Institute of Vegetable and Floriculture Science, NARO

Genetic Engineering Unit

The Genetic Engineering Unit is pursuing research on molecular breeding such as genetic recombination to develop cultivars and lines corresponding to the consumer needs. We are especially promoting our efforts aimed at the practical usage of the "blue chrysanthemum". One of the most important goals in flower breeding is to develop new flower colors. In Japan, chrysanthemum is an industrially important flower that accounts for about 40% of the cut flower production. However there is no blue flower color so far. Therefore, cultivation of "blue chrysanthemum" for practical usage is expected to create new demands diversifying the consumption view of chrysanthemum. We have been working on the development of "blue chrysanthemum" for more than 10 years. By introducing a blueing gene derived from other flower plant species into chrysanthemum, we have successfully created a recombinant line with flower color that changed to purple. Currently, we are trying to improve the bluish color. In addition, since associated wild species of chrysanthemum which has ability to hybridize are growing wild within Japan, we are also developing a sterilization technology aiming to reduce risk of contaminating the biodiversity due to hybridization. We will integrate these technologies and aim for the practical usage of "blue chrysanthemum" by genetic recombination. In addition, we are also working on the development of new breeding techniques such as the adaptation of viral vector and genome editing technology. Through these efforts, we are hoping to create new innovations in the flower industry and contribute our efforts to society.


Unit Leader

Ryutaro AIDA

Unit Members

Naonobu NODA

Katsutomo SASAKI