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The Kitasato Institute


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Introduction to the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences

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Introduction

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     The Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences engages in basic and applied research and advanced professional education in life sciences and aims to contribute to academic research development and health promotion through research and education related to the cause, preventive medicine, and therapeutic methods for various major diseasesB

     In the first phase, the institute conducts research as well as translational research centered on infection control in order to clarify the mechanism of infection and develops technologies for preventive medicine and treatment.

     Basic and applied research are conducted in accordance with the keywords "infection control", "activation of biological functions", "translational research of bioactive compounds", and "surveillance". Furthermore, in cooperation with the graduate schools of Kitasato University, the institute aims to apply and develop the basic research conducted in the graduate schools and foster distinguished researchers and specialists.

The Relationship between the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences
and the Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences

     The Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences operates as a research unit and "basic organizational unit other than graduate schools for graduate education and research" as stated in the School Education Act.
     On the other hand, as an educational unit, the Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences, established in 2002 as an independent graduate school, provides postgraduate education to foster people who can conduct research on infection control.
     Although the vertical and hierarchical structures of the existing educational research institutes attached to the university departments and graduate schools are suitable for concentrated studies in specialized fields of study, such structures are occasionally unsuitable for education and research applying interdisciplinary research and high technologies in the field of infection control.

     Therefore, we formed a horizontal organization in which the research unit and educational unit are independent from each other. In the research unit, the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences allows its users to flexibly develop research projects.
     In the educational unit, the Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences collaborates with other graduate schools as well as academic research institutes both in and out of Japan in order to facilitate interdisciplinary research and mobility, as well as provide education through problem-based learning..

Foundation ( History )

March 2000 - The Kitasato Institute and Kitasato Gakuen (Kitasato University) established the "council for setting up a research institute attached to Kitasato University and the graduate school".
July 2000 - The council was reorganized and renamed the "office for setting up the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences and graduate school".
April 2001 - The Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences was opened as a research institute attached to Kitasato University.
(The first director of the institute: Satoshi Omura)

- Some researchers and laboratory devices from the Center for Basic Research, the Research Center for Biological Function, and the Oriental Medicine Research Center of The Kitasato Institute were transferred to the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences.

- The "office for setting up the Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences" opened.
July 2002 - The Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences began offering its Master's Program.
September
2002

aaaa- Construction of the building for the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences (Building I) was completed.

- The 21st Century COE Program of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology of Japan was selected.
"Discovery of Anti-infectious Drugs from Natural Resources, and its Basic Studies"(Field: Life Science; pursued from fiscal 2002 to fiscal 2006)

April 2004 - The Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences began offering its Doctoral Program.
September
2007
- Kitasato University's Research Organization for Infection Control Sciences was established.
April 2008 - The present Kitasato Institute was established by integrating the former Kitasato Institute and Kitasato Gakuen.
April 2009 - The Center for Basic Research was merged into the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences.
August
2009
- The MEXT Support Program for Improving Graduate School Education, "Project to Develop a Global Institute for Infection Control Research and Education Center" was selected.

Research Organization

     The Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences has a steering committee (an executive organization equivalent to a faculty meeting) that leads the research committee, evaluation committees, which manage self-monitoring, teacher evaluation, external evaluation, and other matters, and committees for managing issues such as recombinant DNA experiments. The institute is comprised of the Department of Infection Control and Immunology, Department of Drug Discovery Sciences, Research Promotion Centers, Department of Research Project Studies, and an administrative office.

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Research and Teaching Staff ( Researchers )

     The Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences was established through the transfer of researchers and staff from the basic research unit of the former Kitasato Institute and teaching staff from the former Kitasato Gakuen (Kitasato University).

     Since its foundation, the Kitasato Institute has followed the spirit of practical science, which was declared by its founder Dr. Shibasaburo Kitasato, and contributed to society by researching the cause, prevention, and treatment of various diseases and basic research on infectious diseases, as well as the development of vaccines, antibiotics, and other anti-infective medications.
     At the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences, people selected from the former Kitasato Institute by the "committee to select full-time teachers for the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences" conduct education and research, and since 2002, have done so together with teachers from other graduate schools and academic research institutes.

   Fixed-Term Contract Teachers 

     Full-time teachers work on a fixed term contract of five years.

     They are evaluated according to the "criteria for evaluating teachers at the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences". In accordance with their positions, their performances in education and research are evaluated annually. If they pass interim reviews conducted two and four years after their appointment, they are reappointed.
     Reviews for the reappointment of teachers who have worked at the institute from its establishment were conducted in 2006 and 2011. Reviews for the reappointment of teachers appointed after the establishment of the institute have also been conducted.

   Research and Teaching Staff ( Researchers )

year Prof. Assoc. Prof. Lec. Assist Prof. Res. Assoc. Director Senior Res Res Admin. Staff
2012 11
( 2 )
4 4 7
( 5 )
1 2 4 17 13
( 2 )
2011 11
( 2 )
3 6 6
( 4 )
1 2 4 16 14
( 2 )
2010 11
( 1 )
2 9 4
( 2 )
1 2 3 14 14
( 2 )
2009 11
( 1 )
2 9 2
( 0 )
1 2 3 18 14
( 2 )

Prof.: Professor, Assoc. Prof.: Associate Professor, Lec.: Lecturer/Junior Associate Professor, Assis Prof.: Assistant Professor,Br> Res. Assoc.: Research Associate
Senior Res.: Senior Researcher, Res.: Senior Researcher
Admin. Staff : Administrative Staff and Research Staff

International Exchange and Studying Abroad

Acceptance of the researchers

Year Number Research institutions
2011 7 @Kasetsart University (Thailand), Mahidol University (Thailand)
  Chulalongkorn University (Thailand)
  Research Center of Biotechnology (Indonesia)
2010 6   Chiang Mai University (Thailand), Mahidol University (Thailand)
  Chulalongkorn University (Thailand)
  Research Center of Biotechnology (Indonesia)
2009 4   Mahidol University (Thailand), Kasetsart University (Thailand)
  Large Oslo (Norway)
  National institute for disease control and prevention
2008 2 @Willow port Srinakarin University (Thailand)
  Kasetsart University (Thailand)
2007 6 @Kasetsart University (Thailand)
  JSPS Fellow foreign

Researchers Abroad

Year Category Research institutions
2011 Lecturer @Mahidol University (Thailand)
2010 Lecturer
Postgraduate
@Mahidol University (Thailand)
2009 Lecturer
Assist. Professor
Postgraduate
@Large Oslo (Norway)
  University of Pennsylvania (USA)
  Mahidol University (Thailand)
2008 Lecturer
Assist. Professor
@Large Oslo (Norway)
  University of Pennsylvania (USA)
2007 Associate Professor
Lecturer
@Mahidol University (Thailand)

Research Environment

     The laboratory devices of the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences are managed by the management committee of shared laboratory devices.

     These laboratory devices are shared by the teaching staff of the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences and the teaching staff and students of the Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences. They are also mutually used, mainly in the Shirokane campus, by the teaching staff and graduate students of the Oriental Medicine Research Center, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, and other departments.

  Nuclear magnetic resconance device (NMR 500MHz)
  Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, Flow cytometry (FACUS)
  Confocal laser scanning microscope, Image analyzer(Typhoon)
  Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis device, Electromagnetic contactor-Electromagnetic switch
  Transmission electron microscope(TEM), Scanning electron microscope(SEM)
   Ultracentrifuge(Beckman), DNA sequencer, Real-time PCR, Cryostat
  Time of flight-Mass spectrometry, Chemiluminescence image capture,
  all sorts of jar fermentor, etc.

Library

@Kitasato University Shirokane Library is mainly used.

Network Environment

     At the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences, using LAN (Ethernet), wireless LAN, or Wi-Fi requires registration. It is used by more than 100 users, including the teaching staff, graduate students, research students, and postgraduate students [Bulletin Boards (BBS)]

     Notifications to the teaching staff, graduate students, and research students are displayed on bulletin boards, such as the "Administrative office", "Network-related", "Committees" "Seminars and lectures", "Graduate students", "Grants-in-aid", and "Library".
     Many application forms can be downloaded from the website.

     Reserving shared laboratory devices is mostly done on the website.

Research results

     Backed by the specialty of each laboratory, the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences has received public research funds and research grants. It has also conducted joint research with other graduate schools, departments, and research institute attached to Kitasato University, as well as with other universities, academic research institutes, and pharmaceutical and other companies.

(1)  Joint research by laboratories within the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences
(2)  Joint research with other graduate schools, departments, research institutes,
    and hospitals attached to Kitasato University
(3)  Joint research with other universities and academic research institutes
(4)  Joint research with pharmaceutical companies

@Research Accomplishment Report Meeting

     The research accomplishment report meeting is held annually in December, in which the teaching staff and researchers from all laboratories report their research results.
     This meeting is designed to further develop research through presentations and question-and-answer sessions, which allow other teaching staff to assess and make suggestions on the research being conducted.

@Academic Papers and Other Research Achievements

year Academic
awards
Original
papers
Review
articles
Books Presentations Other Total
2010 3 108 23 0 205 1 340
2009 9 124 29 12 291 30 483
2008 1 90 22 8 225 23 369
2007 1 69 20 16 198 70 374

* Multiple papers and presentations derived from the same joint research by multiple laboratories are counted as one paper or presentation.

Accepted Public Research Funds and Research Grants

year MEXT MHLW Others Grants Total
2011 23 8 2 16 49
2010 22 7 2 8 39
2009 19 8 5 9 41
2008 18 8 4 4 34
2007 11 8 1 11 31

MEXT: Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, MHLW: Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, Others: Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications and Local government, Grants: Private and public research grants

21st Century COE Program

      In 2003, a 21st Century COE program titled "Discovery of Anti-infectious Drugs from Natural Resources, and its Basic studies" was selected. Under this program, in the five years running up to 2008, 20 types and 65 elements of anti-infective drug candidates were discovered, the chemical library of natural product-derived compounds was expanded, joint research with the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (WHO/TDR), Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi), and other international organizations was conducted, overseas research and education centers were developed, and achievements made included the release of 613 original papers, applications for intellectual property (58 open patents), and 28 academic awards. The assessment committee of the 21st Century COE Program also highly valued educational efforts, such as the hosting of 6 international symposiums, 14 special lectures, 92 open seminars (with 56 speakers from overseas and 81 speakers from Japan), and lectures in English by a native English-speaking teacher at the Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences on the use of scientific English.

Intellectual Property

     At the Kitasato Institute for Life Sciences, the findings of research conducted by the laboratories and projects are made public through academic papers and presentations at academic societies. Patents are applied for and published for research findings considered to be useful.