Research in Focus

  • Discovery of 'Ouija board' protein summoning 'spookier' gene
    ~ A new finding on insect steroid hormone biosynthesis ~

    A new protein that appears to have an important role in controlling the expression of an enzyme gene 'spookier' in the biosynthesis of ecdysteroid or insect molting hormone, was found from a study using yellow fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. This is the first report describing a transcription factor that is specialized for the regulation of only one ecdysteroidogenic gene in invertebrates. It is highly anticipated that this study will provide novel insights into the regulatory mechanism of steroid hormone biosynthesis and its evolution in animals and that can be used in developing agricultural chemicals that target only insect pests.

    研究イメージ

    Read more.

  • Elucidating the inhibition mechanism of insect metamorphosis by juvenile hormone
    ~ Towards the development of insect-targeting pesticides ~

    The mechanism in the suppression of metamorphosis in insects involving a juvenile hormone was elucidated for the first time in the world. By directly restraining the expression of the specific gene (BR-C) that controls insect development from the larval to the pupal stage, the protein (Kr-h1) stimulated by the juvenile hormone could directly inhibit the metamorphosis. It is therefore possible to control the activity of this protein and develop agricultural chemicals that target only insect pests.

    研究イメージ

    Read more.

  • Azuki bean genome is completely sequenced
    ~ Towards accelerating the breeding of novel azuki cultivars ~

    The genome sequence of azuki bean has been completely deciphered covering 95% of the entire genome, and approximately 30,000 genes have been identified. This will facilitate the characterization of many agronomically important genes such as cold resistance and traits associated with mechanical harvesting, and accelerate the improvement of azuki bean by genomics-assisted breeding. Furthermore, efficient utilization of genome information that could lead to the development of novel azuki bean cultivars with highly desirable traits.

    研究イメージ

    Read more.

  • Elucidating the mechanism of resistance to rice blast under low temperature
    ~ Towards enhanced disease resistance even in cold summer ~

    The blast disease, which causes serious damage to rice crops, is induced by a filamentous fungus and the damage is further aggravated particularly under cold summer conditions. The mechanism involving induction of an enzyme that in turn impairs resistance to rice blast when the temperature drops has been elucidated. By controlling the action of the gene that codes for this enzyme, resistance to rice blast can be enhanced even under cold stress conditions thereby paving the way for developing highly resistant rice cultivars.

    研究イメージ

    Read more.

  • Elucidating the origin and spread of ancient rice
    ~ Easy breeding of black grain trait in rice ~

    The causative gene of the black color of grains in black rice (also referred to as purple rice) and known in ancient times as “Emperor’s” rice has been identified. An extensive analysis of the genes associated with grain color in about 50 rice cultivars traces the origin of the black trait and how the causative gene spread into modern rice cultivars. These results will also facilitate the breeding and incorporation of the black rice trait into white rice cultivars.

    研究イメージ

    Read more.

  • Elucidating the origin of cultivated barley as evidence of earliest human agriculture
    ~ Towards accelerating cultivar improvement in wheat and barley ~

    研究イメージ

    The origin of the agronomic trait in barley that retains the grains on the inflorescence at maturity which led to effective harvesting, and therefore plays major role in barley domestication has been elucidated. The barley cultivars widely grown in Europe and the western hemisphere originated from mutations of ancestral lines which occurred approximately 10,000 years ago in southern region of Levant in Israel, whereas the barley cultivars which spread in Japan and the eastern hemisphere originated from later mutations which occurred in northern Levant from northwest Syria to southeast Turkey. This is the first report that identifies the exact location of the origin of barley domestication and provides a direct evidence of the earliest human agriculture. The ancestors of cultivated barley which originated from the northern and southern Levant differ from each other in many agronomic traits. Crossbreeding of cultivars from each ancestral group will facilitate the incorporation of specific novel traits, and accelerate an efficient cultivar improvement in wheat and barley.


    Read more.

•  2015.12.11  Discovery of 'Ouija board' protein summoning 'spookier' gene
•  2015.12.01  Elucidating the inhibition mechanism of insect metamorphosis by juvenile hormone
•  2015.12.01  Azuki bean genome is completely sequenced
•  2015.11.17  Elucidating the mechanism of resistance to rice blast under low temperature
•  2015.09.14  Elucidating the origin and spread of ancient rice
•  2015.07.29  Elucidating the origin of cultivated barley as evidence of earliest human agriculture
•  2015.07.21  Generation of "juvenile hormone" free silkworms by genome editing
•  2015.07.17  Development of rice capable of accumulating high levels of cadmium for bioremediation of contaminated rice fields
•  2015.06.09  Development of easy-to-use and beautiful healing bandage-type artificial skin
•  2015.03.30  Unified information towards promoting the use of DNA markers breeding in a wide range of crops
•  2015.02.12  Conferring strong multiple disease resistance in rice without using pesticides
•  2015.12.11  Discovery of 'Ouija board' protein summoning 'spookier' gene
•  2015.12.1  Elucidating the inhibition mechanism of insect metamorphosis by juvenile hormone
•  2015.12.1  Azuki bean genome is completely sequenced
•  2015.11.17  Elucidating the mechanism of resistance to rice blast under low temperature
•  2015.09.14  Elucidating the origin and spread of ancient rice
•  2015.07.29  Elucidating the origin of cultivated barley as evidence of earliest human agriculture
•  2015.07.17  Development of rice capable of accumulating high levels of cadmium for bioremediation of contaminated rice fields
•  2015.06.09  Development of easy-to-use and beautiful healing bandage-type artificial skin
•  2015.03.30  Unified information towards promoting the use of DNA markers breeding in a wide range of crops
•  2015.02.12  Conferring strong multiple disease resistance in rice without using pesticides
•  2014.12.25  Conferring strong multiple disease resistance in rice without using pesticides
•  2014.12.25  Precise gene modification in rice without leaving unnecessary sequences
•  2014.12.10  Unified information to intensify the utilization of rice DNA markers in breeding
•  2014.12.02  Soybean gene controlling pod dehiscence
•  2014.11.21  Development of a simple and highly efficient genetic integration method via genome editing
•  2014.10.29  Broad-spectrum resistance to brown planthopper in rice
•  2014.10.28  Genome-wide association study of metabolites in 175 rice cultivars
•  2014.10.03  Discovery of a new indispensable gene for regulation of cellular cholesterol behavior
•  2014.09.22  A transcription factor regulates the number of root nodules
•  2014.09.19   New biomaterial for corneal regeneration derived from porcine collagen
•  2014.09.12  Decoding the genome of extreme desiccation-tolerant sleeping chironomid
•  2014.09.01  Discovery of a rice almighty gene with multiple functions
•  2014.08.27  Silk produced by transgenic silkworm expressing spider dragline silk protein
•  2014.08.25  Identification of a novel promoter that can induce strong and ubiquitous gene expression in transgenic silkworm
•  2014.08.20  Elucidating the mechanism of recognition and evasion in viral infection of tomato
•  2014.08.19  Successful production of silk fibers with unnatural amino acids
•  2014.07.18  Genetic blueprint of the wheat genome revealed
•  2014.06.16  World’s first production of piglets from cryopreserved oocytes
•  2014.05.19  Discovery of synergistic insecticidal effect of calcium oxalate crystals and protease
•  2014.05.15  Development of a database to maximize the utilization of large-scale data on agrigenomics
•  2014.04.30  PGR Asia as a platform for efficient access to plant genetic resources in Asian region
Details here (in Japanese only).
•  2014.04.15  Space experiment on the effect of microgravity on midge
•  2014.03.03  Towards improving artificial insemination efficiency in cattle
•  2014.02.24  Identification of a new type semiochemical carrier protein that mediates chemical communication in ants
•  2014.02.20  Sex pheromone successfully controls sugarcane insect pest
•  2014.01.22  Discovery of a leech that can survive extremely low temperature
•  2013.12.11  Development of the technology to evaluate the function of a specific domain of intracellular protein
•  2013.09.30  Information on NIAS Symposium on “Prospects for Next-generation Crop Breeding Using Genome Information”
•  2013.09.25  Detection and verification of QTLs associated with heat-induced quality decline of rice
•  2013.09.17  Deciphering the sequence of more than 10,000 silkworm genes
•  2013.08.29  Identification of the gene which contributes to increased photosynthetic efficiency of high-yielding rice
•  2013.08.12  Piglets generated for the first time using sperm retrieved from immature testicular tissue cryopreserved and grafted into nude mice
•  2013.08.09  Development of a safe testing method using a culture model reflecting the architecture of human corneal epithelium in vivo
•  2013.08.05  Discovery and isolation of the gene that controls deep rooting in rice
•  2013.08.05  Discovery and isolation of the gene that controls deep rooting in rice
•  2013.07.12  Genome analysis of symbiotic microbes in wood-feeding cockroach
•  2013.07.02  Identification of the gene that controls early flowering in cultivar 'Koshihikari'
•  2013.06.13  Elucidating the mechanism of pathogen-induced resistance in rice
•  2013.04.15  Discovery of a gene associated with length and weight of rice grain
•  2013.03.22  Identification of transcriptional activators in legumes that enables nitrogen use in the atmosphere
•  2013.03.12  NIAS Ex-Vice President Takuji Sasaki appointed CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council member
•  2013.02.28  Elucidating the genetic linkage map of brown planthopper
•  2013.02.21  A new strategy for developing new types of crops with resistance to several pathogens X
•  2013.01.17  Discovery of a gene that controls the development of rice inflorescence
•  2012.12.19  Discovery of a method to suppress the composition of the black pigment in insects
•  2012.12.14  Development of the world’s first immunodeficient pig
•  2012.12.07  A system for predicting the expression of all rice genes based on atmospheric data
•  2012.11.15  Decoding the pig genome and sequence of important genes
•  2015.01.20  The website of the 10th anniversary of the completion of the rice genome sequence is now avalable at this link.
•  2015.01.20  Opening of new Genebank facility and 30th anniversary memorial lecture on March 3, 2015
•  2014.10.07  Hikari Exhibition on Oct 28,2014 - Feb 22, 2015
•  2014.10.06  Agribusiness Creation Fair 2014 on November 12-14 at Tokyo Big Sight
•  2014.07.10  Two prominent NIAS scientists in the 'World's Most Influential Scientific Minds 2014'
•  2014.04.23  TBS April 27 Program "Yume no Tobira Plus" features NIAS research on rice DRO1 gene
•  2014.03.20  10th International Conference on Juvenile Hormones
Jun 9-13, 2014, Tsukuba, Japan
•  2014.03.12  BIOtech 2014
May 14-16, 2014 at Tokyo Big Sight
•  2014.02.26  Announcement of NIAS Open House
April 18-19, 2014
•  2014.02.20  Silk Summit in Tomioka Silk Mill
Tomioka City, Gunma, April 17-18, 2014
•  2014.03.20  10th International Conference on Juvenile Hormones on Jun 9-13, 2014, Tsukuba, Japan
•  2014.03.12  BIOtech 2014 on May 14-16, 2014 at Tokyo Big Sight
•  2014.02.26  NIAS Open House on April 18-19, 2014
•  2014.02.20  Silk Summit in Tomioka on April 17-18, 2014
•  2013.10.22  Tsukuba Science Festival 2013 on November 9 & 10, 2013
•  2013.10.21  Joint NARO/ARC and NIAS Research Seminar on ‘How to cope with insecticide resistance’ on November 27 & 28, 2013
•  2013.10.17  Science Agora 2013 on November 9 & 10, 2013
•  2013.10.04  Symposium on "Current status of development of biopharamaceuticals from plants and future prospects" on November 8, 2013
•  2013.09.25  Agribusiness Creation Fair 2013 on October 23-25 at Tokyo Big Sight
•  2013.08.14  NIAS 30th Anniversary Symposium
October 16, 2013, Akihabara UDX, Tokyo
•  2013.08.09  Silk Summit 2013 in Kumejima
October 10-11, 2013
•  2013.07.11  Tsukuba Chibikko Hakasei (PhD Kids) Aug 21-22, 2013
•  2013.07.11  Symposium on Utilization of Genome Information for Next-Generation Crop Breeding Oct 18, 2013
•  2013.05.31  The 52nd Gamma Field Symposium July 17, 2013
Deadline of application on July 10
•  2013.05.17  NIAS Open College starts in September 2013
Application is now open.
•  2013.05.16  Summer Science Camp 2013 Aug 5-7
•  2013.05.15  Microarray Workshop 2013 June 26-28
•  2013.03.08  NIAS / TTC Science Cafe on May 24, 2013, at Tera House in Nakano-ku, Tokyo
•  2013.02.20  Announcement of the JSSS / NIAS Joint Symposium on March 18, 2013, Tsukuba Norin Hall
•  2013.02.20  NIAS Open House on April 19-20, 2013
•  2013.01.21  Reactivation of the gamma field at the Institute of Radiation Breeding
•  2013.01.17  NIAS Science Cafe on Feb. 19, 2013
•  2013.01.08  Announcement of the 7th NIAS Symposium Theme: Utilization of silk fibroin and celisin Feb 21, 2013, Akihabara Convention Hall, Tokyo
•  2013.01.23  Announcement of the NIAS / NILGS Joint Symposium Theme: Current status and future prospects of research on improvement of animal productivity Feb 26, 2013, Epochal Tsukuba
•  2012.05.14  Announcement of the the 12th International Wheat Genetics Symposium Sep 8-14, 2013
•  2015.01.09  Announcement of cultivation of transgenic crops at NIAS for FY2015
•  2014.04.28  Update on the status of GMO crops cultivation in isolation fields
•  2014.03.07  Announcement of cultivation of transgenic rice
March 28, 2014
•  2014.04.21  Update on the status of GMO crops cultivation in isolation fields
•  2013.09.30  Harvesting of transgenic rice for FY2013
•  2013.07.16  Changes in the status of experimental fields used for exhibition of transgenic crops
•  2013.05.24  Schedule of transplanting of transgenic rice (WRKY45) on June 12
•  2013.05.08  Transplanting of transgenic rice with cedar pollen allergen
•  2013.05.02  Announcement of cultivation of transgenic crops at NIAS for FY2013
•  2013.03.06  Schedule of cultivation of transgenic crops at NIAS for FY2014 (Part 2)
•  2013.01.24  Schedule of cultivation of transgenic crops at NIAS for FY2013
•  2013.01.24  Survey of management and crossing of transgenic rice with multiple disease resistant at NIAS for FY2012
•  2013.01.22  Survey of management and crossing of transgenic rice with pollen allergen for FY2012
•  2012.12.25  Announcement of the termination of the transgenic soybean and corn field exhibition for FY2012