Read about international media coverage of OIST.

COVID-19 Insights from OIST#1 - Understanding the threat

OIST is collaborating with Ryukyu Shimpo for a series of column articles related to COVID-19 on weekly basis. The first story was written by President Peter Gruss.

Article is in Japanese, but please see below the original draft in English.


Understanding the threat

The new coronavirus COVID-19 has inflicted a global health emergency.

There are physical steps we can all take to reduce its spread and protect human lives. But the fightback is also greatly strengthened by society’s understanding of infectious diseases.

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Turning Disability Into Ability

Kaori Serakaki, 43, is a graphic designer at Media Section, the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST). Serakaki designs posters and pamphlets for various events the university hosts. Her sophisticated designs have earned high recognition and are essential to her team. The designer has Asperger’s Syndrome, a developmental disorder characterized by significant difficulties in communication.

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"Look for Something That You Can Really Get Into" (OIST-Shimpo Next Generation Education Project)

As part of the OIST-Shimpo Next Generation Education Projects, OIST and Ryukyu Shimpo cohosted a lecture by Dr. Shinya Yamanaka, a Nobel Laureate in Physiology and Medicine at Ryukyu Shimpo Hall in Naha on March 25th.  OIST has also introduced some of their science for young generations at the exhibition which coincided with the lecture. 

You can read the full article in Japanese from here.

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What Makes a Jellyfish?

Scientists in the OIST Marine Genomics Unit have uncovered some surprising history hidden in the genes of two species of jellyfish. The new study, published on April 16, 2019 in Nature Ecology & Evolution, reports the genomes of two jellyfish species and investigated why some creatures can enter the medusa stage while others remain frozen as polyps.

Media Coverage:

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NHK Broadcast Satoh Unit's Jellyfish Story

NHK's signature morning program "Ohayo Nippon" broadcast OIST's recent study which was published in Nature Ecology & Evolution.

You can learn what makes jellyfish from here:

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Umibudo Genome Decoding, the Center of Attention!

The Marine Genomics Unit  (Prof. Satoh) has decoded the genome of the popular umibudo (seagrapes), providing data that could someday be critical to local farmers. 

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OIST Column: PHD Student Started an Event for Nerds!?

Maggi Brisbin, a PHD Student who studies marine biology at the Mitarai Unit innitiated an event of "nerds", by "nerds" in Okinawa.  Tomomi Okubo from the OIST Media Section contributed the column (available only in Japanese) to the Asahi Shimbun GLOBE+ and introduced why and how she started it.


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Singing Folk Songs - Keep the Okinawa's Dialects Alive

A local newspaper, the Okinawa Times introduced Mr. Takaaki Iwasa, OIST Associate Vice President for the Office of the Chief Operating Officer about his feeling toward "Shimakutuba," Okinawa's dialect. He learned Okinawa's three strings, sanshin and songs which are usually written in the dialect. He says that singing and passing down the folk songs are a good way to keep the dialects alive.


Read the article online.

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Machine Learning Tracks Moving Cells

New software from the Micro/Bio/Nanofluids Unit allows scientists to study the migration of label-free cells at unprecedented resolution. Read More

Scientists Crack Genome of Superfood Seaweed, Ito-Mozuku

The Marine Genomics Unit has unveiled the genome of ito-mozuku, the popular Japanese brown seaweed, providing data that could help farmers better grow the health food. Read More

Small Brains, Big Picture: Study Unveils C. elegans’ Microscopic Mysteries

A joint collaboration between scientists from the Information Processing Biotlogy Unit and the Neurobiology Research Unit discovered how brain cells in the microscopic worm C. elegans send electrical signals. The results from their research on the minuscule animal can serve as a future model for piecing together neuronal processing in other organisms, including humans.

Their work was published in Scientific Reports on March 5, 2019.

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Prof. Kono Helps Uncover How Cells Split Smoothly

Prof. Kono and her colleagues have uncovered how one protein keeps conditions ‘just right’ so that cells can easily divide into two identical daughter cells. Read More

<Column> OIST Science Talk Season 2 : No. 6 - Dr. Tsumoru Shintake

OIST Communication and Public Relations Division hold  "OIST Scientists Talk on Clothing, Food and Housing" at Junku-do Bookstore Naha from 6:30pm - 7:30 pm every second Friday of the month. 

Before the each event, OIST Communications staff introduces the speaker.  This time, Tomomi Okubo, The Media Section staff wrote about Dr. Tsumoru Shintake and introduced about his project on wave power generator.

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Contributed Article on Citizen Science and Fire Ant Countermeasure

Dr. Masashi Yoshimura, the coordinator of the OKEON Churamori Project contributed an article to the journal "Seibutsu no kagaku Iden” and it is published on Vol.73 No.2 in 2019.

Chapter 3. Citizen Science and RIFA Countermeasure
By Masashi Yoshimura (Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology)

You can read the article from here (In Japanese only)


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Mouse Model of Parkinson's in the News

The Brain Mechanism for Behaviour Unit pinpointed how brain activity changes in mouse models of Parkinson’s disease, hinting at what may drive symptoms in humans. Read More

Target for Cancer Therapy Demystified in Yeast Experiments

The G0 Cell Unit revealed the mechanism driving an important enzyme for tumor cell proliferation, hinting at methods to undermine it. Read More

Fasting Study Makes Headlines

A new study by the G0 Cell Unit uncovers previously unknown effects of fasting, including notably increased metabolic activity and possible anti-aging effects. Read More

Improved Perovskite Solar Cells in the News

The Energy Materials and Surface Sciences Unit has made modifications to Perovskite Solar Cells render them more stable and scalable than ever before. Read More

SCORE! Event - TV Report

SCORE!, a start-up contest for local high school students jointly hosted by OIST was featured in QAB's evening news:  

QABプラスリポート 理系女子「リケジョ」が奮闘


You can read the event report from our website: Okinawa’s Future is Bright! Start-up Contest by Local High School Students 


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Arrow Worm Study Reveals Evolutionary Trends

The phylogenetic position of chaetognaths, or arrow worms, stumped scientists for centuries; now, researchers have revealed important evolutionary trends by pinpointing their proper place. Read More

Paper by Mathematics, Mechanics, and Materials Unit Downloaded Most

A research paper by Prof. Eliot Fried's Mathematics, Mechanics, and Materials Unit was the most downloaded article of the in the Journal of Nonlinear Science during 2018. Congratulations Prof. Fried and his team!

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