This Center aims to carry out research on aspects of biodiversity, coral reef ecology, the functional physiology of animals in coral reefs, applied plant science, the functional physiology of bioresources, and forest resource science. The Center consists of the Nishihara Station, Sesoko Station, and Iriomote Station. The Center has 12 professional members, two foreign visiting research fellows and five domestic visiting research fellows. Visiting scientists and students are also welcome.
The faculty members of the center have conducted researches on structure and function of coral reef ecosystems and rules underlying them; reproductive cycles, sexual compositions, and factors and mechanisms governing these properties in reef fishes; current status and formation process of biodiversity, and effective methods to detect, utilize and reproduce bioresources under the subtropical insular environment. Also, the Center began new projects to explore effective methods for recovery of coral reefs and mangroves that were damaged from local human activities, as well as from global climatic changes. In 2009, this Center has been combined with Center of Molecular Biosciences (COMB), and the research area has been extended to include functional genomics, molecular biotechnology, bioremediation, immunobiology and molecular microbiology with increase in the number of staff members.
Members of the headquarters are conducting researches on histories and mechanisms of diversification of the lower vertebrates in East-Southeast Asia and on functional morphology of subtropical plants.
The headquarters provides equipment for preparation and observation of specimens, rearing experiments, and genetic analyses, facilitating biodiversity research and education with domestic and foreign researchers.
The Sesoko Station owns modern large-scale fish tanks, and it is well equipped with instruments for marine science, Many foreign and domestic researchers and students visit this Station to conduct ecological and physiological studies of marine organisms. Training courses for students by the University of the Ryukyus and various other organizations are also frequently operated in this Station.
The Iriomote Station, located on Iriomote Island, is surrounded by a broad-leaf evergreen forest and mangrove forest. This Station includes three research sections: Applied Plant Sciences, Forest Resource Science and Section of Functional Physiology of Bioresources. This station has been playing a central role as a research base or station for the study of mangrove ecosystems. The facilities of this Station, including the dormitory, are available to foreign and domestic researchers and students. The Iriomote Station conducts intensive courses for undergraduate and graduate students. The Station is also involved in various training courses organized by Japan International Cooperation Agency, the Association for International Cooperation of Agriculture and Forestry, etc.
Center of Molecular Biosciences (COMB)
The Center of Molecular Biosciences (COMB) is dedicated to higher education and the promotion of the research fields of biosciences at cellular and molecular levels. All instruments and facilities are, in principle, available for use by students and faculty members from every school and department on campus and also outside research community. To achieve educational and research excellence, our faculty members and students have been enthusiastically collaborating. In 2009, a new research project “analysis for genomic invasion mechanism of movable elements and development of general standard vector using transporter" has been launched.