Eigo Fukai

Niigata University, Niahi-niigata, Niigata, Japan

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Publications (19)86.58 Total impact

  • Euphytica 11/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10681-015-1596-8 · 1.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The methylation patterns of plants are unique in that besides the methylation at CG dinucleotides, which occurs in mammals as well, methylation also occurs at non-CG sites. Genes are methylated at CG sites, but transposable elements (TEs) are methylated at both CG and non-CG sites. The role of non-CG methylation in the transcriptional silencing of TEs is being extensively studied, but only very rare transpositions have been reported when the non-CG methylation machineries were compromised. To understand the role of non-CG methylation in the suppression of TEs and in plant development, we characterized rice mutants of the chromomethylase gene, OsCMT3a. oscmt3a mutants exhibited a dramatic decrease in CHG methylation, changes in expression of a number of genes and TEs, and pleiotropic developmental abnormalities. Genome resequencing identified eight TE families mobilized in oscmt3a during normal propagation. These TEs include tissue-culture-activated copia retrotransposons Tos17 and Tos19 (Lullaby), a pericentromeric clustered high-copy-number non-autonomous gypsy retrotransposon Dasheng, two copia retrotransposons Osr4 and Osr13, a hAT-tip100 transposon DaiZ, a MITE transposon mPing, and a LINE element LINE1-6_OS. We confirmed the transposition of these TEs by PCR and/or Southern analysis, and showed that the transposition depends on the oscmt3a mutation. These results demonstrated that OsCMT3a-mediated non-CG DNA methylations play a critical role in development and in the suppression of a wide spectrum of TEs. These in planta mobile TEs are significant for studying the interaction between TEs and the host genome, and for rice functional genomics. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    The Plant Journal 08/2015; 83(6). DOI:10.1111/tpj.12952 · 5.97 Impact Factor

  • Breeding Research 01/2015; 17(2):77-87. DOI:10.1270/jsbbr.17.77
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    ABSTRACT: Key message: We identified the candidate gene conferring yellow wilt resistance (YR) in B. oleracea . This work will facilitate YR breeding programs for B. oleracea and its closely related species. Yellow wilt disease is one of the most serious diseases of cabbage worldwide. Type A resistance to the disease is controlled by a single dominant gene that is used in cabbage breeding. Our previous QTL study identified the FocBo1 locus controlling type A resistance. In this study, the FocBo1 locus was fine-mapped by using 139 recombinant F2 plants derived from resistant cabbage (AnjuP01) and susceptible broccoli (GCP04) DH lines. As a result, we successfully delimited the location of FocBo1 within 1.00 cM between markers, BoInd 2 and BoInd 11. Analysis of BAC and cosmid sequences corresponding to the FocBo1 locus identified an orthologous gene of Bra012688 that was recently identified as an candidate gene that confers yellows resistance in Chinese cabbage. The candidate gene-specific DNA markers and phenotypes in F1 cabbage cultivars and their selfed F2 populations showed a perfect correlation. Our identification of the candidate gene for FocBo1 will assist introduction of fusarium resistance into B. oleracea cultivars and contribute further understanding of interaction between Brassica plants and fusarium.
    Theoretical and Applied Genetics 10/2014; 128(1). DOI:10.1007/s00122-014-2416-6 · 3.79 Impact Factor
  • Eigo Fukai · Jens Stougaard · Makoto Hayashi ·
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    ABSTRACT: Long terminal repeat retrotransposons occupy a large portion of genomes in flowering plants. In spite of their abundance, the majority are silenced and rarely transpose. One of the examples of a highly active retrotransposon is Lotus Retrotransposon 1 (LORE1), of the model legume Lotus japonicus (Regel) K. Larsen (syn. Lotus corniculatus L. var. japonicus Regel). LORE1 has several unusual characteristics that are interesting both for studying evolutional genomics and for the use of LORE1 as a genetic tool. In this review, we present the characteristics of LORE1 and discuss the biological significance of LORE1 as a member of chromovirus, a chromodomain containing clade of the Gypsy superfamily. Then we discuss possibilities and methodologies for using endogenous transposable elements as mutagens to generate gene tagging populations in plants.
    The Plant Genome 11/2013; 6(3). DOI:10.3835/plantgenome2013.04.0009 · 3.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Soluble N-Ethylmaleimide Sensitive Factor Attachment Protein Receptor (SNARE) proteins are crucial for signal transduction and development in plants. Here, we investigate a Lotus japonicus symbiotic mutant defective in one of the SNARE proteins. When in symbiosis with rhizobia, the growth of the mutant was retarded compared with that of the wild-type plant. Although the mutant formed nodules, these exhibited lower nitrogen fixation activity than the wild type. The rhizobia were able to invade nodule cells, but enlarged symbiosomes were observed in the infected cells. The causal gene, designated LjSYP71 (for L. japonicus syntaxin of plants71), was identified by map-based cloning and shown to encode a Qc-SNARE protein homologous to Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) SYP71. LjSYP71 was expressed ubiquitously in shoot, roots, and nodules, and transcripts were detected in the vascular tissues. In the mutant, no other visible defects in plant morphology were observed. Furthermore, in the presence of combined nitrogen, the mutant plant grew almost as well as the wild type. These results suggest that the vascular tissues expressing LjSYP71 play a pivotal role in symbiotic nitrogen fixation in L. japonicus nodules.
    Plant physiology 08/2012; 160(2):897-905. DOI:10.1104/pp.112.200782 · 6.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We established a gene tagging population of the model legume Lotus japonicus using an endogenous long terminal repeat (LTR) retrotransposon Lotus Retrotransposon 1 (LORE1). The population was composed of 2450 plant lines, from which a total of 4532 flanking sequence tags of LORE1 were recovered by pyrosequencing. The two-dimensional arrangement of the plant population, together with the use of multiple identifier sequences in the primers used to amplify the flanking regions, made it possible to trace insertions back to the original plant lines. The large-scale detection of new LORE1 insertion sites revealed a preference for genic regions, especially in exons of protein-coding genes, which is an interesting feature to consider in the interaction between host genomes and chromoviruses, to which LORE1 belongs, a class of retrotransposon widely distributed among plants. Forward screening of the symbiotic mutants from the population succeeded to identify five symbiotic mutants of known genes. These data suggest that LORE1 is robust as a genetic tool.
    The Plant Journal 02/2012; 69(4):720-30. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-313X.2011.04826.x · 5.97 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The whole genome of Jatropha curcas was sequenced, using a combination of the conventional Sanger method and new-generation multiplex sequencing methods. Total length of the non-redundant sequences thus obtained was 285 858 490 bp consisting of 120 586 contigs and 29 831 singlets. They accounted for ∼95% of the gene-containing regions with the average G + C content was 34.3%. A total of 40 929 complete and partial structures of protein encoding genes have been deduced. Comparison with genes of other plant species indicated that 1529 (4%) of the putative protein-encoding genes are specific to the Euphorbiaceae family. A high degree of microsynteny was observed with the genome of castor bean and, to a lesser extent, with those of soybean and Arabidopsis thaliana. In parallel with genome sequencing, cDNAs derived from leaf and callus tissues were subjected to pyrosequencing, and a total of 21 225 unigene data have been generated. Polymorphism analysis using microsatellite markers developed from the genomic sequence data obtained was performed with 12 J. curcas lines collected from various parts of the world to estimate their genetic diversity. The genomic sequence and accompanying information presented here are expected to serve as valuable resources for the acceleration of fundamental and applied research with J. curcas, especially in the fields of environment-related research such as biofuel production. Further information on the genomic sequences and DNA markers is available at http://www.kazusa.or.jp/jatropha/.
    DNA Research 02/2011; 18(1):65-76. DOI:10.1093/dnares/dsq030 · 5.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Transposable elements represent a large proportion of the eukaryotic genomes. Long Terminal Repeat (LTR) retrotransposons are very abundant and constitute the predominant family of transposable elements in plants. Recent studies have identified chromoviruses to be a widely distributed lineage of Gypsy elements. These elements contain chromodomains in their integrases, which suggests a preference for insertion into heterochromatin. In turn, this preference might have contributed to the patterning of heterochromatin observed in host genomes. Despite their potential importance for our understanding of plant genome dynamics and evolution, the regulatory mechanisms governing the behavior of chromoviruses and their activities remain largely uncharacterized. Here, we report a detailed analysis of the spatio-temporal activity of a plant chromovirus in the endogenous host. We examined LORE1a, a member of the endogenous chromovirus LORE1 family from the model legume Lotus japonicus. We found that this chromovirus is stochastically de-repressed in plant populations regenerated from de-differentiated cells and that LORE1a transposes in the male germline. Bisulfite sequencing of the 5' LTR and its surrounding region suggests that tissue culture induces a loss of epigenetic silencing of LORE1a. Since LTR promoter activity is pollen specific, as shown by the analysis of transgenic plants containing an LTR::GUS fusion, we conclude that male germline-specific LORE1a transposition in pollen grains is controlled transcriptionally by its own cis-elements. New insertion sites of LORE1a copies were frequently found in genic regions and show no strong insertional preferences. These distinctive novel features of LORE1 indicate that this chromovirus has considerable potential for generating genetic and epigenetic diversity in the host plant population. Our results also define conditions for the use of LORE1a as a genetic tool.
    PLoS Genetics 03/2010; 6(3):e1000868. DOI:10.1371/journal.pgen.1000868 · 7.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Infection thread-dependent invasion of legume roots by rhizobia leads to internalization of bacteria into the plant cells, which is one of the salient features of root nodule symbiosis. We found that two genes, Nap1 (for Nck-associated protein 1) and Pir1 (for 121F-specific p53 inducible RNA), involved in actin rearrangements were essential for infection thread formation and colonization of Lotus japonicus roots by its natural microsymbiont, Mesorhizobium loti. nap1 and pir1 mutants developed an excess of uncolonized nodule primordia, indicating that these two genes were not essential for the initiation of nodule organogenesis per se. However, both the formation and subsequent progression of infection threads into the root cortex were significantly impaired in these mutants. We demonstrate that these infection defects were due to disturbed actin cytoskeleton organization. Short root hairs of the mutants had mostly transverse or web-like actin filaments, while bundles of actin filaments in wild-type root hairs were predominantly longitudinal. Corroborating these observations, temporal and spatial differences in actin filament organization between wild-type and mutant root hairs were also observed after Nod factor treatment, while calcium influx and spiking appeared unperturbed. Together with various effects on plant growth and seed formation, the nap1 and pir1 alleles also conferred a characteristic distorted trichome phenotype, suggesting a more general role for Nap1 and Pir1 in processes establishing cell polarity or polar growth in L. japonicus.
    The Plant Cell 02/2009; 21(1):267-84. DOI:10.1105/tpc.108.063693 · 9.34 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We have identified a new Ty3-gypsy retrotransposon family named LORE2 (Lotus retrotransposon 2) and documented its activity in the model legume Lotus japonicus. Three new LORE2 insertions were found in symbiotic mutant alleles isolated from a plant population, established by tissue culture mediated transformation of the L. japonicus Gifu accession. Low transcriptional and transpositional activities of LORE2 in cultured cells suggested that the LORE2 transpositions identified in the three symbiotic mutants occurred in intact plants, not in callus. Tracing of the transpositional events identified two active LORE2 members in Gifu. One of them named LORE2A possesses a deletion in its coding region and polymorphisms between intraelemental LTRs. LORE2A is thus an aged element, estimated as 600 thousand years old. Our findings indicate that plant genomes carry more cryptic LTR retrotransposons, i.e., aged yet active, than estimated before, and that these cryptic elements may have contributed to plant genome dynamics, for example, the burst of transpositions reported in several plant species.
    Plant Molecular Biology 10/2008; 68(6):653-63. DOI:10.1007/s11103-008-9397-2 · 4.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Legume-Rhizobium symbiosis is an example of selective cell recognition controlled by host/non-host determinants. Individual bacterial strains have a distinct host range enabling nodulation of a limited set of legume species and vice versa. We show here that expression of Lotus japonicus Nfr1 and Nfr5 Nod-factor receptor genes in Medicago truncatula and L. filicaulis, extends their host range to include bacterial strains, Mesorhizobium loti or DZL, normally infecting L. japonicus. As a result, the symbiotic program is induced, nodules develop and infection threads are formed. Using L. japonicus mutants and domain swaps between L. japonicus and L. filicaulis NFR1 and NFR5, we further demonstrate that LysM domains of the NFR1 and NFR5 receptors mediate perception of the bacterial Nod-factor signal and that recognition depends on the structure of the lipochitin-oligosaccharide Nod-factor. We show that a single amino-acid variation in the LysM2 domain of NFR5 changes recognition of the Nod-factor synthesized by the DZL strain and suggests a possible binding site for bacterial lipochitin-oligosaccharide signal molecules.
    The EMBO Journal 10/2007; 26(17):3923-35. DOI:10.1038/sj.emboj.7601826 · 10.43 Impact Factor
  • Ryo Fujimoto · Tetsu Sugimura · Eigo Fukai · Takeshi Nishio ·
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    ABSTRACT: Mutations in the S locus of a self-compatible cultivar Yellow Sarson in Brassica rapa, which has a self-compatible class-I S haplotype, S-f2, were investigated. S-28 in Brassica oleracea was found to be a member of an interspecific pair with S-f2 in B. rapa. The original S haplotype of S-f2 was identified to be S-54 in B. rapa. Sequence comparison of alleles in S-f2 with those in S-54 and B. oleracea S-28 revealed insertion of a retrotransposon-like sequence in the first intron of SRK and 89-bp deletion in the promoter region of SP11. No transcripts of SRK and SP11 were detected in S-f2 homozygotes, suggesting that the insertion and the deletion in SRK and SP11, respectively, caused the loss of the function of these genes. Promoter assay using transgenic plants indicated that the SP11 promoter of S-f2 has no activity. Heterozygotes of S-f2 and a normal class-II S haplotype, S-60, in B. rapa were found to be self-compatible. Interestingly, transcription of SP11-60 was revealed to be suppressed in the S-f2/S-60 heterozygotes, suggesting that an untranscribed class-I SP11 allele suppresses the expression of a recessive class-II SP11 allele in the anthers of S heterozygotes. Similar phenomenon was observed in heterozygotes of a self-compatible class-I S haplotype and a self-incompatible class-II S haplotype in B. oleracea.
    Plant Molecular Biology 08/2006; 61(4-5):577-87. DOI:10.1007/s11103-006-0032-9 · 4.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The determinants of recognition specificity of self-incompatibility in Brassica are SRK in the stigma and SP11/SCR in the pollen, both of which are encoded in the S locus. The nucleotide sequence analyses of many SRK and SP11/SCR alleles have identified several interspecific pairs of S haplotypes having highly similar sequences between B. oleracea and B. rapa. These interspecific pairs of S haplotypes are considered to be derived from common ancestors and to have maintained the same recognition specificity after speciation. In this study, the genome structures of three interspecific pairs of S haplotypes were compared by sequencing SRK, SP11/SCR, and their flanking regions. Regions between SRK and SP11/SCR in B. oleracea were demonstrated to be much longer than those of B. rapa and several retrotransposon-like sequences were identified in the S locus in B. oleracea. Among the seven retrotransposon-like sequences, six sequences were found to belong to the ty3 gypsy group. The gag sequences of the retrotransposon-like sequences were phylogenetically different from each other. In Southern blot analysis using retrotransposon-like sequences as probes, the B. oleracea genome showed more signals than the B. rapa genome did. These findings suggest a role for the S locus and genome evolution in self-incompatible plant species.
    Genetics 07/2006; 173(2):1157-67. DOI:10.1534/genetics.104.037267 · 5.96 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We have identified a low-copy-number retrotransposon family present in nine to 10 copies in the Lotus japonicus model legume genome, and characterized its activity. LORE1 (Lotus retrotransposon 1) belongs to the Ty3-gypsy group of elements, and is a long terminal repeat (LTR) retrotransposon. Genetic mapping located LORE1 elements in gene-rich regions of Lotus chromosomes, and analysis of native as well as new insertion sites revealed integration outside the highly repetitive sequences of centromeres and telomeres. Sequencing of individual LORE1 family members identified several intact elements, and analysis of new insertions showed that at least one member is active and reinserts into functional genes, creating gene-disruption mutations. Southern blot analysis and SSAP on a selection of symbiotic mutants revealed up to 12 new insertion sites in individual mutant lines and a Mendelian segregation of new inserts. Expression analysis showed that LORE1 elements are transcribed in all organs analysed and, in contrast to other active retrotransposons, LORE1 appears not to be transcriptionally upregulated during in vitro tissue culture. Activity of LORE1 in callus and whole plants suggests that a simple insertion mutagenesis based on endogenous LORE1 elements can be established for Lotus.
    The Plant Journal 12/2005; 44(3):372-81. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-313X.2005.02534.x · 5.97 Impact Factor
  • E Fukai · R Fujimoto · T Nishio ·
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    ABSTRACT: The nucleotide sequence of an 86.4-kb region that includes the SP11, SRK, and SLG genes of Brassica rapa S-60 (a class-II S haplotype) was determined. In the sequenced region, 13 putative genes were found besides SP11-60, SRK-60, and SLG-60. Five of these sequences were isolated as cDNAs, five were homologues of known genes, cDNAs, or ORFs, and three are hypothetical ORFs. Based on their nucleotide sequences, however, some of them are thought to be non-functional. Two regions of colinearity between the class-II S-60 and Brassica class-I S haplotypes were identified, i.e., S flanking region 1 which shows partial colinearity of non-genic sequences and S flanking region 2 which shows a high level of colinearity. The observed colinearity made it possible to compare the order of SP-11, SRK, and SLG genes in the S locus between the five sequenced S haplotypes. It emerged that the order of SRK and SLG in class-II S-60 is the reverse of that in the four class-I S haplotypes reported so far, and the order of SP11, SRK and SLG is the opposite of that in the class-I haplotype S-910. The possible gene designated as SAN1 (S locus Anther-expressed Non-coding RNA like-1), which is located in the region between SP11-60 and SRK-60, has features reminiscent of genes for non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs), but no homologous sequences were found in the databases. This sequence is transcribed in anthers but not in stigmas or leaves. These features of the genomic structure of S-60 are discussed with special reference to the characteristics of class-II S haplotypes.
    Molecular Genetics and Genomics 07/2003; 269(3):361-9. DOI:10.1007/s00438-003-0844-0 · 2.73 Impact Factor
  • Fukai E. · Nishio T. · M E Nasrallah ·
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    ABSTRACT: The MIP-MOD (for MOD-locus associated Major Intrinsic Protein) gene encodes an aquaporin-like product, and has been reported to be a candidate for the MOD gene which is required for the self-incompatibility response in Brassica rapa. In an antisense suppression experiment designed to investigate the role of MIP-MOD, we found that levels of MIP-MOD mRNA in the stigmas of fourteen antisense transgenics, as well as in the self-incompatible cultivar Osome (Osm), were much lower than in the stigmas of the self-incompatible S8 homozygous (S8) strain. Therefore, we analyzed the molecular structure of the MIP-MOD gene in three B. rapa strains: S8, Osm, and the self-compatible var. Yellow Sarson (YS). Nucleotide sequence analysis of the MIP-MOD genes isolated from the three strains revealed that all three encode the same amino acid sequence and that YS and Osm contain the same MIP-MOD allele, designated MIP-MOD(YS). Analysis of other self-incompatible B. rapa strains that are homozygous for the MIP-MOD(YS) allele indicated that high levels of MIP-MOD transcripts are not essential for the self-incompatibility response. Furthermore, a MOD mutant generated by gamma-irradiation was found to contain a wild-type MIP-MOD gene that is expressed at normal levels. These data suggest that MIP-MOD is not MOD itself. We suggest that this gene should be renamed MLM (for MIP gene linked to MOD).
    Molecular Genetics and Genomics 06/2001; 265(3):519-25. DOI:10.1007/s004380000440 · 2.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Characterization of monogenic symbiotic mutant phenotypes found by forward genetic screens has been instrumental for establishing the framework of genes coordinating nodule formation in the model legumes Lotus japonicus and Medicago truncatula. To complement this approach it is now important to investigate more complex traits governing symbiosis. We are in the process of transforming the genomic resources of the model legume L. japonicus to allow QTL and genome-wide association studies of multigene inherited traits to be combined with efficient validation by reverse genetics. These approaches require a complete and well-annotated genome, a catalog of natural variation, and a comprehensive mutant collection. We have produced accurate gene models using a hierarchical selection scheme that combines mRNA-seq data, ab initio modeling and homology information. Using these models, we have annotated the effects on gene structure and coding sequence of SNPs detected by full genome re-sequencing of 30 natural L. japonicus accessions. The new models were also used to annotate more than 200,000 LORE1 retrotransposon insertions, allowing us to identify knockout alleles for the majority of L. japonicus protein coding genes. The LORE1 mutant lines can be ordered at http://carb.au.dk/resources/ and http://www.kazusa.or.jp/lotus/LORE1/index.html. Urbański et al. Genome-wide LORE1 retrotransposon mutagenesis and high-throughput insertion detection in Lotus japonicus. Plant J (2012) vol. 69 (4) pp. 731-41 Fukai et al. Establishment of a Lotus japonicus gene tagging population using the exon-targeting endogenous retrotransposon LORE1. Plant J (2012) vol. 69 (4) pp. 720-30
    International Plant and Animal Genome Conference XXII 2014;
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the whole genetic system of legume species, we have been analyzing the genome of a model legume, Lotus japonicus. The latest version of the genome sequence information (release 2.5) generated by clone-by-clone and selected TAC mixture sequencing is provided through our web database, “miyakogusa.jp” (http://kazusa.or.jp/lotus/). Toward the completion of L. japonicus genome sequencing, we are currently working on further improvement by adding the sequence information generated from second generation sequencers. By integrating paired end sequences generated from 454 and Illumina sequencers, scaffolding and gap filling of current pseudomolecules are on going. Status of this integration approach will be presented. Along with the accumulation of genome information, the demand for an efficient experimental tool for gene function analysis has been increasing. Reverse genetics is one of the effective approaches. In order to establish the basis for reverse genetic approach, we are currently preparing large scale insertion tag lines applying endogenous retrotransposon of L. japonicus named LORE1. Since LORE1 transposition occurs in the germline, seeds harvested from a single activated line have different insertion sites in their genomes, and thus can be considered as independent tag lines. The large-scale detection of LORE1 insertion sites using second generation sequencers revealed a preference for genic regions, especially in exons of protein coding genes. With these features suitable for gene tagging line construction combined with established high-throughput FST analysis system, LORE1 insertion lines pave the way to development of a comprehensive reverse genetic resource.
    International Plant and Animal Genome Conference XX 2012;

Publication Stats

533 Citations
86.58 Total Impact Points


  • 2014
    • Niigata University
      • Graduate School of Science and Technology
      Niahi-niigata, Niigata, Japan
  • 2013
    • The Graduate University for Advanced Studies
      Миура, Kanagawa, Japan
  • 2006-2012
    • National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences
      • • Division of Plant Sciences
      • • Institute of Radiation Breeding
      Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan
    • Aarhus University
      Aarhus, Central Jutland, Denmark
  • 2011
    • National Institute of Genetics
      Мисима, Shizuoka, Japan
  • 2001-2003
    • Tohoku University
      • Graduate School of Agricultural Science
      Sendai, Kagoshima, Japan