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Project for Induced Pluripotent Stem (iPS) Cell Research in the Basic Research Programs of JST (CREST, PRESTO)

Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) launches a stem cell research project based on iPS cell in January 28th, 2008. The project includes two research areas set in CREST and PRESTO respectively. CREST and PRESTO are two of the major basic research funding programs in Japan. JST strongly encourage researchers to boost the iPS cell research by funding more than JP¥ 5 billion (US$ 47 million) for the next 5 years mainly with those two funding programs.

1. Background

In the Basic Research Programs of JST including CREST and PRESTO, several new projects are started every year. A specific research area is defined for each project based on "Strategic Sectors" designated by the Japanese government (the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology). JST then solicits research applications for the projects. With this announcement, JST starts a request for applications for the iPS project in the fiscal year 2008. JST also plans to solicit applications for the next two consecutive fiscal years, 2009 and 2010 in this project.

2. Request for Applications

As a result of recent innovative study on iPS cell, a strategic sector for the technology of stem cell generation and control based on cell reprogramming was defined. Based on this strategic sector, JST calls for applications at the CREST program, in which a principal investigator organizes a research team and at the PRESTO program, in which a principal investigator conduct research individually. Applications are accepted from January 28th to March 4th. A principal investigator must belong to any Japanese research institution on submitting an application.

Details will be posted on the web (http://www.jst.go.jp/kisoken/teian-en.html).

3. Budget and Duration

  Annual Budget Total Duration Number of personnel in a team Planned number of awardees
CREST (Type 1) JP¥30-50 million /year JP¥150-250 million 5 years Several - 20 7-10
(Type 2) JP¥60-100 million /year JP¥300-500 million
PRESTO JP¥10 million /year JP¥30-40 million 3 years 1 Approx. 10