Tomoichiro Oka, PhD
Visiting Scholar, Saif Lab
Food Animal Health Research Program
Ohio State University
Dr.Tomoichiro Oka is a senior researcher in the Department of Virology II of the National Institute of Infectious Diseases in Japan. Currently he is studying as a visiting scholar at Dr. Linda J. Saif’s lab in the Food Animal Health Research Program, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, The Ohio State University, Wooster, OH.
He received his BS degree in 1993, a Master’s degree in 1995, and a PhD degree in 2002 in Pharmaceutics from Showa Pharmaceutical University, Japan. From 1995 to 2002, he was a researcher in the Research and Development Center at Bio Medical Laboratories (BML), Inc. in Japan. In 2002, he joined the Department of Virology II of the National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Japan, as a researcher.
His research focuses mainly on noroviruses and sapoviruses. He developed broadly reactive PCR assays for the detection of human Sapovirus, and applied this method to identify Sapoviruses from sporadic and outbreak gastroenteritis cases (including food-borne suspect cases). These studies highlighted the importance of Sapovirus associated with gastroenteritis in all ages. Furthermore, he recently established a human Sapovirus classification scheme. He also works on the function analysis of viral enzymes of Noroviruses and Sapoviruses. He has published more than ten first-authored and dozens of co-authored papers in peer-reviewed international journals.