Functional Food Material and Agrobio Research Unit


Functional Food Material and Agrobio Research Unit

Creation of Food Safety and Security Science for Farms and Human Bodies

Considering the rise in the social issues stemming from decreases in crop productivity due to extreme weather and increases in lifestyle diseases, this research unit engages in a variety of research projects concerning “functionality” of “functional foods,” which are expected to ameliorate and prevent such issues. Fully taking into account the wide-ranging dynamic phases—from micro to macro—of agricultural, livestock, and marine products and their processed food materials, the following three research groups have been established with a view toward developing ground-breaking crop production engineering and functional foods that truly work on humans.

Realization of stable food prpduction and a healthy society

Research Groups

Agrobio Research Group

In collaboration with the Graduate Schools of Agricultural Science, Science, and Engineering, this research group is searching for stress tolerance improver(s), and a novel plant activators useful for increases of plant biomass as well as elucidation of their molecular mechanisms, undertaking plant physiological analysis regarding organelles’ functions in Arabidopsis and green vegetables, and developing a new breeds valuable not only for food but also for biorefinery resource in rice and wheat.


KANAMARU Kengo (Associate Professor), UNO Yuichi ( Professor), and TAOKA Ken-ichiro (Associate Professor)

Functional Food Material Intestinal Dynamics Research Group

Using a small intestine model made up of two layers of human-intestinal-epithelium-derived cultured cells and immunocompetent cells and a human intestinal bacterial microbiota model made possible by single-bath continual anaerobic culture, this group efficiently evaluates functionality of food materials prior to human intervention studies. The group works in collaboration with the Research Center for Food Safety and Security, Kobe University Graduate School of Agricultural Science, the Division of Gastroenterology, Kobe University School of Medicine, and other organizations.


MIZUNO Masashi (Professor), SHIRAI Yasuhito (Professor), FUKUDA Itsuko (Assistant Professor), and SASAKI Daisuke (Assistant Professor)

Functional Food Material Disposition Research Group

To prevent lifestyle diseases, this research group evaluates various aspects of functionality and safety of food ingredients by cultured cell experiments, animal studies, and human intervention studies. It also analyzes the bioavailability of the active compound.
In addition, this group evaluates the efficacy of food ingredients during processing of agricultural, livestock, and marine products for development of the foods for specified health use and the foods with functional claims.


ASHIDA Hitoshi (Professor), HONDA Kazuhisa (Professor), HASHIMOTO Takashi (Associate Professor), and YAMASHITA Yoko (Associate Professor)

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