Faculty of Medicine University of Miyazaki

RI Research

KENMOCHI, Naoya, Ph.D.




Ribosomes, the protein synthesis factories, are essential for every living cell. Mutations in genes involved in the ribosome biogenesis have been identified in patients with a group of diseases called ribosomopathies. These patients mainly display tissue specific anomalies such as bone marrow failure, anemia, and have increased risk of developing cancer. Our major focus is to understand how these ribosome-associated diseases are generated, and what are the key pathways involved in linking the ribosome with cancer, using a zebrafish model system.

Research Projects

We are using zebrafish as a model animal to explore

  1. Ribosomal defects and bone marrow failure
  2. Ribosomal defects and cancer development
  3. RNA modifications in ribosome function
  4. Discovery of new drugs for ribosomopathies
  5. Biological effects of low dose radiation

Lab Techniques

  1. Basic molecular biology: PCR, Northern/Western blotting, DNA cloning/sequencing
  2. Advanced genomics: GeneChip, Next Generation Sequencing, RNA-Seq
  3. Zebrafish experiments: microinjection, phenotype analysis, live imaging, in situ hybridization
  4. Zebrafish genetics: gene knockdown/knockout, transgene, genome editing
  5. Drug screening: in vivo screening, phenotype screening, high throughput screening
  6. Bioinformatics: sequence data analysis, database development

International Collaboration

  1. Children’s Mercy Hospitals and Clinics, University of Missouri, USA
  2. Department of Biology, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy
  3. Nitte University Center for Science Education and Research, India


  1. Ribosomal protein deficiency causes Tp53-independent erythropoiesis failure in zebrafish. Yadav G et al. Int J Biochem Cell Biol 49: 1-7, 2014
  2. snOPY: a small nucleolar RNA orthological gene database. Yoshihama M et al. BMC Research Notes, 6: 426, 2013
  3. Loss of ribosomal RNA modification causes developmental defects in zebrafish. Higa-Nagamine S et al. Nucleic Acids Res. 40: 391-398, 2012
  4. Guarding the ‘translation apparatus’: defective ribosome biogenesis and the p53 signaling pathway. Chakraborty A et al. Wiley Interdiscip Rev RNA, 2: 507-522, 2011
  5. Deficiency of ribosomal protein S19 during early embryogenesis leads to reduction of erythrocytes in a zebrafish model of Diamond-Blackfan anemia. Uechi T et al. Hum Mol Genet. 17: 3204-3211, 2008