生命の堅牢性と可塑性
Robustness and Plasticity of Life

生命の堅牢性と可塑性
Robustness and Plasticity of Life
iPS細胞は、たった一つの細胞から個体を再生することを可能にした偉大なる発見です。この発見によって、生命の二面性があらためて浮き彫りになりました。ゲノムが、すべての情報を世代を越えて伝えるという非常に堅牢な側面。一方で、その情報が多様な細胞を生み出す可塑的な側面も持っています。堅牢性と可塑性、この二面性こそが、40億年という長い間、生命の連鎖が一度も途切れずに脈々と続いてきた理由です。 本講義では、ゲノムから生命活動にいたる情報の制御を軸に、個体の発生、細胞内タンパク質の入れ替え、iPS細胞を用いた再生医療の可能性、生体に備わる時計、脳神経の活動の解析を通して、堅牢性と可塑性という一見矛盾する性質を内包した生命の営みについて、考えてみたいと思います。 The creation of induced pluripotent stem cells, or iPS cells, which make it theoretically possible to generate individuals from single cells, is a great discovery. This reminds us of the dual nature of life. One is the robustness of life in passing on all of its information to following generations through genome. The other is the plasticity of life that allows its information to create a wide variety of cells. This dual nature – robustness and plasticity – is the reason why the chain of life has continued ceaselessly over the past 4 billion years. This course of lectures will discuss the biological activities that comprise the apparent contradiction of life’s dual nature of robustness and plasticity. Such discussions will be made through analyzing ontogeny, intracellular protein replacement, the potential of iPS cell-based regenerative medicine, biological clocks, and the activity of cranial nerves. We will analyze these issues, putting emphasis on information control covering genome to biological activities.