Institute of BiophysicsInstitute of Biophysics


Matsuda lab is focusing on the elucidation of the mechanism of membrane fusion induced by viral envelope proteins. Since the membrane fusion is the first essential step of the life cycle of enveloped viruses, the understanding of this critical step will lead to the development of effective antiviral agents. We are also utilizing the protein engineering and developed a pair of reporter proteins called dual split proteins (DSPs) to monitor membrane fusion (see the figure).
DSPs are chimeric split protein between GFP and Renilla Luciferase (RL) and they reassociate via GFP domain in cell fusion and regain both GFP and RL activities. DSP has been successfully applied in analysis of the membrane fusion of many viruses including HIV-1, HSV, measles virus, and RSV. We are now trying to apply the DSP system to dengue viruses and coronaviruses.