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 2,200 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, twelve 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 160 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. © 2021 The University of Tsukuba.

1 March 2020 - 28 February 2021

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 2020 - 28 February 2021 which are tracked by the Nature Index.

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

Count Share
243 52.26

Highlight of the month

How blood vessels feel the pressure



The role played by a key protein in the molecular cascade set off by the mechanical strain that blood exerts on vessel walls, which helps strength vessel walls, has been identified.

Since deficiencies in this process can cause atherosclerosis, hypertension and aortic aneurysms, a better knowledge of how cells in the vessel wall respond to physical stimuli could lead to new therapeutic interventions for vascular disease.

A University of Tsukuba–led team focused on a protein called thrombospondin-1 (Thbs1) that is found in the three-dimensional matrix surrounding blood vessels.

They found that rat smooth muscle cells secrete this protein in response to the bulging stretch forces induced by rushing blood flow. Thbs1 then forms complexes with sticky surface proteins on the cells. These anchor points help shuttle another protein, called YAP1, which is needed for stress-associated remodelling of the vessel wall.

Without Thbs1, blood vessels fail to respond properly to mechanical cues and vascular injury, ultimately becoming weakened and dysfunctional.

Supported content

  1. PNAS 117, 9896–9905 (2020). doi: 10.1073/pnas.1919702117

View the article on the Nature Index

See more research highlights from University of Tsukuba

More research highlights from University of Tsukuba

1 March 2020 - 28 February 2021

International vs. domestic collaboration by Share

  • 42.83% Domestic
  • 57.17% International

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

Top 10 domestic collaborators by Share (166 total)

  • University of Tsukuba, Japan
  • Domestic institution
  1. The University of Tokyo (UTokyo), Japan (19.54)
  2. National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS), Japan (14.41)
  3. National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan (12.57)
  4. RIKEN, Japan (12.37)
  5. Kyoto University, Japan (9.15)
  6. Kyushu University, Japan (5.41)
  7. Tohoku University, Japan (5.40)
  8. Osaka University, Japan (4.94)
  9. Hokkaido University, Japan (3.80)
  10. Okayama University, Japan (3.59)

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

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