Koichi Tanaka

 Mass spectrometry (MS) is a method for measuring the weight of molecules and analyzing their contents. MS is widely used in various fields of science and technology, as it is an extremely effective method to measure the base quantity of compounds, both natural and artificial, and to identify them. Recently, the focus is on its application in the fields of medicine and pharmaceutics.

 We need to uncover the mysteries of physiological mechanisms of a human body if we wish to stay healthy and readily cure any sickness that strikes us. Thanks to the efforts of researchers and engineers around the world, a great deal is already known about our bodies. Yet, it must also be said that we still know only a small fraction of what there is to know. This is because hundreds of thousands of different compounds are intricately intertwined in our bodies, but many substances that play a very important role despite existing in minute quantities are yet to be identified.

 Through the development of the next-generation ultra-high-sensitivity mass spectrometry system, we aim to contribute not only to the medical and pharmaceutical fields, but also to a wide range of other science and technologies.


Name Koichi Tanaka
Brief Resume of Past and Present Activities
Apr. 1983 Central Research Laboratory, Shimadzu Corp.
May 1986 R&D Department, Scientific Equipment Division, Shimadzu Corp.
Jan. 1992 Kratos Group PLC. in UK
Dec. 1992 R&D Department, Analytical Instrument Division, Shimadzu Corp.
Apr. 1997 Shimadzu Research Laboratory (Europe) Ltd. in UK
Dec. 1999 Kratos Group PLC. in UK
May 2002 Life Science Research Center, Analytical & Measuring Instruments Division, Shimadzu Corp.
Nov. 2002 – present Fellow, Shimadzu Corp.
Jan. 2003 – present General Manager, Mass Spectrometry Research Lab., Shimadzu Corp.
Mar. 2010 – present General Manager, Koichi Tanaka Laboratory of Advanced Science and Technology, Shimadzu Corp.
Honors & Awards
May 1989 Encouragement Award from the Mass Spectrometry Society of Japan
Nov. 2002 Order of Culture
Dec. 2002 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Research fields
Development of tools and methods for the analysis of protein and carbohydrate structures