Major research activity
I started my carrier in the theoretical study of ecology, evolution, and animal behavior, including the evolution of mate preference, the dynamics of tropical forests, and social-ecological coupled dynamics for ecosystem management. More recently I have also been working on biological rhythm, cancer, development, and immune system, as well as cultural/social studies. I repeatedly found that the same mathematical and computational methods are applicable to diverse branches of biology, and similar concepts are able to give insights in different subfields of life sciences. Following are some of the study topics in the current laboratory:
 Computer simulation of group formation of fish and birds, and how animals search for foods.
 Synchronized reproduction of trees in the forest (masting) is very commonly observed. The reason why trees reproduce intermittently (instead of every year) and why different trees are synchronized in reproduction are targets of theoretical study.
 Diverse patterns of life history and sex expression are shown in marine organisms, ranging from sex change of coral fish, dwarf male in barnacles, or haploid/diploid genomes of sea algea. These can be modeled as optimal strategies of organisms and can be modeled as the optimization and game.
 Models for phenomena within a body, such as cancer and malignant progression, emergence of drug resistant microbes, morphogenesis in development are also topics for study.
Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (since 2006). Co-Chief-Editor of Journal of Theoretical Biology (since 2005), and the editorial boards of many ecology and mathematical biology journals. Laureates of the Akira-Okubo prize of Society for mathematical biology /JSMB (2017), the Ecological Society of Japan award (2003), and Motoo-Kimura memorial prize of SCSJ (2003). For a list of publications, check Yoh Iwasa at Google Scholar Citations.
Major relevant publications
- Hara, A. and Y. Iwasa. 2017. When is allergen immunotherapy effective? Journal of Theoretical Biology 425:23-42.
- Yamaguchi, S. and Y. Iwasa. 2017. Advantage of sex changer who keeps gonad of non-functional sex. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 71:39
- Ohtsuki H, Iwasa Y, Nowak MA .2015. Reputation Effects in Public and Private Interactions. PLoS Computational Biology 11(11): e1004527.
- Lee, J-H., K. Kakinuma, T. Okuro and Y. Iwasa. 2015. Coupled social and ecological dynamics for herders in Mongolian rangeland. Ecological Economics 114: 208-217.
- Halley, J.M., and Y. Iwasa. 2011. Neutral theory as a predictor of avifaunal extinctions following habitat loss. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. USA 108:2316-2321.