【 Project 】
task01Soil Structure
01 Soil structure and microbes
To elucidate the mechanisms behind the robust functioning of soil microbes within soil structure, we will examine the relationship between physicochemical properties and soil microbes involved in N cycle. This is achieved by (i) identifying the key factors controlling soil aggregation and microbial functioning within aggregates, and (ii) building artificial aggregates that hold key soil functions.

Soil microorganisms driving carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) cycle are largely present in soil aggregate – the porous structure consisting of soil mineral particles and organic matter. The variation in the physical and chemical features of these microhabitats likely exert strong control on the difference in soil microbiome and in the dynamics of greenhouse gas emission. The current project aims to understand how soil structure control the stability and functioning of soil microbiome using three general approaches: (1) non-destructive characterization of physicochemical and microbial features of soil aggregates, (2) step-wise destruction and physical fractionation of soil aggregates, and (3) artificial soil aggregate synthesis.
02 New methods for exploiting the potential of soil microbiomes
To reveal soil microbial functions and utilize their full potential, advanced technologies play key roles. In this section, we will focus on new technologies such as single-cell genomics, long-read sequencing, bioinformatics, and network analysis.

Our group develops advanced technologies to clarify the diversity of soil microbial functions and the mechanism of soil microbiome stabilization, and to maximize their potential. In addition, we use these technologies to elucidate the entire picture of soil microorganisms.
Specifically, we are engaged in research on the following technologies:
- Long DNA sequencing
- Microdroplet
- Single-cell sequencing
- Bioinformatics
- Network analysis