Research Area
Principle Investigators, Research Themes
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Research Area

Research Supervisor
Toshio Suda
(Professor, School of Medicine,
Keio University )

Outline of Research Area

The objective of this research area is to establish fundamental technologies contributing to advanced medicine through the development of cellular reprogramming technology. Remarkable progress has been made in this field recently, especially the generation of iPS cells. The research objectives include the advancement and simplification of this technology, the elucidation of pathological mechanisms through the development of model cells, the formulation of new therapy strategies, and novel methods for the early discovery of diseases.
Specifically, included is research on cellular reprogramming and differentiation mechanisms using genomics, chromosome structure and epigenetic analysis; research on gene transfer regulation; high-throughput screening of reprogramming-inducing compounds; and research using iPS cells generated from patients with congenital diseases for the elucidation of pathological mechanisms. Moreover, the research also covers an area that may lead to the pioneering of new therapy methods and preventive medicine through the integration of stem cell research and pathological studies.

Research Supervisor's Policy on Call for Application, Selection and Management of the Research Area (FY2010)

Since the first successful generation of human iPS cells by Dr. Shinya Yamanaka, Kyoto University, more relevant findings have followed both at home and abroad. However, there are still lots of unknown phenomena that need elucidation and issues that need resolution for clinical study and application of the research achievements. Meanwhile, further possibilities in the research on the reprogramming technology for differentiated cells are being markedly expanded. We should continue to aim at elucidating the cellular reprogramming mechanism to create new medical infrastructure by continuously addressing expansion of the range and outlet of R&D for iPS cells.
In this research area, we had selected the research themes twice since 2008, and the concrete issues shown below are considered to be important;
(1) Elucidating the molecular mechanism in the process of cellular reprogramming of differentiated cells.
(2) Developing new methods for generation of iPS cells; and the directed cellular reprogramming method is thought to be very interesting one because it doesn't necessarily acquire to reprogram cells completely.
(3) Developing a method for making safer iPS cells without tumorigenicity; utilizing virus vector that make no gene insertion in the chromosome, and substituting proteins to reprogram can be the candidates, and evaluating the safety is also important.
(4) Heterogeneity in iPS cells by the cell origin and/or method to generation; in the research of patient-derived iPS cells, that point is very important, and the standardization of iPS cells itself can be the research theme.
If you are a researcher in other research ground, it is important how far you intend to take iPS studies into your own field and how far you have developed a preliminary iPS research.
CREST aims the realization of the research concept that principle investigators have. Among a number of proposals regarded iPS cells in higher-level than before, it will be very difficult to select the limited research themes. We are looking for researchers who can propose substantial and challenging research themes that can develop a new paradigm, as opposed to remaining an adherent of conventional research.
We are waiting for researchers to go ahead with their research by incorporating the new concept of cellular reprogramming into their own research base to make a lot of innovative technologies that originate from Japan.
Regarding newly adopted research subjects, about 1 or 2 meetings will be held every year to exchange information and to present research achievements. Also, the exchange of cells or other materials will be promoted to accelerate research.

Advisory Board

Research Supervisor

Toshio Suda Professor, School of Medicine, Keio University

Research Advisor

Hiroyuki Sasaki Director, Medical Institute of Bioregulation, Kyushu University
Mikiko Shiomi Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, The University of Tokyo
Yoshimi Takai Professor, School of Medicine, Kobe University
Masatoshi Takeichi Director, Center for Developmental Biology, RIKEN
Toru Nakano Professor, Medical school and Graduate school of Frontier Biosciences, Osaka University
Yoshihide Hayashizaki Director, Omics Science Center, RIKEN
Kohei Miyazono Professor, Graduate school of Medicine, The University of Tokyo

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