谷田 純 教授Tanida, Jun

Graduate School of Information Science and Technology
Information Photonics Lab

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When he was a student, Professor Tanida became interested in logic operations using natural light. However, he felt limited by only being able to identify light down to the level of one micrometer, and decided to try and create an information processing device that would work at the molecular level using DNA.

An applied physicist working with biology

My original specialization is applied physics. I studied light-related hardware. I then moved into DNA computing, and this led me back to research on light, and my current interest: photonic DNA computers that are generated by light. As you know, DNA is organized in a double helix structure consisting of combinations of pairs of bases A and T, and C and G. If we prepare a variety of synthetic DNA, some will form pairs and join together. The concept of DNA computing is based on the idea of applying DNA formation to information processing. This is further developed by the inclusion of systems for prioritizing certain processes through the application of light.

Using biological activity as a starting point for product development

I get hints for my research from the way living things operate. I combine these hints with various technologies with the goal of developing new products. The great advantage of DNA computers lies in their deep affinity with the living world. They are also compact and use little energy. They may even be used for medical purposes within the human body. In another of my projects, I was inspired by the compound eyes of insects to create a video capture system called TOMBO which is capable of taking wide-angle, high-definition, 3-D images despite its compact size. It is not long until this system is employed in actual commercial products.


Professor Tanida with his “Photonic DNA Experimental Apparatus,” which enables detailed observation of DNA capsules picked up using photo-tweezers.

The allure of mixing different kinds knowledge and expertise

photo_tanida02I am in charge of student affairs in the HWIP. I look after things like scholarships and support for student life. For me, neither computing nor biology is “home territory.” I think this helps me communicate with students on their own level. I also want to share with students the importance of, and the enjoyment to be gained from, coming into contact with knowledge and techniques beyond your own specialization and exploring things from different perspectives.

Research projects tend to involve people with similar outlooks and values. As they work together on a project, people become even more similar. When experts in fields such as biology, computing, robotics and cognitive science collaborate, their various forms of knowledge and expertise get mixed up together, producing original and exciting findings. I look forward to this kind of mixing in the HWIP.




谷田 純 教授Tanida, Jun

Tanida, Jun

情報科学研究科 情報フォトニクス講座

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私はもともと応用物理の専門家。光に関するハードウェアの研究者です。それがDNAコンピュータの研究に進み、さらに再び光の研究が登場して、「光で生起するフォトニックDNAコンピュータの研究」にたどりつきました。 ご存知のようにDNAは、AとT 、CとGがペアになりこの組み合わせで二重らせん構造ができています。いろいろな合成DNAを用意してやると、うまくペアになるものがあればくっつく。これを情報処理に使おうというのが、DNAコンピュータのアイデアです。さらに、あるところに光を当て、ある処理だけを優先的にさせる仕組みを組み入れています。


私の研究は、生物の活動にヒントあり。それをさまざまな技術と融合させて、新たなものづくりに挑んでいます。 DNAコンピュータのメリットは、生体との親和性が大きいこと。しかも小さくて、省資源。インテリジェントな医療機器として体内で使えるかもしれません。このほか、昆虫の複眼をもとに、小型でも広角で高精細、立体的な画像が撮れるTOMBOという撮像システムを作りました。これはかなり実用化に近づいています。