We will achieve the SDGs through the effective utilization of plant genetic resources.
Modifying plant ingredients to provide safer and more secure food
We have succeeded in producing potatoes with reduced solanine, which causes bitterness. It is expected that “less poisonous potatoes” will be put to practical use.
Reducing Food Loss with Poison Free Potatoes
We are developing potatoes that do not sprout during storage that are suitable for food processing. This will lead a stable supply of potatoes and a longer shelf life. It also reduces food loss by reducing waste.
By suppressing potato germination using genome editing technology, it is expected that potatoes will last longer and provide a more stable supply of food.
Production of important crude drug ingredients using yeast to ensure the stable supply of medicinal ingredients.
Glycyrrhizin, which is contained in licorice, the most commonly prescribed herbal medicine in Chinese medicine, is low in content and requires several years to harvest. Licorice production is dependent on the collection of wild Glycyrrhiza plants, and this has caused a decrease in licorice reserves and an increase in desertification where it is harvested. However, our research group succeeded for the first time in the world in producing the yeast that produces glycyrrhizin by introducing biosynthetic genes from plants.
Since glycyrrhizin is a non-carbohydrate sweetener, it can help prevent metabolic syndrome. It is also expected to lead to the development of technologies for anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic drugs.
We will not deplete precious plant resources.
Licorice, which contains glycyrrhizin, is mainly dependent on imports from China. In addition, there is a growing trend to restrict its export. The production of glycyrrhizin by the recombinant yeast can help prevent overexploitation of native licorice and preserve the ecosystem.
We will contribute to the conservation of valuable plant resources by developing new production methods for useful plant ingredients that do not depend on collection and extraction from native plants.