JST Basic Research Programs
PRESTO

Chief Researcher Shinichi Nishikawa

Research area “Understanding Life by iPS Cells Technology”

"PRESTO", part of JST's Basic Research Programs, is a program to support research projects conducted by individual researchers, intended for fostering promising ideas for future innovation that fit the Strategic Sectors. Under the management of a Research Supervisor and Area Advisers, researchers are involved in research activities for three to five years while interacting with and inspiring each other. Also known as "Sakigake Bokujo" or ranch of pioneers, the program has given birth to a number of human networks for innovation.
This research area comprises several fields (including cellular reprogramming, transdifferentiation and stem cell biology) in which major breakthroughs are expected by use of the technology involved in generating induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. Basic research on pioneering approaches or having the potential for clinical medicine will be also involved. Specifically included are 1) advancing and simplifying reprogramming technologies based on the molecular mechanisms of cellular reprogramming, 2) analysis and directed induction of stem cell differentiation and transdifferentiation processes, 3) elucidation of the molecular mechanisms underlying epigenetic alteration during iPS formation, 4) elucidation of pathogenetic mechanisms of various diseases through the effective use of iPS cells, and 5) development of animal models at the cellular level for human diseases using iPS cells.

Research achievements

“Observation of emerging iPS cells”

(Ryoko Araki et al. : Stem Cells 28 213-220, 2010)

“Observation of emerging iPS cells”(Ryoko Araki et al. : Stem Cells 28 213-220, 2010)

We are committed to conducting research on the formation of iPS cells to generate iPS cells in a safe and efficient manner. After introducing four transcription factors, we examined more than 200,000 mouse somatic cells at an interval of 7.5 minutes for two weeks, and analyzed the records. We have obtained detailed information on their transformation from somatic to iPS cells and dynamic characteristics in this period, which, we hope, will promote analyses of iPS cells at the gene level.

“Development of regenerative medicine using rabbit iPS cells”

(Honda A et al : J. Biol. Chem. 285 31362-31369, 2010)

“Development of regenerative medicine using rabbit iPS cells”(Honda A et al : J. Biol. Chem. 285 31362-31369, 2010)

The rabbit has served as a laboratory animal for a long period of time. Rabbits are suitable for iPS cell transplantation and chimeric experiments since they are not only small and easy to take care of, but also free of ethical concerns unlike humans. Following an examination of the form of cell colonies and factors required for the maintenance of cells, we confirmed that the type of the rabbit iPS cells we generated was similar to the "human type" presented by human iPS cells. We aim at realization of safer and reliable regenerative medicine, and to this end we will try to construct a sophisticated model of regenerative medicine utilizing rabbit iPS cells.

Area advisors

Name Title / Affiliation
Fumitoshi Ishino Professor, Medical Research Institute, Tokyo Medical and Dental University
Hideyuki Okano Professor, Graduate School of Medicine, Keio University
Yumiko Saga Professor, National Institute of Genetics, Research Organization of Information and Systems
Hiromitsu Nakauchi Director/Professor, Center for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo
Hitoshi Niwa Project Leader, Center for Developmental Biology, RIKEN
Yutaka Hanazono Professor, Center for Molecular Medicine, Jichi Medical University
Hideyuki Haruyama Corporate Officer/Head of R&D Division, Daiichi Sankyo Company, Ltd.

Implementation system

Chart:Implementation system

List of research subjects

Researchers (PhaseⅠ)

Researchers (affiliation) Research Themes Keywords
Ryoko Araki
Team Leader, Transcriptome Research Group, National Institute of Radiological Sciences
Understanding the mechanisms underlying the genome reprogramming through comparison between the two approaches, iPS and SCNT Basic research on iPS cells, Genetic analysis
Kenji Osafune
Associate Professor, Center for iPS cell Research and Application (CiRA), Kyoto University
Modeling for Polycystic Kidney Disease with Patient-derived Pluripotent Stem Cells Applied medical research on iPS cells, Kidney disorders
Satoshi Kishigami
Associate Professor, School of Biology-Oriented Science and Technology, Kinki University
Development of efficient reprogramming technique using somatic cell nuclear transfer Basic technical research on iPS cells, Nuclear transplantation
Erika Sasaki
Laboratory Head, Laboratory of Applied Developmental Biology, Marmoset Research Department, Central Institute for Experimental Animals
Establishment of human disease model marmosets using marmoset iPS cells Basic technical research on iPS cells, Model animals
Atsufumi Suzuki
Associate Professor, Medical Institute of Bioregulation, Kyushu University
Induction of functionally mature hepatocytes from fibroblasts by essential factors for hepatocyte differentiation Basic research on iPS cells, Regenerative medicine, Transdifferentiation
Ken-ichiro Seino
Professor, Institute of Medical Science, St. Marianna University
A novel immune cell regenerative medicine using a technique of cell reprogramming Applied medical research on iPS cells, Cellular immunity
Kazuhito Tomizawa
Professor, Faculty of Medical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kumamoto University
Generation of Pluripotent Stem Cells by Protein Transduction Therapy Basic technical research on iPS cells, Protein
Shinji Masui
Division Chief, Department of Regenerative Medicine, Research Institute, International Medical Center of Japan
A system development to induce any type of cell Basic research on iPS cells, Regenerative medicine, Transdifferentiation
Osam Mazda
Professor, Graduate school of Medical Science, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine
Nonviral procedures to generate iPS Basic technical research on iPS cells, Genes, Episomal vector
Yasuhiro Yamada
Professor, Graduate School of Medicine, Gifu University
Identification of the origin of epigenetic abnormalities in cancer cells by use of the cellular reprogramming technique Applied medical research on iPS cells, Epigenetics

Researchers (PhaseⅡ)

Researchers (affiliation) Research Themes Keywords
Masatsugu Ema
Assistant professor Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences Tsukuba University
Stem cell function controlled by Klf family gene Basic research on iPS cells, Stem cells
Yasuhide Ohinata
Researcher, PRESTO, JST
Understanding the mechanism of iPS cell induction through the study of the primordial germ cells Basic research on iPS cells, Germ cells
Hiroshi Kataoka
Researcher, PRESTO, JST
Generation of hematopoietic and endothelial cells by iPS technology Applied medical research on iPS cells, Blood/Endothelium, Differentiation induction
Akira Kurisaki
Senior Researcher, Organ Development Research Laboratory National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST)
Regulatory mechanisms of a chromatin-related factor involved in reprogramming process of somatic cells Basic research on iPS cells, Epigenetics, Protein
Akira Satoh
Associate Professor, Research Core for interdisciplinary sciences, Okayama University
Stepwise regulation of the cellular dedifferentiation Basic research on iPS cells, Transdifferentiation
Go Nagamatsu
Assistant Professor, School of medicine, Keio University
Establishment of novel reprogramming methods based on germ cell specificity Basic research on iPS cells, Germ cells
Noemi Fusaki
Leader, Unit of Cell Therapy & Regenerative Medicine DNAVEC Corporation
The secure production of iPS cells and their differentiation induction using Hemagglutinating virus of Japan Basic technical research on iPS cells, Quality of iPS cells, Virus vector
Kyouji Horie
Associate Professor, Graduate School of Medicine, Osaka University
Analysis of the mechanisms involved in iPS cell generation by forward genetics Basic research on iPS cells, Genetics
Arata Honda
Researcher, PRESTO, JST
Establishment of comprehensive assessment system for iPS cells using rabbit models Basic technical research on iPS cells, Model animals
Jiyoung Lee
Research Assistant Professor Junior, GCOE program Tokyo Medical and Dental University
Establishment of new oogonial stem cell line by manipulating cell cycle Applied medical research on iPS cells, Regenerative medicine, Germ stem cells
Tetsuro Watabe
Associate Professor, Graduate school of Medicine, University of Tokyo
Identification of novel theraputic targets for hereditary vascular diseases using reprogramming techniques Applied medical research on iPS cells, Pediatric disorders, Down's syndrome

Researchers (PhaseⅢ)

Researchers (affiliation) Research Themes Keyword
Yasuji Kitabatake
assistant professor, Osaka University Hospital Perinatal Center, Osaka university
Unraveling the pathogenic mechanisms of complications in chromosomal abnormalities Applied medical research on iPS cells, Pediatric disorders, Down's syndrome
Keiko Shimojima
Researcher, PRESTO, JST
Understanding the mechanisms of cerebral cortex formation using patient-derived iPS cells Applied medical research on iPS cells, Genetic disorders,Cranial nerve disorders
Yasuhiro Takashima
Research Associate, Wellcome Trust Centre for Stem Cell Research, University of Cambridge, UK
Establishment and analysis of naive state human iPS/ES cells Basic research on iPS cells, Quality of iPS cells
Jun K. Takeuchi
Associate Professor, Institute of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences, The University of Tokyo
Cardiovascular Pluripotency and Stemness by chromatin associated factors Applied medical research on iPS cells, Cardiomyocytes, Transdifferentiation
Hidetoshi Date
Research Associate, The University of Tokyo Hospital, Department of Neurology, The University of Tokyo
The development method of using linkage analysis and iPS/ES technology Applied medical research on iPS cells, Genetic disorders, Cranial nerve system disorders
Akitsu Hotta
Associate Professor (at certain research centers) of CiRA, Kyoto University
Induction of high quality iPS cells through artificial control of the intra-nuclear environment Basic research on iPS cells, Quality of iPS cells, Epigenetics
Taro Muto
Researcher, PRESTO, JST
Establishment of experimental human genetics Applied medical research on iPS cells, Genetic disorders, Disease-causing genes
Kazuhiro Yagita
Professor, Graduate School of Medicine Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine
Understanding of Circadian Clock Development Through the Reprogramming Basic medical research using iPS cells, Biological clock
Tomonobu Watanabe
Team Leader, Laboratory for Comprehensive Bioimaging, RIKEN
Fundamental development of multi-dimensional exhaustive quantity observation technology for iPS research field Basic technical research on iPS cells, Microscopes, Quantitative measurement

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