allergic inflammation, skin tumor invasion and stroma, chemical sensing and its consequences in keratinocytes. As for dioxin research, we are exploring effects of aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) on oxidative stress and keratinocyte differentiation. Our final goal in AHR investigation is how to cancel toxic response by dioxins. Prof. Furue is now in charge of dioxin research groups supported by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, Japan.

Contents of Teaching/Research Themes

  1. Mechanism of itch sensation in allergic inflammation
  2. Epidemiological analysis of atopic dermatitis
  3. Skin tumor invasion and stroma; prognostic markers for melanoma
  4. Mechanism of dermal fibrosis and collagenolysis
  5. Regulation of oxidative stress and keratinocyte differentiation by aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR)
  6. AHR and anti-ageing
  7. Chemo-cytokine production from keratinocytes

Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine

Professor : Ken Yamaura     /  

Research Interests

Whole body management during anesthesia focused on circulatory and respiratory control, and pain management for acute, chronic and cancer pain.

Contents of Teaching/ Research Themes

  1. Circulatory control during anesthesia.
  2. Mechanisms and management for acute and chronic pain.
  3. Mechanisms and management for cancer pain.
  4. Improvement of safety during perioperative medicine.
  5. Anesthetic management for organ transplantation.
  6. Mechanisms for acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease related to perioperative medicine.
  7. Mechanisms for learning and memory impairment caused by exposure to anesthetics during development.
  8. Mechanisms for sepsis and blood coagulation according to sepsis.
  9. Mechanisms for disseminated intravascular coagulation syndrome.