Proceedings of the Japan Academy, Series B
Online ISSN : 1349-2896
Print ISSN : 0386-2208
ISSN-L : 0386-2208
Volume 85, Issue 2
Displaying 1-3 of 3 articles from this issue
  • Shun-ichi IWASAKI
    2009 Volume 85 Issue 2 Pages 37-54
    Published: February 28, 2009
    Released on J-STAGE: February 12, 2009
    The principle of conventional magnetic recording is that magnetic fields are applied parallel to the plane of the magnetic medium. As described in this paper, the invention and development of a new method of placing the magnetized information perpendicular to the plane of the magnetic recording medium is presented. The yield in the mass production of high-density hard disk drives (HDDs) for perpendicular recording is much higher than that of HDDs for conventional recording. Consequently, it is estimated that as many as 75% of the 500 million HDDs to be shipped this year will use this technology.

    (Contributed by Shun-ichi IWASAKI, M.J.A.)
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  • Yusuke KAMACHI, Makiko IWAFUCHI, Yuichi OKUDA, Tatsuya TAKEMOTO, Masan ...
    2009 Volume 85 Issue 2 Pages 55-68
    Published: February 28, 2009
    Released on J-STAGE: February 12, 2009
    In higher vertebrates, the expression of Sox2, a group B1 Sox gene, is the hallmark of neural primordial cell state during the developmental processes from embryo to adult. Sox2 is regulated by the combined action of many enhancers with distinct spatio-temporal specificities. DNA sequences for these enhancers are conserved in a wide range of vertebrate species, corresponding to a majority of highly conserved non-coding sequences surrounding the Sox2 gene, corroborating the notion that the conservation of non-coding sequences mirrors their functional importance. Among the Sox2 enhancers, N-1 and N-2 are activated the earliest in embryogenesis and regulate Sox2 in posterior and anterior neural plates, respectively. These enhancers differ in their evolutionary history: the sequence and activity of enhancer N-2 is conserved in all vertebrate species, while enhancer N-1 is fully conserved only in amniotes. In teleost embryos, Sox19a/b play the major pan-neural role among the group B1 Sox paralogues, while strong Sox2 expression is limited to the anterior neural plate, reflecting the absence of posterior CNS-dedicated enhancers, including N-1. In Xenopus, neurally expressed SoxD is the orthologue of Sox19, but Sox3 appears to dominate other B1 paralogues. In amniotes, however, Sox19 has lost its group B1 Sox function and transforms into group G Sox15 (neofunctionalization), and Sox2 assumes the dominant position by gaining enhancer N-1 and other enhancers for posterior CNS. Thus, the gain and loss of specific enhancer elements during the evolutionary process reflects the change in functional assignment of particular paralogous genes, while overall regulatory functions attributed to the gene family are maintained.

    (Communicated by Takao SEKIYA, M.J.A.)
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    2009 Volume 85 Issue 2 Pages 69-82
    Published: February 28, 2009
    Released on J-STAGE: February 12, 2009
    This review addresses the distribution of genetic markers of immunoglobulin G (Gm) among 130 Mongoloid populations in the world. These markers allowed the populations to be clearly divided into 2 groups, the northern and southern groups. The northern group is characterized by high frequencies of 2 marker genes, ag and ab3st, and an extremely low frequency of the marker gene afb1b3; and the southern group, in contrast, is indicated by a remarkably high frequency of afb1b3 and low frequencies of ag and ab3st. Based on the geographical distribution of the markers and gene flow of Gm ag and ab3st (northern Mongoloid marker genes) from northeast Asia to the Japanese archipelago, the Japanese population belongs basically to the northern Mongoloid group and is thus suggested to have originated in northeast Asia, most likely in the Baikal area of Siberia.

    (Communicated by Osamu HAYAISHI, M.J.A.)
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