Starting year 2024

Meijyo University
Faculty of Agriculture, Laboratory of Crop Science
Assistant Professor

Research fields

Crop Science
Plant Genetics and Breeding
Plant Physiology

Research Interests

Leaf hydrophobicity
Gas film
Gene mapping

Professional Memberships

Crop Science Society Of Japan
Japanese Society of Breeding

Main research topics

When a superhydrophobic leaf such as a rice leaf is submerged, an air layer called a gas film is formed around the leaf. Upon submergence, the gas film confers flood tolerance to the plant by enhancing CO2/O2 gas exchange and enabling underwater photosynthesis/respiration. The leaf of Kinmaze (normal rice variety) had many wax crystals deposited on the surface and around the papillae, while the leaf of drp mutant, which indicates the phenotype of lost gas film, had significantly less deposition of wax crystals. Underwater photosynthesis by the leaf blade was quantified using an oxygen electrode. Along with the post-submergence loss of gas film, a significant reduction in underwater photosynthesis from the pre-submergence level was observed in the drp7 mutant. When the drp7 mutant was tested for survival in a paddy field, it died 3 weeks after transplanting. Based on these results, it was concluded that long-term retention of gas film enhances underwater photosynthesis in rice plants, which contributes to flood tolerance. ④We conducted positional cloning using a 5,300 F2 population derived from crosses between the drp7 mutant (Japonica) and Kasalath (Indica). A single-base substitution was detected between the genomes of the drp7 mutant and Kinmaze in the OsHSD1 gene, which belongs to the Short chain Dehydrogenase/Reductase (SDR) family. Since the drp7 mutant was characterized by the loss of its gas film, we named the candidate gene Leaf Gas Film1 (LGF1). In order to identify which of wax components play important roles in gas film retention, we quantitatively compared the surface wax compositions in leaf blades of Kinmaze and the drp7 mutant. The drp7 mutant had lower levels of C (carbon number) 30:primary alcohol and higher levels of C30:aldehyde compared to Kinmaze, suggesting that LGF1 might be involved in the conversion of C30:aldehyde to C30:primary alcohol and that the balance between C30:primary alcohol and C30:aldehyde is extremely important for gas film retention in rice leaf blades.

Representative papers

Yusuke Kurokawa, Keisuke Nagai, Phung Danh Huan, Kousuke Shimazaki, Huangqi Qu, Yoshinao Mori, Yosuke Toda, Takeshi Kuroha, Nagao Hayashi, Saori Aiga, Jun-ichi Itoh, Astushi Yoshimura, Yuko Sasaki-Sekimoto, Hiroyuki Ohta, Mie Shimojima, AI Imran Malik, Ole Pedersen, Timothy David Colmer and Motoyuki Ashikari, “Rice leaf hydrophobicity and gas films are conferred by a wax synthesis gene (LGF1) and contribute to flood tolerance,” New Phytologist (2018) 218(4) 1558-1569


Yusuke Kurokawa, Tomonori Noda, Yoshiyuki Yamagata, Rosalyn B. Angeles-Shim, Hidehiko Sunohara, Kanako Uehara, Tomoyuki Furuta, Keisuke Nagai, Kshirod Kumar Jena, Hideshi Yasui, Atsushi Yoshimura, Motoyuki Ashikari and Kazuyuki Doi, “Construction of versatile SNP array for pyramiding useful genes of rice,” Plant Science (2016) 242 131-139

Research URL

researchmap https://researchmap.jp/kuro-yu


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