Eight years ago, the Tokyo University of Science Researcher Network was founded as a forum for TUS researchers to communicate and interact through their research across the frame of departments and specialties. The network’s founding was preceded by multidisciplinary discussions between volunteers working toward the Global COE Program application. The aims of the network were not only to expand the research horizons of individual researchers, but also to discover and create interdisciplinary and new research fields through the understanding of other scientific disciplines. Then, in collaboration with National Cancer Center East Hospital, the Center for Technologies against Cancer (CTC) was founded in 2009 by researchers, including many of the network members. The aim of the center was to develop innovative diagnostic and treatment methods for cancer. Tokyo University of Science does not have a school of medicine, so the founding of the CTC was our first organizational effort to enter the fields of healthcare and medicine. Yet, we were able to make great strides and accomplish much. Notable achievements include hosting a total of 21 lectures by physicians at the National Cancer Center to advance the understanding of cancer treatment among our faculty members and students, and conducting on-campus recruitment of engineering and science faculty members to expand the Researcher Network and get them involved in healthcare or medical research for the first time. Upon the closing of the CTC in 2013, we decided to established the new research division to inherit, maintain, and expand what we have achieved from the CTC activities, such as the cooperative on- and off-campus networks connecting the fields of medicine, science, and technology. Through this division, we will continue ongoing research and development to promote the commercialization of research results, and will prepare for the founding of a new research center that will take over the cooperative projects developed by the CTC.
With a life expectancy of 86 years for women and 80 years for men, Japan has become the world’s leading country in terms of longevity. However, to realize a society with sustainable health and longevity, it is essential to shift from hospital-based care to home healthcare, to prevent bed confinement and dementia, and to develop early diagnostic and treatment methods for chronic diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular and cerebral nerve diseases, allergic diseases, and autoimmune diseases. In collaboration with off-campus medical institutions, this research division integrates cross-sectionally the highly specialized science and technology developed at TUS with the aim of realizing innovative healthcare techniques that contribute to creating a society where people live long, healthy lives.
Research projects, aims, and teams
This research division creates and nurtures the advanced science and technology that serve as a foundation for realizing a society where people live long, healthy lives. This is accomplished through the networks connecting highly motivated scientists and advanced knowledge and technologies at TUS with of-campus facilities for medicine, nursing care, and health maintenance. This research division then functions as an application core for advanced science and technology and as a practical core for multidisciplinary projects like the Researchers Network. At this division, multidisciplinary core projects are developed by experts in electromechanical engineering, including robotics, microfabrication, fluid dynamics, image processing, and electronic control; materials science, including biomedical polymers, inorganic materials, and nanoparticles; information science including machine learning, big data, and bioinformatics; and medical and pharmaceutical sciences, including drug discovery, organic chemistry, health sciences, and medicine.
Advanced preventive and diagnostic technology development team
This team aims to develop techniques for early disease detection that utilize liquid biopsy or a diagnostic tool using ill explored light frequencies, to predict the prognosis of cerebral aneurysm by analyzing factors associated with growth and rupture, and to establish a living environment that prevents diseases.
Novel treatment technique development team
This team aims to 1) discover chemical and biological agents for the treatment of cancer, immune diseases (allergy and rheumatism), and infectious diseases, 2) to develop treatment systems that utilize three-dimensional information from combined diagnostic imaging, and 3) to improve the safety and efficacy of boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) for patients with intractable cancer toward the therapy’s incorporation into clinical practice.
Functional recovery technology development team
This team aims to develop 1) robots for home healthcare and nursing care, to develop 2) artificial organs, treatment devices, and auxiliary systems using new materials and new techniques, and to develop 3) regenerative medicine technology to promote functional recovery and reconstruction.
Individualized medical technology development team
This team aims to develop 1) individualized medical technology using large-scale clinical and omics data, to predict disease prognosis computationally, to create 2) treatment selection algorithms, and to develop 3) a management engineering-based healthcare system, novel influenza vaccines, and tailor-made cancer therapies using antibody-producing cells.
Healthy longevity city development team
The aging society is rapidly developing, and the number of patients with locomotive syndrome and dementia and the number of deaths is expected to increase to a large extent in the future, whereas it is not expected to increase the number of hospital beds., which will make long-term care at hospitals difficult. Working in cooperation with the local municipalities, we aim to develop urban areas and to create medical care and nursing care systems, which made residents live and age peacefully in a familiar.