Our Research

Lab. of Plant Ecology consists of two groups:

  • Physiological ecology group (supervisor Associate Prof. Hikosaka)
  • Evolutionary ecology group (supervisor Associate Prof. Sakai)

Physiological ecology group

Our ultimate goal is to clarify the mechanisms that determine plant matter production.

Keywords to our study are: "productive structure" and "response to growth environmemts".


*Analysis of pruductive structure

Matter production, CO2 fixation or photosythesis takes place in chloroplasts in plant leaf cells. Leaf photosynthesis is the summation of chloroplast photosynthesis, plant photosynthesis is the summation of leaf photosynthesis, and population photosynthesis is the summation of plant indivudual photosynethesis. A unique feature of our laboratory is that we investigate matter production at different levels; from chroloplast to population.

*Response to growth environments.

The growth enviroments for a plant may be fickle, changes taking place temporary and spatially. Immobile plants should be able to adapt themselves to new growth conditions, by modifying the sturcture and/or physiological functions. We are especially interested in the way plants adapt/adjust to changes in enviroments.


*Study themes

1988-1992 Nitrogen partitioning in a plant population (Hirose & Werger 1987; Hirose et al. 1988a; Hirose et al. 1989b; Anten et al. 2000)

1988-1993 Growth analysis of individual plants (Hirose 1988a, b; Hirose et al. 1988a, 1989b; Chiba & Hirose 1993)

1991- present Mechanisms that determine reproductive yield in annual herbs ( Sugiyama & Hirose 1991; Shitaka & Hirose 1993, 1998)

1994-present Analysis of multi-species system or competitve system (Hirose & Werger 1994, 1995; Anten & Hirose 1998, 1999, 2001; Hikosaka et al. 1999; Anten et al. 1998; Werger et al. 2002; Hikosaka & Hirose 2001; yasumura et al. 2002; Hikosaka et al.2001)

1996-present Matter production under elevated CO2 condition (Hirose et al. 1996a, b, 1997; Hirose & Bazzaz 1998; Nagashima et al. 2003; Ishizaki et al. 2003; Hikosaka & Hirose 1998)

1997-present Analysis of leaf photosynthesis (Hikosaka & Hirose 1988; Hikosaka 1997; Hikosaka et al. 1998b, 1999b; Hikosaka & Hirose 2000; Hikosaka et al. 2002; Hikosaka et al. 1998a; Kato et al. 2002a,b; Kato et al. 2003; oguchi et al. 2003)



Evolutionary ecology group

We aim to clarify evolutional meanings in ecological phenomena. The present main themes are strategies for evolutionary success.

* Theoretical and experimental analyses on the evolution of reproductive strategies in plants

* Population biology of plants

* Evolution of life history of plants


Please visit personal web pages for more information.


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