Dr. Yukiko Yamashita, a biologist working for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), dedicates her research to studying asymmetrical cell division, a process she says is critical for differentiation of tissue cells as well as the fermentation process. Dr. Yamashita grew up always knowing that she would pursue a scientific career. After high school, she attended the Kyoto University as a major in biology. Through her research, Dr. Yamashita overturned many common misconceptions about “junk DNA,” pointing out that these sequences would not be coded with so much DNA if they didn’t serve a purpose. Later in her career, Dr. Yamashita joined MIT, becoming a faculty member in 2020. She became the inaugural holder of the Susan Lindquist Chair for Women in Science and a professor in the Department of Biology later that year.
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