Lisianthus (Eustoma grandiflorum) is a major cut flower in Japan and ranks fifth in terms of Japanese flower production. About 80% of improved cultivars of lisianthus in the world were developed in Japan. The seeds of cultivars produced mainly by Japanese seed and seedling companies are supplied to the world flower market such as Asia, Europe, Latin America etc. and cut flowers are eventually distributed worldwide. Hence it is important to breed cultivars with high competitiveness internationally. Therefore, we are engaged in the development of DNA markers linked to such important traits such as early and late flowering, disease resistance etc. which may lead to the development of improved cultivars. We also aim to establish a comprehensive linkage map of lisianthus to facilitate accurate and efficient breeding.
In recent years, the demand for cut flowers of dahlia has been increasing. Although it is a new promising cut flower which has increased its share annually, its flower vase life is short compared to other cut flowers which has become a big disadvantage. The development of dahlia cultivars with genetically long vase life is highly desirable among dahlia growers, market purchasers and consumers. Therefore, in addition to developing useful breeding cultivars with long vase life, we also aim to analyze the genetic basis of flower longevity of dahlia.
Mutations have made great contribution to the improvement and diversification of flower's ornamental traits. Therefore, using a transposon which is one of the major endogenous mutagens, we aim to identify genes responsible for flower shape, color, pattern, and to elucidate chemistry of pigment, which plays an important role in improving ornamental quality of torenia, camellia etc. Furthermore, we will also develop useful varieties with excellent ornamental properties.