Masaki Shimono

Postdoctoral Researcher


Masaki Shimono, Ph.D. 



BS, 1994, University of the Ryukyus

MS, 1996, Miyazaki University

Ph.D., 2008, Tsukuba University


Research Assistant, 1999-2008, National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences, Japan

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2008-2009, National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences, Japan

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2009-2014, Michigan State University, U.S.A.

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2014-2015, Meiji University, Japan

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2015, Research Institute for Biological Sciences (RIBS Okayama), Japan

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2018-present, Michigan State University, U.S.A.

Research Interests

In my current research, I am developing and using quantitative cell biology-based assays to define the role of the Arabidopsis actin cytoskeleton as a platform for defense signaling. Through this work, I have characterized both the virulence targeting of actin by the bacterial phytopathogen Pseudomonas syringae, as well as defined the role of actin during PTI and ETI signaling processes.


Lu, Y-J., Li, P., Corrion, A., Shimono, M., Yamauchi, R., Higaki, T. and Day, B. (201X). CPK3 is required for the regulation of pathogen-induced changes in actin cytoskeletal organization. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. U. S. A (Under review).

Zhang, B., Hua, Y., Huo, Y., Wang, J., Shimono, M., *Day, B., and *Ma, Q. (2017). TaADF4, an actin-depolymerizing factor from wheat, is required for resistance to the stripe rust pathogen Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici. In Press, Plant J. doi: 10.1111/tpj.13459 *co-corresponding authors.

Shimono, M., Higaki, T., Kaku, H., Shibuya, N., Hasezawa, S., and Day, B. (2016). Quantitative evaluation of stomatal cytoskeletal patterns during the activation of immune signaling in Arabidopsis thaliana. PLoS ONE 11 (7).

Shimono, M., Lu, YJ., Porter, K., Kvitko, BH., Henty-Ridilla, J., Creason, A., He, SY., Chang JH., Staiger, CJ., and Day, B. (2016). The Pseudomonas syringae type III effector HopG1 induces actin remodeling to promote symptom development and susceptibility during infection. Plant Physiology 171: 2239-2255.

Goto, S., Sasakura-Shimoda, F., Suetsugu, M., Selvaraj, M., Hayashi, N., Yamazaki, M., Ishitani, M., Shimono, M., Sugano, S., Matsushita, A., Tanabata, T., and Takatsuji, H. (2015). Development of disease-resistant rice by optimized expression of WRKY45. Plant Biotechnology Journal 13 (6): 753-765.

Akagi, A., Fukushima, S., Okada, K., Jiang, CJ., Yoshida, R., Nakayama, A., Shimono, M., Sugano, S., Yamane, H., and Takatsuji, H. (2014). WRKY45-dependent priming of diterpenoid phytoalexin biosynthesis in rice and the role of cytokinin in triggering the reaction. Plant Mol Biol. 86 (1-2): 171-183.

Yokotani, N., Sato, Y., Tanabe, S., Chujo, T., Shimizu, T., Okada, K., Yamane, H., Shimono, M., Sugano, S., Takatsuji, H., Kaku, H., Minami, E., and Nishizawa, Y. (2013). OsWRKY76 is a rice transcriptional repressor playing opposite roles in blast disease resistance and cold stress tolerance. Journal of Experimental Botany 64 (16): 5085-5097.

Nakayama, A., Fukushima, S., Goto, S., Matsushita, A., Shimono, M., Sugano, S., Jiang, CJ., Akagi, A., Yamazaki, M., Inoue, H., and Takatsuji, H. (2013). Genome-wide identification of WRKY45-regulated genes that mediate benzothiadiazole-induced defense responses in rice. BMC Plant Biology 13 (1).

Henty-Ridilla, J., Shimono, M., Li, J., Chang, JH., Day, B., and Staiger, CJ. (2013). The plant actin cytoskeleton responds to signals from microbe-associated molecular patterns. PLOS Pathogens 9 (4).

Jiang, CJ., Shimono, M., Sugano, S., Kojima, M., Liu, X., Inoue, H., Sakakibara, H., and Takatsuji, H. (2013). Cytokinins act synergistically with salicylic acid to activate defense gene expression in rice. Mol Plant-Microbe Interact 26: 287-296.

Porter, K., Shimono, M., Tian, M., and Day B. (2012). Arabidopsis actin-depolymerizing factor-4 links pathogen perception, defense activation and transcription to cytoskeletal dynamics. PLOS Pathogens 8.

Marzougui, S., Sugimoto, K., Yamanouchi, U., Shimono, M., Hoshino, T., Hori, K., Kobayashi, M., Ishiyama, K., and Yano, M. (2012). Mapping and characterization of seed dormancy QTLs using chromosome segment substitution lines in rice. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 124: 893-902

Shimono, M., Koga, H., Akagi, A., Hayashi, N., Goto, S., Sawada, M., Kurihara, T., Matsushita, A., Sugano, S., Jiang, CJ., Kaku, H., Inoue, H., and Takatsuji, H. (2012). Rice WRKY45 plays important roles in fungal and bacterial disease resistance. Mol Plant Path 13: 83-94.

Sugano, S., Jiang, CJ., Miyazawa, S., Matsumoto, C., Yazawa, K., Hayashi, N., Shimono, M., Nakayama, A., Miyao, M., and Takatsuji, H. (2010). Role of OsNPR1 in rice defense program as revealed by genome-wide expression analysis. Plant Mol Biol. 74: 549-562.

Jiang, CJ., Shimono, M., Sugano, S., Kojima, M., Yazawa, K., Yoshida, R., Inoue, H., Hayashi, N., Sakakibara, H., and Takatsuji, H. (2010). Abscisic acid interacts antagonistically with salicylic acid-signaling pathway in rice-Magnaporthe grisea interaction. Mol Plant-Microbe Interact 23: 791-798.

Jiang, CJ., Shimono, M., Maeda, S., Inoue, H., Mori, M., Hasegawa, S., Sugano, S., and Takatsuji, H. (2009). Suppression of the rice fatty-acid desaturase gene OsSSI2 enhances resistance to blast and leaf blight diseases in rice. Mol Plant-Microbe Interact 22: 820-829.

Shimono, M., Sugano, S., Nakayama, A., Jiang, CJ., Ono, K., Toki, S., and Takatsuji, H. (2007). Rice WRKY45 plays a crucial role in benzothiadiazole-inducible blast resistance. Plant Cell 19: 2064-2076.

Nishiguchi, M., Yamasaki, S., Lu, X.Z., Shimoyama, A., Hanada, K., Sonoda, S., Shimono, M., Sakai, J., Mikoshiba, Y., and Fujisawa, I. (2006). Konjak mosaic virus: the complete nucleotide sequence of the genomic RNA and its comparison with other potyviruses. Arch Virol. 151: 1643-1650.

Shimono, M., Ino, M., Sonoda, S., Fujimura, T., and Nishiguchi, M. (2005). Inverse correlation between mRNA levels in GFP-silenced transgenic Nicotiana benthamiana and resistance to Potato virus X engineered to contain GFP sequence. J Gen Plant Path 71: 147-152.

Shimono, M., Yazaki, J., Nakamura, K., Kishimoto, N., Kikuchi, S., Iwano, M., Yamamoto, K., Sakata, K., Sasaki, T., and Nishiguchi, M. (2003). cDNA microarray analysis of gene expression in rice plants treated with probenazole, a chemical inducer of disease resistance. J Gen Plant Path 69: 76-82.

Sonoda, S., Koiwa, H., Kanda, K., Kato, H., Shimono, M., and Nishiguchi, M. (2000). The helper component-proteinase of sweet potato feathery mottle virus facilitates systemic spread of Potato virus X in Ipomoea nil. Phytopathology 90: 944-950.

Sato, S., Ishikawa, S., Shimono, M., and Shinjyo, C. (1996). Genetic studies on an awnness geneAn-4 on chromosome 8 in rice, Oryza sativa L. Breeding Science 46: 321-327.