Funding Program for World-Leading Innovative R&D on Science and Technology (FIRST Program)
Core Researchers supported by JST
Secondary operational support institutions
Tomoji KAWAI

 The "Funding Program for World-Leading Innovative R&D on Science and Technology (FIRST Program)" was launched by the Japanese government with the FY2009 supplemental budget. The program aims to strengthen Japan's global competitiveness and contribute to economic growth and people's welfare.

 One of the unprecedented features of the FIRST Program is that it gives high priority to an "operational support structure" by making it possible for each of the 30 core researchers to appoint an institution of his/her choice to support their research, which is truly a new way of running a research project.

 JST was appointed as an "operational support institution" by 5 of the 30 core researchers and as a "secondary operational support institution" by another core researcher. We will strive to ensure that our operational support for these six researchers is as effective as possible, so that the researchers can concentrate on their research activities.



Kazuyuki AIHARA Kazuyuki AIHARA / The University of Tokyo

Mathematical Theory for Modeling Complex Systems and its Transdisciplinary Applications in Science and Technology

This project studies a mathematical theory of modeling complex systems and its wide-ranging transdisciplinary applications in science and technology from the viewpoint of mathematical engineering.

We aim not only to systematize methodology for modeling complex systems mathematically on the basis of advanced control theory of complex systems, complex networks theory, and nonlinear time series analysis, but also to provide solutions for complex problems of high importance and urgency for society, such as innovative treatment strategies for cancer, countermeasures for pandemic influenza, and developing novel nonlinear electronic technology

Teruo OKANO / Tokyo Women’s Medical University Teruo OKANO

System Integration for Industrialization of Regenerative Medicine: Creation of Organ Factory

The project aims to develop cell sheets for cornea, cardiac muscle, esophagus, etc., using nanotechnology-based "Cell Sheet Engineering." It also aims to promote clinical trials of cell sheets through innovative regenerative medicine.

The development of mass production technology for cell sheets is another goal. Readily available tissue will lead to a dramatic increase in the number of patients who can be treated with this new technology. In future, we plan to contribute to providing cures for the ailments of various tissue and organs; we aim to establish a "regenerative medicine industry" with a goal to conquering various cancers and other intractable diseases.

Kazunori KATAOKA/The University of Tokyo Kazunori KATAOKA

Development of Innovative Diagnostic and Therapeutic Systems Based on Nanobiotechnology

The goal of this project is to establish cutting edge technology for earlier detection and accurate diagnosis of cancer, for pinpoint drug delivery to cancer cells, and for cancer treatment without serious side-effects.

We seek to build an advanced diagnostic and therapeutic system, through which we can provide high-quality and affordable medicines to anyone at anytime and anywhere. This less invasive system will help patients return to work earlier, and will help the medical industry grow into one of Japan's core industries.

Koichi TANAKA/Shimadzu Corporation Kouichi TANAKA

Development of a Next-generation Mass Spectrometry System, and Contribution toward Drug Discovery and Diagnostics.

The project aims to develop a mass spectrometry (MS) system with the best performance in the world, and to search for new biomarkers for cancers and Alzheimer's diseases, as well as to search for target molecular candidates for the establishment of new diagnostics and therapeutics.

In future, we expect to make the new MS system available on the market, so that it will further contribute to the development of new medicines and the establishment of effective diagnostics and therapeutics for various kinds of diseases, producing a society where long and healthy life is enjoyed.

Akira TONOMURA/RIKEN ,Hitachi, Ltd. Akira TONOMURA

Development and Application of Atomic-Resolution Holography Electron Microscope

The goal of this project is to develop the world's best performance holographic electron microscope for observing quantum states of a physical structure, beyond the performance of conventional electron microscopes.

This would enable the observation of microscopic phenomena at an atomic level for the first time in the world. With this development, Japan would once again claim the world's top position in the field of electron microscope technology. This project will greatly contribute to progress in materials science, life sciences, environmental technology, and other disciplines.

Tomoji KAWAI/Osaka University Tomoji KAWAI

Research and Development of Innovative Nanobiodevices based on Single-Molecule Analysis -Ultra-fast Single-Molecule-DNA Sequencing, Ultra-Low-Concentration Virus Detection, and Ultra-Sensitive Biomolecule Monitoring-

The goal of this project is to develop a diagnostic system which enables the detection of a virus, a pathogen, and cancer within 15 minutes, using the "single-molecule analysis technique" to enable the identification of a single virus or pathogen in blood at very high speed as well as enabling analysis of their characteristics.

By making this system available on the market in future, diagnoses of various diseases will become less invasive, which will contribute to the realization of a safe, secure and healthy society.
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