筑波大学下田臨海実験センターUniversity of Tsukuba

Ocean is the source of life and has given rise to biodiversity. To understand our planet and human beings, knowledge about marine organisms are essential. The 21st century is the era of life and environmental sciences. Shimoda Marine Research Center (SMRC), the center for the research and education of marine biology in University of Tsukuba, aims to explore the basic principles of life and interactions among organisms through education and research using both basic and advanced technologies on marine organisms.
Center News
March 26th, 2021
imageTwo students belonging to our center, Yasuto Hayashi-san (Wada Lab) and Aya Sakamoto-san (Sasakura Lab), were respectively awarded Graduate School Dean’s Award and Director’s Award for their studies in Master’s program.
⇒ Sasakura lab where she conducted her research
⇒ Wada lab where he conducted his research
March 20th, 2021
imageYasuhito Hayashi, a student at Shimoda Marine Research Center was awarded the Student Presentation Awards for his presentation in Symposium of Marine Biology organized by The Oceanographic Society of Japan. He presented the study on Cohesive strength of particles originated from marine phytoplankton.
⇒ Wada lab where he conducted his research
March 1st, 2021
imageA team lead by Prof. Kazuo Inaba at the Shimoda Marine Research Center, University of Tsukuba in collaboration with scientists from Osaka University, Tokyo Institute of Technology and Paul Scherrer Institute found a novel subunit “DYBLYP” of the ciliary molecular motor dynein in a tunicate and a unicellular green alga. They reported that DYBLYP is a dynein-associated photoreceptor protein that prevents ciliary acclimation to strong blue light. These results were published online in Science Advances.
⇒”A dynein-associated photoreceptor protein prevents ciliary acclimation to blue light”
⇒ University of Tsukuba Research News
⇒ Science Daily Science News
January 15th, 2021
imageAssist. Prof. Ben Harvey, Assist. Prof. Koetsu Kon, Assist. Prof. Sylvain Agostini, Assist. Prof. Shigeki Wada and Prof. Jason Hall-Spencer have found that future ocean acidification will have a profound effect in shaping the development of algal communities. Using a natural CO2 seep on Shikine Island, Japan, it was found that ocean acidification truncates the normal successional trajectories of communities, and will cause marine ecosystems to become highly simplified and dominated by turf algae. These findings highlight that without reducing atmospheric CO2 we may increasingly observe the loss of large algal habitats and the spread of fast-growing, small opportunistic species. This research was published in Global Change Biology on the 11th January 2021.
⇒University of Tsukuba research news
June 12th, 2020
image Profs. Jason Hall-Spencer and Kazuo Inaba published a collaborative research with Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences, Xiamen University, Monash University and University of Tasmania on the flagellar motility of unicellular green algae in the journal ’Nature Climate Change’.
Decreased motility of flagellated microalgae long-term acclimated to CO2-induced acidified waters.
⇒University of Tsukuba news article (in Japanese)
May 25th, 2020
imageAssociate Prof. Shunsuke Yaguchi, Post-doctoral fellow Junko Yaguchi, and Ph.D. Student Haruka Suzuki in Shimoda Marine Research Center, University of Tsukuba, have created a genome edited sea urchin strain. Using CRISPR-Cas9 system, they have knockout Pks1 gene, which is responsible for pigment synthesis, and have created albino sea urchins. This work was done in collaboration with researchers of National Institute of Genetics, Ochanomizu University, and Hiroshima University. This result is published in Current Biology.
⇒Journal site
⇒University of Tsukuba research topics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/urchin_lab
May 11th, 2020
textbookProfessors Kazuo Inaba and Jason Hall-Spencer (University of Plymouth) published the first English-language book 'Japanese Marine Life - A Practical Training Guide in Marine Biology’ from Springer Nature. This book is aimed to be a marine biology textbook for increasing foreign students to Japan, as well as introducing Japanese marine fauna and flora to students and researchers in marine biology. Teaching staff of SMRC, as well as marine biologists in Japanese marine stations, participate in this book as authors.
⇒ Japanese Marine Life - A Practical Training Guide in Marine Biology
April 27th, 2020
Newspapers from around Japan covered the research on going around Izu and at the Shikine CO2 seep.
April 21st, 2020
imageIn collaboration with researchers from the Universities of Palermo (Italy) and Plymouth (UK), Assist. Prof Sylvain Agostini, Assist. Prof. Ben Harvey, Assist. Prof. Shigeki Wada and Prof. Kazuo Inaba, recently published their research in the journal "Science of the Total Environment" on the effect of ocean acidification on corals and macroalgae and the cascading effects on the fish communities. The surveys conducted at the CO2 seep off the shore of Shikine Island, showed that increasing levels of CO2 lead to the loss of corals and macroalgae and an increase in turf algae. This shift from complex reefs to habitats dominated by opportunistic low-profile algae led to a 45% decrease of fish diversity, with a loss of coral-associated species and a rearrangement of feeding behaviour.
⇒Changes in fish communities due to benthic habitat shift under ocean acidification condition." Science of the Total Environment
⇒ University of Tsukuba research topics

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