Chika, Xiangchun, Svante, Shin-Yu, Limin and Chie (October 2023)

Dr. Xiangchun Ju

Postdoctoral Scholar
Email: xiangchun.ju at

My research interest is human-specific genomic features and their relationship with unique human traits in brain. I’m currently working on mouse models humanized for genes encoding enzymes carrying amino acid changes that are fixed on the modern human lineage. In particular, I use liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry and automated behavioral tracking system (IntelliCage) to explore how the amino acid changes in enzymes shaped human behavior and biology during evolution.


Dr. ShinYu Lee

Postdoctoral Scholar
Email: shinyu.lee at

I received my PhD in biomedical engineering at National Taiwan University in 2019, where I studied multifunctional nanomedicine and cancer therapy. After that, I worked as a training assistant professor at Hiroshima University for one year, exploring the development of muscle-tendon interfaces via in silico, in vitro, and in vivo approaches. I joined OIST in early 2022 and expanded my research interests to muscle development and functions and their implications in human evolution. Currently, I am using various approaches, including metabolomics analysis, behavior tests, whole-mount staining, MRI, etc., to study how human-specific genetic changes in muscle enzymes make us different from our closest evolutionary relatives. 

Chika Azama

Email: azama at

Limin Chen

Email: limin.chen1 at

Chie Narai

Research Unit Administrator
Email: chie.narai at

Visiting reseacher

  • Dr. Hugo Zeberg (Assistant Professor, Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet/Research scientist, Max-Planck-Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology)

Past members

Dmitrii Iliushchencko (From March to August 2023)

Research Intern/Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University, Kaliningrad

Tomoe Shimazaki (From June to November 2022)