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Molecular and Cellular Neurosciences

Laboratory of Molecular Synaptic Function

Takeshi Sakaba,Dr.
Takeshi Sakaba, Ph.D.
Synaptic contacts mediate the information transfer between neurons. Since the development of the slice patch clamp technique in the late 1980s, it has been shown that different synaptic connections in mammalian brain show remarkably diverse transmission properties and variable levels of synaptic plasticity, which are possibly adapted to specific tasks of information processing in the brain. The group aims at understanding the mechanisms underlying diversity and plasticity among synapses by applying biophysical techniques such as simultaneous pre- and postsynaptic recordings and live imaging to several model synapses.

Research topics

synaptic plastiicty: Underlying mechanisms and its functional implication in neural circuits

Selected publications

  1. Kawaguchi SY, Sakaba T (2015) Control of inhibitory synaptic outputs by low excitability of axon terminals revealed by direct recording. Neuron 85:1273-1288.
  2. Midorikawa M, Sakaba T (2015) Imaging exocytosis of single synaptic vesicles at a fast CNS presynaptic terminal. Neuron 88:492-498.
  3. Okamoto Y., Lipstein N., Hua Y., Lin KH., Brose N., Sakaba T., Midorikawa M. (2016) Distinct modes of endocytotic presynaptic membrane and protein uptake at the calyx of Held terminal of rats and mice. eLife. 5: e14643.
  4. Midorikawa M, Sakaba T (2017) Kinetics of Releasable Synaptic Vesicles and Their Plastic Changes at Hippocampal Mossy Fiber Synapses. Neuron 96:1033-1040.
  5. Miyano R, Miki T, Sakaba T (2019) Ca-dependence of synaptic vesicle exocytosis and endocytosis at the hippocampal mossy fibre terminal. J Physiol. 597: 4373-4386.
  6. Miki T, Midorikawa M, Sakaba T (2020) Direct imaging of rapid tethering of synaptic vesicles accompanying exocytosis at a fast central synapse. PNAS in press, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2000265117
  7. Fukaya R, Maglione M, Sigrist SJ, Sakaba T (2021) Rapid Ca2+ channel accumulation contributes to cAMP-mediated increase in transmission at hippocampal mossy fiber synapses. PNAS 118 (9) e2016754118
  8. Fukaya R, Hirai H, Sakamoto H, Hashimotodani Y, Hirose K, Sakaba T. (2023) Increased vesicle fusion competence underlies long-term potentiation at hippocampal mossy fiber synapses. Sci Adv. 9(8):eadd3616.


Takeshi Sakaba, Ph.D. (Principal investigator, Professor)
Yuki Hashimotodani, Ph.D. (Research associate professor)


Sakaba Lab


4F Hochikan, 1-3 Tatara Miyakodani, Kyotanabe-shi, Kyoto 610‐0394
Telephone : +81-774-65-6057
E-mail : tsakaba@mail.doshisha.ac.jp