Organization and Activities of RCTMR

 To build up an excellent research center for the utilization of thermotolerant microbes in the fields of fermentation, biomass resourcing, bioremediation, and diagnosis and prevention of infectious diseases, we are trying to establish a novel research and study field with an integrated viewpoint consisting of fermentative, environmental, and pathogenic microbiology, and to undertake pioneering studies and education.

  In this center, we strengthen connections with foreign researchers and research organizations, as well as with many researchers from industrial research institutes, in order to promote international collaboration and also collaboration between academia and the private sector.  Thus, we are actively undertaking research and education with the following staff members and research themes in order to reach our goals.


Director: Kazunobu Matsushita (Professor, Faculty of Agriculture)

Vice-director: Ken Maeda (Professor, Joint Faculty of Veterinary Medicine)


[Division of Fermentation Microorganisms]

Members: Hisashi Hoshida (Chair), Toshiharu Yakushi (Vice-Chair), Tomoyuki Kosaka, Kazunobu Matsushita, Mamoru Yamada, Naoya Kataoka, Rinji Akada, and Hidetaka Ogino.


1) Research and Development of Thermotolerant Fermentative Microbes, and Creation of New Microbial Industries fitted to Southeast Asian and also to Domestic Companies under Global Warming

  (Members: K. Matsushita, M. Yamada, T. Yakushi, H. Ogino, & N. Kataoka)


 • Establishment of high-temperature oxidative fermentation system with thermotolerant acetic acid bacteria

 • Analysis of molecular mechanism of thermotolerance of thermotolerant, fermentative microbes and comparative genomic analysis of mesophilic and thermotolerant microbes

 • Capacity building of fermentative microbes by energetic, metabolic engineering and its application

 • Establishment of fermentation systems applicable for Southeast Asia by using thermotolerant, fermentative microbes


2) Research and Development on Bioethanol Production System using Thermotolerant or Semi-thermophilic Fermentative Microbes

   (Members: M. Yamada, R. Akada, H. Hoshida, K. Fujii, T. Kosaka)


 • Establishment of high-temperature ethanol fermentation systems using thermotolerant yeasts or bacteria

 • Exploration of cellulose biomass-degrading microbes and their application for bioethanol production

 • Establishment of bioethanol production systems with Kluyveromyces marxianus capable of growing at high temperature      

 • Development of experimental procedures of model yeast or expression system of useful materials and proteins


[Division of Environmental Microorganisms]

Members: Tsuyoshi Imai (Chair), Osami Misumi (Vice-Chair), Masahiro Fujishima, Kazuhira Yokoyama, Katsushiko Fujii, and Yukiko Yanagi


3) Research and Development on Bioremediation and Potential Biomass Utilization by Thermotolerant or Semi-thermophilic Microbes

 (Members: K. Yokoyama, T. Imai, K. Fujii, O. Misumi, & Y. Yanagi)            

 •  Micro-algal production of valuable bioactive compounds

 •  Recovery of energy and useful materials from unutilizable biomass by semi-thermophilic microbes

 •  Bioremediation including soil and water purification by thermotolerant or semi-thermophilic microbes.

4) Preservation of Natural Ecosystem by utilizing Intracellular and Intercellular Symbiotic Microorganisms

              (Members: K. Yokoyama, M. Fujishima, and O. Misumi)


 • Elucidation of mechanisms needed for establishment of intracellular and plant-microbe symbioses

 • Development of plant production system by utilization of plant-microbe interaction

 • Preservation of aquatic ecosystem by using special microbes having intracellular symbionts


[Division of Pathogenic Microorganisms]

Member: Ken Maeda (Chair), Shin-ichi Ito (Vice-Chair), Masahisa Watarai, Hiroyuki Azakami, Hiroshi Sato, Kazuo Nishigaki, Takashi Shimizu, Akihiro Hasegawa, and Tsuyoshi Tanabe


5) Early Stage Diagnosis and Prevention of Infectious Diseases Caused by Intracellular Parasitic Microorganisms (Member: S. Ito, M. Watarai, H. Azakami, T. Shimizu, A. Hasegawa)


 •  Identification of causal pathogens of vegetable diseases occurring in the moderate- and high-temperature areas and development of genetic diagnosis methods to identify the pathogens

 • Molecular mechanisms of adhesion and colonization (biofilm formation) of pathogenic bacteria to the hosts and development of control technologies of the biofilm formation

 • Elucidation of infection mechanisms of intracellular parasitic bacteria and establishment of preventive measures against their infection

 • Mechanism for immune response towards bacterial infection

 • Immune-related diseases caused by destruction of infection protective system


6) Analysis of Transmission Routes of Zoonotic Diseases and Prevention of the Diseases

  (Member: K. Maeda, M. Watarai, H. Sato, K. Nishigaki)


 • Elucidation of transmission routes and infection mechanisms of trans -border emerging zoonotic diseases

 • Investigation of distribution of fruit bats as natural hosts of many pathogenic viruses to human in Southeast Asia

 • Elucidation of infection mechanisms of zoonotic bacteria, Brucella, Listeria, and Salmonella