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Ken Matsuoka Last modified date:2024.05.07

Professor / Division of Molecular Bioscience
Department of Bioscience and Biotechnology
Faculty of Agriculture

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Plant Molecular Cell Biology Group, Laboratory of Plant Nutrition .
Laboratory of Plant Nutrition .
Academic Degree
Doctor of Agriculture
Field of Specialization
Molecular Cell Biology, Biochemistry, Plant biotechnology
ORCID(Open Researcher and Contributor ID)
Total Priod of education and research career in the foreign country
Outline Activities
Researches on the synthesis, modification, transport, localization and degradation of proteins、glycans and complex carbohydrates in plant cells are conducting. Current topics of researches include the regulation mechanism of organelle differentiation, membrane protein localization and degradation under different nutritional conditions, characterization of transport signals, and regulation of protein glycosylation and a valuable glycan synthesis. In addition, researches on the production of valuable plants/crops using genetic engineering and/or environmental control are also conducting.
Research Interests
  • Molecular mechanism of protein and glycan synthesis, transport, localization and modification. Production of useful plants by genetic engineering and environmental control.
    keyword : secretory pathway, glycosylation, useful glycan, transport signal, organelle, genetic engineering, environmental control
    1991.04Protein localization, modification and degradation.
Academic Activities
1. Fumie Saito, Akiko Suyama, Takuji Oka, Takehiko Yoko-o, Ken Matsuoka, Yoshifumi Jigami, Yoh-ichi Shimma, Identification of novel peptidyl serine α-galactosyltransferase gene family in plants, J. Biol. Chem., 10.1074/jbc.M114.553933, 289, 20405-20420, 2014.06, In plants, serine residues in extensin, a cell wall protein, are glycosylated with O-linked galactose. However, the enzyme that is involved in the galactosylation of serine had not yet been identified. To identify the peptidyl serine O-α-galactosyltransferase (SGT), we chose Chlamydomonas reinhardtii as a model. We established an assay system for SGT activity using C. reinhardtii and Arabidopsis thaliana cell extracts. SGT protein was partially purified from cell extracts of C. reinhardtii and analyzed by tandem mass spectrometry to determine its amino acid sequence. The sequence matched the open reading frame XP_001696927 in the C. reinhardtii proteome database, and a corresponding DNA fragment encoding 748 amino acids (BAL63043) was cloned from a C. reinhardtii cDNA library. The 748-amino acid protein (CrSGT1) was produced using a yeast expression system, and the SGT activity was examined. Hydroxylation of proline residues adjacent to a serine in acceptor peptides was required for SGT activity. Genes for proteins containing conserved domains were found in various plant genomes, including A. thaliana and Nicotiana tabacum. The AtSGT1 and NtSGT1 proteins also showed SGT activity when expressed in yeast. In addition, knock-out lines of AtSGT1 and knockdown lines of NtSGT1 showed no or reduced SGT activity. The SGT1 sequence, which contains a conserved DXD motif and a C-terminal membrane spanning region, is the first example of a glycosyltransferase with type I membrane protein topology, and it showed no homology with known glycosyltransferases, indicating that SGT1 belongs to a novel glycosyltransferase gene family existing only in the plant kingdom..
2. Maiko Tasaki, Satoru Asatsuma, Ken Matsuoka, Monitoring protein turnover during phosphate starvation-dependent autophagic degradation using a photoconvertible fluorescent protein aggregate in tobacco BY-2 cells., Front. Plant Sci., doi: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00172, 5, 2014.04, [URL], We have developed a system for quantitative monitoring of autophagic degradation in transformed tobacco BY-2 cells using an aggregate-prone protein comprised of cytochrome b5 (Cyt b5) and a tetrameric red fluorescent protein (RFP). Unfortunately, this system is of limited use for monitoring the kinetics of autophagic degradation because the proteins synthesized before and after induction of autophagy cannot be distinguished. To overcome this problem, we developed a system using kikume green-red (KikGR), a photoconvertible and tetrameric fluorescent protein that changes its fluorescence from green to red upon irradiation with purple light. Using the fusion protein of Cyt b5 and KikGR together with a method for the bulk conversion of KikGR, which we had previously used to convert the Golgi-localized monomeric KikGR fusion protein, we were able to monitor both the growth and de novo formation of aggregates. Using this system, we found that tobacco cells do not cease protein synthesis under conditions of phosphate (Pi)-starvation. Induction of autophagy under Pi-starvation, but not under sugar- or nitrogen-starvation, was specifically inhibited by phosphite, which is an analog of Pi with a different oxidation number. Therefore, the mechanism by which BY-2 cells can sense Pi-starvation and induce autophagy does not involve sensing a general decrease in energy supply and a specific Pi sensor might be involved in the induction of autophagy under Pi-starvation..
3. Moses O. Abiodun, Ken Matsuoka, Evidence that Proliferation of Golgi Apparatus Depends on both de novo Generation from the Endoplasmic Reticulum and Formation from Pre-existing Stacks during the Growth of Tobacco BY-2 Cells., Plant Cell Physiol., 10.1093/pcp/pct014, 54, 4, 541-554, 2013.04, [URL], In higher plants, the numbers of cytoplasmic-distributed Golgi stacks differ based on function, age and cell type. It has not been clarified how the numbers are controlled, whether all the Golgi apparatus in a cell function equally and whether the increase in Golgi number is a result of the de novo formation from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) or fission of pre-existing stacks. A tobacco prolyl 4-hydroxylase (NtP4H1.1), which is a cis-Golgi-localizing type II membrane protein, was tagged with a photoconvertible fluorescent protein, mKikGR (monomeric Kikume green red), and expressed in tobacco bright yellow 2 (BY-2) cells. Transformed cells were exposed to purple light to convert the fluorescence from green to red. A time-course analysis after the conversion revealed a progressive increase in green puncta and a decrease in the red puncta. From 3 to 6 h, we observed red, yellow and green fluorescent puncta corresponding to pre-existing Golgi; Golgi containing both pre-existing and newly synthesized protein; and newly synthesized Golgi. Analysis of the number and fluorescence of Golgi at different phases of the cell cycle suggested that an increase in Golgi number with both division and de novo synthesis occurred concomitantly with DNA replication. Investigation with different inhibitors suggested that the formation of new Golgi and the generation of Golgi containing both pre-existing and newly synthesized protein are mediated by different machineries. These results and modeling based on quantified results indicate that the Golgi apparatuses in tobacco BY-2 cells are not uniform and suggest that both de novo synthesis from the ER and Golgi division contribute almost equally to the increase in proliferating cells..
4. Toyooka, K., Goto, Y., Asatsuma, S., Koizumi, M., Mitsui, T. and Matsuoka, K., A mobile secretory vesicle cluster involved in mass transport from the Golgi to plant cell exterior., Plant Cell, Apr;21(4):1212-29, 2009.04, Secretory proteins and extracellular glycans are transported to the extracellular space during cell growth. These materials are carried in secretory vesicles generated at the trans-Golgi network (TGN). Analysis of the mammalian post-Golgi secretory pathway demonstrated the movement of separated secretory vesicles in the cell. Using secretory carrier membrane protein 2 (SCAMP2) as a marker for secretory vesicles and tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) BY-2 cell as a model cell, we characterized the transport machinery in plant cells. A combination of analyses, including electron microscopy of quick-frozen cells and four-dimensional analysis of cells expressing fluorescent-tagged SCAMP2, enabled the identification of a clustered structure of secretory vesicles generated from TGN that moves in the cell and eventually fuses with plasma membrane. This structure was termed the secretory vesicle cluster (SVC). The SVC was also found in Arabidopsis thaliana and rice (Oryza sativa) cells and moved to the cell plate in dividing tobacco cells. Thus, the SVC is a motile structure involved in mass transport from the Golgi to the plasma membrane and cell plate in plant cells..
1. Ken Matsuoka, Monitoring mechanisms of Golgi proliferation in plant cells using photo-convertible fluorescence markers and a bulk conversion system, Schekman Symposium -38 years of SECs- , 2014.08.
Membership in Academic Society
  • The Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists
  • Japan Society for Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Agrochemistry
  • Japan Society for Cell Biology
  • The Japanese Biochemical Society
  • Japanese Society for Plant Cell and Molecular Biology
  • Japanese Society of Agricultural, Biological and Environmental Engineers and Scientists
  • The Japanese Society for Carbohydrate Research
  • American Society for Cell Biology
  • The American Society of Plant Biologists
  • 16th research paper award. The society for biotechnology, Japan.
    Development of Series of Gateway Binary Vectors, pGWBs, for Realizing Efficient Construction of Fusion Genes for Plant Transformation.  JBB Vol.104 No.1 p.34
    Tsuyoshi Nakagawa, Takayuki Kurose, Takeshi Hino, Katsunori Tanaka, Makoto Kawamukai, Yasuo Niwa, Kiminori Toyooka, Ken Matsuoka, Tetsuro Jinbo, and Tetsuya Kimura
Educational Activities
Graduate course lecture: Topics on the molecular mechanism of transport and storage of nutrients in plants.

Undegraduate lecture: "Plant physiology and biochemistry" and "Basic Biology".