University of Tsukuba


The University of Tsukuba is located in the suburbs of Tokyo and is at the heart of Tsukuba Science City —Japan’s largest “science city,” which has 29 national research institutes and about 150 private research organizations. 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 ten campus-in-campus arrangements with universities in eight countries and regions, thereby promoting close cooperative relationships between education and research. At present, the University hosts approximately 2,400 study abroad students from more than 110 countries and regions.

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 Research and Development Centers are the part of the University’s quest to pursue research and innovation that result in benefits for society. Externally funded, seven centers are newly established as industry-university-government partnerships for joint research in areas of high demand from the community.

The University is also proactively engaging in the support of venture corporations. Thus far, a total of 144 companies have originated from the University of Tsukuba, including Cyberdyne, Inc.

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 gives students the opportunity to develop their individuality and skills through an education that is backed by cutting-edge research.

The University of Tsukuba retains sole responsibility for content. © 2020 The University of Tsukuba.

1 March 2019 - 29 February 2020

Region: Global
Subject/journal group: All

The table to the right includes counts of all research outputs for University of Tsukuba published between 1 March 2019 - 29 February 2020 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.

Count Share
244 53.32

Outputs by subject (Share)

Subject Count Share
Physical Sciences 138 22.64
Life Sciences 58 12.32
Earth & Environmental Sciences 18 3.51
Chemistry 57 19.85

Highlight of the month

Microbe swallows other cells alive



In a discovery that goes against textbook biology, a marine microbe has been found that can engulf other cells.

The ability to engulf entire cells by a process known as phagocytosis was thought to be restricted to eukaryotes—the cells of which contain membrane-bound structures such as the nucleus.

But in a scientific first, a team from the University of Tsukuba has discovered a shape-shifting bacterium with amoeba-like movements that can devour other bacteria and algae, enclosing the prey cells in specific compartments for further digestion.

Genetic analysis indicates that the Pacman-like engulfment in this microbe evolved independently of cell ingestion in other organisms. Still, this primitive phagocytosis provides support for the hypothesis that eukaryotic cells originated from one prokaryote scarfing down another.

The Tsukuba team named the unusual microbe after a hungry giant from Palaun mythology since they found it in the waters off Palau, in the western Pacific Ocean.

Supported content

  1. Nature Communications 10, 5529 (2019). doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-13499-2

View the article on the Nature Index

See more research highlights from University of Tsukuba

More research highlights from University of Tsukuba

1 March 2019 - 29 February 2020

International vs. domestic collaboration by Share

  • 39.79% Domestic
  • 60.21% International

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

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

Affiliated joint institutions and consortia

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