Gene Research Center is a Joint Usage/Research Center for Studies on Genetically Modified Plants.

The Gene Research Center (GRC) is university-attached institute constituting Tsukuba Plant Innovation Research Center (T-PIRC) for plant science and plant biotechnology researches.

We are focusing on function and structure of plant genes, its regulation mechanisms and also promoting its applicable uses. Our main research fields are plant molecular biology, developmental biology, plant cell and physiology, environmental response, plant-microbe interaction, epigenetics, genetic resource, evolutionary studies, molecular breeding, genetic engineering, genetic modification, food science, environmental risk assessment etc.

We also aim to facilitate GM plant researches in both in basics and application at the international level, and to provide novel academic knowledge promoting development of innovative biotechnology and new breeding technology. In addition, we foster young plant researchers and promote their wider exchange.

Research progress

Salt-tolerant transgenic Eucalyptus (left) and potato (right)

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Genome-edited morning glory (left) and tomato (right)

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Tomato varieties selected via the National BioResource Project

  •  |Gene Research CenterFruit size
  •  |Gene Research CenterFruit color
  •  |Gene Research CenterFruit shape
  •  |Gene Research CenterFlower shape
  •  |Gene Research CenterInflorescence shape
  •  |Gene Research CenterRamification
  •  |Gene Research CenterLeaf surface
  •  |Gene Research CenterLeaf shape


National Institute of Agricultural
Research of France – INRA-Bordeaux
National Institute of Agricultural|Gene Research Center
National Genetic
Resources Center of Mexico
National Genetic|Gene Research Center
Plant Resilience Institute,
Michigan State University, USA
Plant Resilience Institute|Gene Research Center
Biotechnology Center of
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Biotechnology Center|Gene Research Center

Main projects funded by external funds

Center of the National BioResource Project (NBRP) “TOMATO” 2007-
NBRP-Tomato is one of national bioresource projects which aim to collect, preserve and provide bio-resources (animal, plants and other living materials) for promoting life science research supported by MEXT. The Gene Research Center plays a crucial role in contributing tomato bioresource.
French-Japanese Joint Laboratory (TIL) 2008-
We established University of Tsukuba-INRA Joint Laboratory (TIL) with French National Agricultural Research Institute (INRA) Bordeaux center in 2008 to promote research collaborations in plant science field, especially in tomato genomics. Through this flame-work, we promote students and faculty staff exchange and to development of human resources contributing to international research cooperation.
Cross-ministerial Strategic Innovation Promotion Program (SIP) 2014-
“Technologies for Creating next-Generation Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries”
We are developing high-functional and high-quality crops especially in tomato and melon of commercial varieties by applying genome editing techniques. We are also accumulating knowledge scientific analysis and social-scientific study for social-implementation of genome editing techniques.
Science and Technology Research Partnership for Sustainable Development (SATREPS) 2012-2018
The project is named Diversity Assessment and Development of Sustainable Use of Mexican Genetic Resources: Bringing Stability to World Food Supplies with Japanese Technology and Mexican Resources.
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  • projects|Gene Research Center
  • projects|Gene Research Center
  • projects|Gene Research Center
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  • projects|Gene Research Center
  • projects|Gene Research Center
  • projects|Gene Research Center
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  • contact-access|Gene Research Center
  • contact-access|Gene Research Center