Nagano, Atsushi



Graduate School of Media and Governance (Shonan Fujisawa)


Project Associate Professor (Non-tenured)


Papers 【 Display / hide

  • Combination of genetic analysis and ancient literature survey reveals the divergence of traditional Brassica rapa varieties from Kyoto, Japan

    Kawakatsu Y., Sakamoto T., Nakayama H., Kaminoyama K., Igarashi K., Yasugi M., Kudoh H., Nagano A.J., Yano K., Kubo N., Notaguchi M., Kimura S.

    Horticulture Research (Horticulture Research)  8 ( 1 )  2021.12

    ISSN  20527276

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    Since ancient times, humans have bred several plants that we rely on today. However, little is known about the divergence of most of these plants. In the present study, we investigated the divergence of Mibuna (Brassica rapa L. subsp. nipposinica L. H. Bailey), a traditional leafy vegetable in Kyoto (Japan), by combining genetic analysis and a survey of ancient literature. Mibuna is considered to have been bred 200 years ago from Mizuna, another traditional leafy vegetable in Kyoto. Mibuna has simple spatulate leaves, whereas Mizuna has characteristic serrated leaves. The quantitative trait loci (QTL) and gene expression analyses suggested that the downregulation of BrTCP15 expression contributed to the change in the leaf shape from serrated to simple spatulate. Interestingly, the SNP analysis indicated that the genomic region containing the BrTCP15 locus was transferred to Mibuna by introgression. Furthermore, we conducted a survey of ancient literature to reveal the divergence of Mibuna and found that hybridization between Mizuna and a simple-leaved turnip might have occurred in the past. Indeed, the genomic analysis of multiple turnip cultivars showed that one of the cultivars, Murasakihime, has almost the same sequence in the BrTCP15 region as Mibuna. These results suggest that the hybridization between Mizuna and turnip has resulted in the establishment of Mibuna.

  • Relationship between gene regulation network structure and prediction accuracy in high dimensional regression

    Okinaga Y., Kyogoku D., Kondo S., Nagano A.J., Hirose K.

    Scientific Reports (Scientific Reports)  11 ( 1 )  2021.12

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    The least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (lasso) and principal component regression (PCR) are popular methods of estimating traits from high-dimensional omics data, such as transcriptomes. The prediction accuracy of these estimation methods is highly dependent on the covariance structure, which is characterized by gene regulation networks. However, the manner in which the structure of a gene regulation network together with the sample size affects prediction accuracy has not yet been sufficiently investigated. In this study, Monte Carlo simulations are conducted to investigate the prediction accuracy for several network structures under various sample sizes. When the gene regulation network is a random graph, a sufficiently large number of observations are required to ensure good prediction accuracy with the lasso. The PCR provided poor prediction accuracy regardless of the sample size. However, a real gene regulation network is likely to exhibit a scale-free structure. In such cases, the simulation indicates that a relatively small number of observations, such as N= 300 , is sufficient to allow the accurate prediction of traits from a transcriptome with the lasso.

  • Mating system evolution and genetic structure of diploid sexual populations of Cyrtomium falcatum in Japan

    Imai R., Tsuda Y., Ebihara A., Matsumoto S., Tezuka A., Nagano A.J., Ootsuki R., Watano Y.

    Scientific Reports (Scientific Reports)  11 ( 1 )  2021.12

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    Evolution of mating systems has become one of the most important research areas in evolutionary biology. Cyrtomium falcatum is a homosporous fern species native to eastern Asia. Two subspecies belonging to a sexual diploid race of C. falcatum are recognized: subsp. littorale and subsp. australe. Subspecies littorale shows intermediate selfing rates, while subsp. australe is an obligate outcrosser. We aimed to evaluate the process of mating system evolution and divergence for the two subspecies using restriction site associated DNA sequencing (RAD-seq). The results showed that subsp. littorale had lower genetic diversity and stronger genetic drift than subsp. australe. Fluctuations in the effective population size over time were evaluated by extended Bayesian skyline plot and Stairway plot analyses, both of which revealed a severe population bottleneck about 20,000 years ago in subsp. littorale. This bottleneck and the subsequent range expansion after the LGM appear to have played an important role in the divergence of the two subspecies and the evolution of selfing in subsp. littorale. These results shed new light on the relationship between mating system evolution and past demographic change in fern species.

  • Maintaining higher leaf photosynthesis after heading stage could promote biomass accumulation in rice

    Honda S., Ohkubo S., San N.S., Nakkasame A., Tomisawa K., Katsura K., Ookawa T., Nagano A.J., Adachi S.

    Scientific Reports (Scientific Reports)  11 ( 1 )  2021.12

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    Leaf photosynthetic rate changes across the growing season as crop plants age. Most studies of leaf photosynthesis focus on a specific growth stage, leaving the question of which pattern of photosynthetic dynamics maximizes crop productivity unanswered. Here we obtained high-frequency data of canopy leaf CO2 assimilation rate (A) of two elite rice (Oryza sativa) cultivars and 76 inbred lines across the whole growing season. The integrated A value after heading was positively associated with crop growth rate (CGR) from heading to harvest, but that before heading was not. A curve-smoothing analysis of A after heading showed that accumulated A at > 80% of its maximum (A80) was positively correlated with CGR in analyses of all lines mixed and of lines grouped by genetic background, while the maximum A and accumulated A at ≤ 80% were less strongly correlated with CGR. We also found a genomic region (~ 12.2 Mb) that may enhance both A80 and aboveground biomass at harvest. We propose that maintaining a high A after heading, rather than having high maximum A, is a potential target for enhancing rice biomass accumulation.

  • H3K27me3 demethylases alter HSP22 and HSP17.6C expression in response to recurring heat in Arabidopsis

    Yamaguchi N., Matsubara S., Yoshimizu K., Seki M., Hamada K., Kamitani M., Kurita Y., Nomura Y., Nagashima K., Inagaki S., Suzuki T., Gan E.S., To T., Kakutani T., Nagano A.J., Satake A., Ito T.

    Nature Communications (Nature Communications)  12 ( 1 )  2021.12

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    Acclimation to high temperature increases plants’ tolerance of subsequent lethal high temperatures. Although epigenetic regulation of plant gene expression is well studied, how plants maintain a memory of environmental changes over time remains unclear. Here, we show that JUMONJI (JMJ) proteins, demethylases involved in histone H3 lysine 27 trimethylation (H3K27me3), are necessary for Arabidopsis thaliana heat acclimation. Acclimation induces sustained H3K27me3 demethylation at HEAT SHOCK PROTEIN22 (HSP22) and HSP17.6C loci by JMJs, poising the HSP genes for subsequent activation. Upon sensing heat after a 3-day interval, JMJs directly reactivate these HSP genes. Finally, jmj mutants fail to maintain heat memory under fluctuating field temperature conditions. Our findings of an epigenetic memory mechanism involving histone demethylases may have implications for environmental adaptation of field plants.

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