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Our vision

Designing the Earth’s future with biodiversity science


 The earth is home to many forms of life. Ecosystems are constituted not only by birds that feast our eyes in our gardens, large mammals on the savanna and the diverse flora of rainforests, but also by a variety of insects, fungi, bacteria and protists. Passing this biodiversity on to future generations is one of the major challenges of humanity in the 21st century.

Biodiversity is not an object to be unilaterally protected by humankind. The biodiversity, a wide variety of organisms, supports our existence as well as our comfortable life. The development of ecology, genomics and information science allows us to obtain a vast amount of information on biodiversity. Such emerging scientific investigations have highlighted the crucial roles of biodiversity in the sustainable food supply and the stable global environment.

We shed new light on blessings brought by biodiversity and ecosystems based on interdisciplinary science. Our aim is to diagnose and restore biological functions of degraded ecosystems. Based on the integration of ecology, genomics, microbiology, and informatics, we evaluate and design networks of species with diverse biological functions. The technology of maximizing ecosystem-level functions and stability is applicable to the sustainable management of agroecosystems and aquaculture systems, adding new scientific platforms to the “portfolio” of scientific solutions for global environmental issues. 

- Hirokazu Toju -

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​​Management members

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​Hirokazu Toju, Ph.D.

​Founder and Chief Scientific Officer (CSO)

Hirokazu Toju founded Sunlit Seedlings based on his scientific research performed in Kyoto University, wherein he holds a position as an associate professor. He has led interdisciplinary projects integrating genomics, ecology, microbiology and informatics to uncover entangled webs of species interactions in ecosystems. He has also explored scientific platforms for diagnosing, managing and restoring ecosystem-level functions in various types of terrestrial and aquatic environments.
He previously worked as a visiting scholar of Stanford University, a Hakubi fellow of Kyoto University, a PRESTO researcher of Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), and Director of Ecological Society of Japan.
His awards include The Young Scientists’ Prize by the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (2020) and Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP) Award (2019).

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​​Sota Ishikawa, Ph.D.


My research activities are primarily focused on overcoming the methodological and computational limitations of large-scale data analysis in the coming era of big "omics" data. My current mission as CEO of Sunlit Seedings ltd. is to boost the application of biotechnology and bioinformatics knowledge towards the establishment of a sustainable global ecosystem.

2015 University of Tsukuba, PhD in Evolutionary Biology
~2016 Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Tsukuba
~2019 JSPS Research Fellow(PD), the University of Tokyo
~2020 Postdoctoral Researcher, Institut Pasteur
~2022 R&D Manager, Sunlit Seedings ltd.

​​Yukiko Kaimori


Yukiko Kaimori founded Sunlit Seedlings with Toju Hirokazu, Sota Ishikawa, and others in 2020. Before that, she worked as the general manager in the real estate investment division of General Electric Company (GE REAL ESTATE), where she managed the assets of $3.8 billion. She engaged in organizational management, market and financial analysis, and strategic planning. As an ombudsperson, she contributed to the company’s compliance and integrity.

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​​Masahiro Shinohara

Outside Director

Masahiro Shinohara joined KYOTO-iCAP in April 2021. He has various experiences in creating new businesses based on new technologies. Prior to joining KYOTO-iCAP, he engaged in providing consulting services such as business strategy, new business development, business due diligence, with his customers in chemical and healthcare industries at Arthur D. Little Japan. Before Arthur D. Little, he worked for Teijin Limited at chemical product business development, where he was responsible for acquiring new customers in Japan, and overseas and accelerating investment in new production lines. He holds a master degree from the Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University.


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Takeshi Osawa, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Tokyo Metropolitan University

Takashi Shirouzu Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Mie University

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Kenta Tanaka, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, University of Tsukuba
Faculty of Life and Environmental Sciences

Kengo Fuse

Researcher/Director of Kyushu Open University

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Takaaki Nishida, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Kyoto Sangyo University
Environmental policy and planning

​​Company Profile

​​Company name

​Sunlit Seedlings Ltd.


Head Office:
17 Kamiadachi, Sakyo, Kyoto JAPAN

Research Laboratory:

Ritsumeikan BKC Incubator 204, 1-1-1 Nojihigashi, Kusatsu, Shiga JAPAN



​​January 15, 2020

Representative Director

Sota Ishikawa

Financial institution

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation Kyoto Branch

Our business 

Consulting based on diagnoses of biological communities and ecosystems
Development and development support of products and production systems utilizing biological functions
Design and management of sustainable food production systems
Formulation and implementation of strategies to improve the global environmen

The o​rigin of  company name

The company name reflects our enthusiasm for shedding light on budding interdisciplinary science and for designing the Earth’s future.

Our philosophy

Design sustainable global ecosystems with biodiversity science.

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