Yuko Takagi is a Research Scientist at National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) in Tsukuba, Japan.
Her laboratory experience started in her junior year in Wells College in New York, where she studied avian ocular development as her thesis project. She was awarded Eleanor C. McMullen Biology Prize upon graduation. She continued working in the developmental biology field as a Laboratory Technician at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine.
She later received her Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Buffalo, studying mRNA capping enzymes of Trypanosoma brucei and RNA ligase of Methanobacterium thermoautotrophicum. She is a recipient of the Erwin Neter Award, presented by the Western New York Branch of the American Society for Microbiology. Part of her research work was supported by Predoctoral Fellowship of American Heart Association.
As a Postdoctoral Research Fellow, she worked on dsRNA viruses that infect Trichomonas vaginalis and Giardia duodenalis at Harvard Medical School. In her personal life, she served as an organizer of Boston Japanese Researchers Forum for two years. After coming back to her home country Japan, she was accepted to AIST Innovation School for Postdoctoral Researchers. She then joined a biotech company, DNA Chip Research Inc. in Tokyo, and contributed to establish international business partnerships and research collaborations.
She was recruited to Biomedical Research Institute of AIST as a tenure-track Research Scientist in 2016. She is currently investigating drug targets against Trypanosoma cruzi, the causative agent of Chagas disease.