||Neuroscience Seminar Series
After training as a medical doctor, Dr. Tomoyuki Takahashi received his Ph. D. degree in Pharmacology from Tokyo Medical & Dental University in 1975 for his pioneering works on substance P as a neurotransmitter in cat spinal cord. In post-doctoral training, he worked with Dr. Ricardo Miledi at the Biophysics Department, University College London,being supervised by Sir Bernard Katz. Since then, this Nobel laureate became his mentor for life. After returning to Japan, he collaborated with Dr. Shosaku Numa's group at Kyoto University as a lecturer in Dr. Motoy Kuno's laboratory, and contributed to the establishment of the new field, Molecular Neuroscience. After he moved to the University of Tokyo as a professor, he collaborated with Dr. Ian Forsythe to develop a preparation in which one can make patch-clamp recordings from presynaptic and postsynaptic structures simultaneously (Takahashi et al. 1996). This preparation, the calyx of Held synapse in rodents, is now recognized as a gold model of mammalian central synapse, after frog neuromuscular junction and squid giant synapse. Using the calyx of Held synapse, Dr. Takahashi's group unveiled presynaptic mechanisms regulating transmitter release which had never been proved directly. As a leading scientist, Dr. Takahashi named on the editorial board of international journals, such as Science and The Journal of Physiology. After his retirement from the University of Tokyo in 2007, his enthusiasm for science has enabled him to have two laboratories in Okinawa (OIST) and Kyoto (Doshisha University). To date, Dr. Takahashi single- or co-authored more than 100 research articles in scientific journals.