University of Tsukuba


The University of Tsukuba is the anchor institution of Tsukuba Science City — Japan’s premier science-and-technology hub, which is a convenient 45-minute train ride northeast of central Tokyo. The University encompasses 29 national research institutions and more than 200 private sector research institutions. The University operates on the principle that it is open to all.

The University of Tsukuba aims to cross the borders that separate a variety of organizations, such as those between nations, research institutions, and fields of study. The University’s network is expanding globally. In particular, the University has entered into seven campus-in-campus arrangements with universities in six countries and regions, thereby promoting close cooperative relationships between education and research. At present, the University hosts more than 3,000 study abroad students from more than 100 countries and regions of origin.

Collaboration is essential in order to achieve high-quality outcomes with limited resources. As an example, the University is actively engaged in an exchange of talent and joint research that goes beyond the conventional university framework at nationwide joint-use institutes that encompass the four fields of computational science, marine science, plant science, and plasma research.

The joint research being conducted with the research facilities within Tsukuba Science City is expanding into drug development, robotics engineering, space medicine, plant breeding, astrophysics, and sleep science, as well as a wide variety of interdisciplinary areas, leading to a greater number of superior research outcomes than can be achieved on a university scale alone.

The University is also proactively engaging in the support of venture corporations. Thus far, a total of 118 companies have originated from the University of Tsukuba, including Cyberdyne, Inc. All of these companies give back to society through their research outcomes.

A frontrunner in university reform in Japan, the University is creating a flexible education and research structure as well as a university system to meet the needs of the next generation. It aspires to be a comprehensive university, continuously meeting new challenges and developing new areas. The foremost mission of a university is to provide an environment that allows future leaders to realize their full potential. The University of Tsukuba gives students the opportunity develop their individuality and skills through an education that is backed by cutting-edge research.

The University of Tsukuba retains sole responsibility for content. © 2018 The University of Tsukuba.

1 April 2017 - 31 March 2018

Region: Global
Subject/journal group: All

The table to the right includes counts of all research outputs for University of Tsukuba published between 1 April 2017 - 31 March 2018 which are tracked by the Nature Index.

Hover over the donut graph to view the FC output for each subject. Below, the same research outputs are grouped by subject. Click on the subject to drill-down into a list of articles organized by journal, and then by title.

Note: Articles may be assigned to more than one subject area.

211 34.88

Outputs by subject (FC)

Subject AC FC
Chemistry 40 15.93
Physical Sciences 128 8.67
Life Sciences 44 9.45
Earth & Environmental Sciences 8 2.32

Highlight of the month

Rooting out plant responses

© Janine Lamontagne/E+/Getty

© Janine Lamontagne/E+/Getty

Legumes respond to nitrogen in their soil environment by putting the brakes on a symbiotic partnership with soil bacteria that helps produce more of the element.

A University of Tsukuba-led study revealed a key genetic pathway behind this response — a finding that could help enhance crop yield and reduce fertilizer use for those who want to breed soybeans and other commercially important legumes.

Tsukuba researchers raised the legume Lotus japonicas, a popular model plant for genome studies, in cabinets with a bacterium that invades the plant roots and forms bulb-like nodules. This bacterium then converts nitrogen from the air into a form usable by plants in exchange for energy from its legume host.

By exposing the plants to a chemical that modifies their DNA, the researchers pinpointed a mutant gene, NRSYM1, in which the nitrogen-fixing mechanism is defective. This gene, the authors showed, induces the production of a peptide that quells the formation of new root nodules when nitrogen is already abundant in the soil.

Supported content

  1. Nature Communications 9, 499 (2018) doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-02831-x

View the article on the Nature Index

See more research highlights from University of Tsukuba

More research highlights from University of Tsukuba

1 April 2017 - 31 March 2018

International vs. domestic collaboration by FC

  • 28.83% Domestic
  • 71.17% International

Note: Hover over the graph to view the percentage of collaboration.

Top 10 domestic collaborators by FC (118 total)

  • University of Tsukuba, Japan
  • Domestic institution
  1. National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS), Japan (9.83)
  2. National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan (9.77)
  3. The University of Tokyo (UTokyo), Japan (9.50)
  4. Kyushu University, Japan (5.94)
  5. RIKEN, Japan (4.94)
  6. Kyoto University, Japan (4.43)
  7. Tohoku University, Japan (3.83)
  8. Kanazawa University (KU), Japan (3.65)
  9. Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech), Japan (2.88)
  10. Keio University, Japan (2.59)

Note: Collaboration is determined by the fractional count (FC), which is listed in parentheses.

Affiliated joint institutions and consortia

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