Division of Soft Matter

In April 2018, Hokkaido University, which owns the world’s top level reserach for soft matter, will establish Division of Soft Matter (Master’s course, Doctor’s course) in the Graduate School of Life Science.  Our new division will provide systematic education specializing in soft matter science and nurture students who will lead researches and developement of soft matter all over the world.

This is a tentative introduction of Division of Soft Matter.
The official home page will be uploaded on URL: http://www.lfsci.hokudai.ac.jp


What is Soft Matter?

Curriculum of the Divison

Entrance Examination Information

Faculty member


What is Soft Matter?

Soft matter is a general term of soft substances such as polymers, gels, biological materials, etc. Soft Matter have many interesting behaviors and functions that the hard matter, such as metals and ceramics, does not have. Interesting behaviors arise from soft matter in ways that cannot be predicted, or are difficult to predict, directly from its atomic or molecular constituents. This is often because soft matter self-organizes into mesoscopic structures that are much larger than the microscopic scale, and yet are much smaller than the macroscopic scale of the substance. The properties and interactions of these mesoscopic structures may determine the macroscopic behavior of the subsance.

Soft matter is getting great attention as growing field in 21st century where there is possibility of invention of brand new soft matter materials for various applications, from artificial tissues in biomedical field to super tough rubbers in industry.



Curriculum of the Division


Our main objective is to educate and foster the development of students with multi-disciplinary views beyond the conventional boundaries of sciences, technology, and engineering. Our students is supervised by faculty members from Faculty of Advanced Life Science, Faculty of Medicine, Research Institute for Electrionic Science, National Institute for Materials Science. In addition, the international members of Global Station of Soft Matter/Global Institution for Collaborative Research and Education (GSS/GI-CoRE) also participate the education. We promote “Hokkaido University Cotutelle Program” with oversea universities in cooperation at doctoral course. Lectrues and daily discussions are conducted in English.  “Soft Matter Open Unit (SMOU)” providing front-line research equipments specializing in soft matter analysis are available to support soft matter studies. Detailed information on supervisors can be found at Faculty Information.



Entrance Exam Information

Admission Quota

Entrance examination of 2018 fiscal year will be held twice at Fall Special Selection (1st time) and at Second Selection (2nd time). More details can be found here.


Fall Special Selection (Admission in April 2018, Master’s Course / Doctoral Course)

Admission Guidance Fair: August 25, 2017 (at Sapporo)

Application Documents and Online Application Registration (only for Special Selection of international students) Period: September 27, 2017 – October 2, 2017

Date of Examination: October 24, 25, 2017

Announcement of Application Result: November 7, 2017


Second Selection (Admission in April 2018, Master’s Course / Doctoral Course)

Admission Guidance Fair (Gradual School of Life Science): November 11, 2017 (at Tokyo)

Online Application Registration Period (only for Special Selection of international students) : November 30, 2017 – December 6, 2017 (tentative)

Application Documents Period:December 11−15, 2017 (tentative)

Date of Examination: January 17, 18, 2018 (tentative)

Announcement of Application Result: January 25, 2018 (tentative)


Faculty Member

You can access the website of the laboratory by clicking each faculty’s names.

Jian Ping Gong (Professor)

Research Area: Soft Matter, Polymer Gels, Tough Soft Materials, Fracture, Lubrication, Friction, Adhesion, Biomaterials, Artificial Cartilage, Cell Scaffold, Regenerative Medicine

Makoto Demura (Professor)

Research Area: Biomimicry, Biophysics, NMR, Membrane Protein, Active Matter


Hisashi Haga (Professor)Research Area: Cell Biology, Tumor Biology



Toshiyuki Nakagaki (Professor)

Research Area: Physical Ethology, Mathematical Modeling, Biomechanics, Cell Behavior, Bioinformatics, Protist, Cell population

Kuniharu Ijiro (Professor)

Research Area: DNA Nanoarchitectures, Self-assembly, Bottom-up Nanofabrication

Takayuki Kurokawa (Professor)

Research Area: Hydrogel, Gel Interface


Tomoyasu Aizawa (Associate Professor)

Research Area: Protein Science, Structural Biology, Metabolomics, Recombinant Protein, NMR, Protein Folding, Innate Immunity, Antimicrobial Peptide, Cytokine, pathogenic microorganism, noncollagenous protein

Katsuhiko Sato (Associate Professor)

Research Area: Rheology of Complex Fluids, Collective Migration, Beating of Cilia, Auto-oscillation in Muscle



Masumi Tsuda (Associate Professor)

Research Area: Cancer, Stemness, Signal Transduction



Hideyuki Mimoto (Associate Professor)

Research Area: Soft Matter, Metal Nanoparticles, Assemblies, Plasmonics


Takashi Kikukawa (Lecturer)

Research Area: Photobiology, Membrane Protein, Rhodopsin, Membrane Transport, Rhodopsin, Transient Absorption Spectroscopy


Tomohiro Onodera (Lecturer)

Research Area: Regenerative Medicine, Scaffold Material, Cartilage Metabolism

Daniel R. King (Assistant Professor)

Research Area: Biomaterials, Tough Hydrogels, Hydrogel Composites, Adhesion, Fracture

Kazuya Furusawa (Assistant Professor)

Research Area: Polymer Physics, Biomaterial Science, Tissue Engineering

Takashi Tsukamoto (Assistant Professor)

Research Area: Biophysics of Photoreceptor Protein


Shigeru Kuroda (Assistant Professor)

Research Area: Biological information processing, Biological locomotion, Nonlinear dynamical systems, Experimental mathematical biiology, Ethology, Unicellular/Multicelluar organism, Brain, Nervous systesms, Evolution, History/Coding/Memory, Image Processing,Time series analysis

Tasuku Nakajima (Assistant Professor)

Research Area: Gels Material Physics, Creation of Tough Gels, Lyotropic Liquid Crystalline Gels



Takayuki Nonoyama (Assistant Professor)


Research Area: Hydrogels, Biomineralization, Soft Ceramics, Organic/Inorganic Hybrid Materials, Osteointegration, Hydroxyapatite, Biomaterials, Bioceramics, Polypeptides, Molecular Self-Assembly

Seiichiro Ishihara (Assistant Professor)

Research Area: Cell Biology, Tumor Biology, Mechanobiology



If you have any questions, please contact here.