Qualifications & Appointments
BSc, Univ. Ehime, Japan, 1990
PhD, Univ. Reading, 1994.
Investigation on the chemistry of the metabolic products of fungi and plants
Work is discovery-oriented – screening, isolation and biological evaluation of bioactive metabolites of fungal and plant origin, and identification of their potential use for human benefit. Efforts are made to utilise the living fungal collections, as well as those from targeted ecological groups (for example endophytes, mycorrhizae and lichens) of mainly British fungi. Duties include the co-ordination of all the stages involved, from maintaining and growing of fungal strains, optimisation of the growth conditions for maximum metabolite production, detection and isolation of compounds, and their evaluation. High priority strains were selected from a preceding period of screening (2001-2005), and up to 89 metabolites have been isolated within the following 2 years. Work continues on building-up of a chemical inventory originating from the living fungal collections at Kew and the British native flora. The work is also aimed at assisting classification of difficult groups of organisms, such as lichens, for which chemical data are an integral part of classification. These activities also involve recording of the specimen and strain information, tracking live cultures, and metabolites; consequently, I am responsible for management of a suite of databases that hold these data. I am also responsible for running and maintaining laboratory equipment, including the freeze-driers.
Selected Recent Publications
Taskova, R.M., Kokubun, T., Ryan, K.G., Garnock-Jones, P. & Jensen, S.R. (2011). Iridoid and phenylethanoid glucosides from Veronica lavaudiana. Journal of Natural Products 74: 1477-1483.
Snell, K.R.S., Kokubun, T., Griffiths, H., Convey, P., Hodgson, D.A., & Newsham, K.K. (2009). Quantifying the metabolic cost to an Antarctic liverwort of responding to an abrupt increase in UVB radiation exposure. Global Change Biology 15: 2563-2573.
- Aguirre-Hudson, B., Kokubun, T., Spooner, B.M. & Tibell, L. (2007). Taxonomy of Calicium victorianum (F. Wilson) Tibell (Caliciaceae, Lecanorales), a lichenized ascomycete new to Europe. Lichenologist 39: 401–407.
- Kokubun, T., Rozwadowski, Z. & Duddeck, H. (2007). Benzaldehyde derivatives from Sarcodontia crocea. Journal of Natural Products 70 (9): 1539-1541.
- Kokubun, T., Shiu, W.K.P. & Gibbons, S. (2007). Inhibitory activities of lichen-derived compounds against methicillin- and multidrug-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Planta Medica 73 (2): 176-179.
Selected Earlier Publications
- Xie, C., Kokubun, T., Houghton, P.J. & Simmonds, M.S.J. (2004). Antibacterial activity of the Chinese traditional medicine, Zi Hua Di Ding. Phytotherapy Research 18: 497-500.
- Grayer, R.J., Eckert, M.R., Veitch, N.C., Kite, G.C., Marin, P.D., Kokubun, T., Simmonds, M.S.J. & Paton, A.J. (2003). The chemotaxonomic significance of two bioactive caffeic acid esters, nepetoidins A and B, in the Lamiaceae. Phytochemistry 64: 519-528.
Bridge, P.D., Kokubun, T. & Simmonds, M.S.J. (2003). Protein extraction from fungi. In Methods in Molecular Biology Volume 244: Protein Purification Protocols 2nd edition (ed. P. Cutler) pp. 37-46. Humana Press: Totowa, US.
- Kokubun, T., Veitch, N.C., Bridge, P.D. & Simmonds, M.S.J. (2003). Dihydroisocoumarins and a tetralone from Cytospora eucalypticola. Phytochemistry 62: 779-782.
- Hudson, E.A., Dinh, P.A., Kokubun, T., Simmonds, M.S.J. & Gescher, A. (2000). Characterization of potentially chemopreventive phenols in extracts of brown rice that inhibit the growth of human breast and colon cancer cells. Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers and Prevention 9: 1163-1170.