Genetically Modified Organism Reseach Center

Functional Transgenic Crops Research Unit

Development of transgenic crops including health promoting ingredients or pharmaceuticals

 Targets of our unit are to generate health promoting functional transgenic crops by introducing functional peptides or proteins having functions such as anti-hypertensive or hypocholesterolemic activities, and to establish a production system for high-value products such as pharmaceuticals using transgenic crops as bioreactors. We have developed a rice-based allergy vaccine against Japanese cedar pollen allergy by introducing its modifi ed Cry j 1 and Cry j 2 antigens with reduced IgE reactivity. As one step to put this rice-based allergy vaccine to practical use, a clinical trial will be conducted using the pollinosis patients according to rules of GCP to examine safety and effi cacy of rice-based vaccines.
 To establish a system to enhance accumulation levels of recombinant products in transgenic rice seed, we are elucidating the network system of transcription factors that regulate seed protein genes. We also are developing targeting system (site directed integration) via homologous recombination at the highly transcriptionally active site of the desired target gene. Furthermore, we will solve the problems of gene silencing and ER stress that sometimes occur when recombinant proteins are highly expressed.

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    GM rice producing allergy vaccine against cedar pollen allergy

    (a) Cultivation of GM rice in closed field
    (b) Practical scheme

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    Strategy for high-level accumulation of valuable products in plant