Toshio Yamamoto / Professor / Division of Biosciences
Department of Integrated Biosciences / / Rice applied genomics

Career Summary
1991: Graduated from the Faculty of Agriculture, Hokkaido University
1991: Researcher, Japan Tobacco Inc.
2000: Received Ph.D. in Agriculture from Hokkaido University
2002: Research Scientist, Honda R&D Co., Ltd.
2006: Research Scientist, National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences
2011: Head, Rice Applied Genomics Research Unit, National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences
2013: Professor, University of Tokyo (Concurrent Position)
Educational Activities
Graduate School:Applied Bioresource Sciences
Research Activities
Rice is cultivated all around the world and shows numerous morphological and physiological differences in the form of phenotypic variations. Some of these variations have been used as genetic resources to improve rice plants so that they better satisfy human needs. Phenotypic variations are considered to be genetically controlled by the collective function of a large number of genes on rice genomes. However, the genetic bases and biological functions of most of them are still unknown, which has prevented us from wider practical application of rice germplasms. We exploit useful phenotypic variations from a wide range of rice germplasms and clarify the genes involved with biological functions by aid of recent advances in genome information and technology. Also, we try to develop new breeding materials and propose more effective breeding methodologies.
1) Yamamoto et al. (2009) Towards the understanding of complex traits in rice: Substantially or superficially? DNA Research 16:141-154
2) Yamamoto et al. (2010) Fine definition of the pedigree haplotypes of closely related rice cultivars by means of genome-wide discovery of single-nucleotide polymorphisms. BMC Genomics 11:267.
3) Yonemaru et al. (2012) Genome-wide haplotype changes produced by artificial selection during modern rice breeding in Japan. PLoS ONE 7(3):e32982
4) Adachi et al. (2013) The mesophyll anatomy enhancing CO2 diffusion is a key trait for improving rice photosynthesis. Journal of Experimental Botany 64:1061-72
5) Takai et al. (2013) A natural variant of NAL1, selected in high-yield rice breeding programs, pleiotropically increases photosynthesis rate. Scientific Reports 3:2149
Other Activities
The Japanese Society of Breeding
Future Plan
Through our current research activities, we aim to establish a consecutive road map from the genome information of germplasms to actual crop breeding.
Messages to Students
We welcome your enthusiasm to tackle food and environmental issues through rice genome information.