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Message from Project Director

Yasushi Kawaguchi

Director and Professor

Research Center for Asian Infectious Diseases

Yasushi Kawaguchi Director and Professor

The Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo (IMSUT) established its collaboration sites in fiscal 2005 in Beijing and Harbin, China, and had been conducting China-Japan research collaboration, for two 5-year terms (fiscal 2005-2010; 2010-2015), supported by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology under the directorship of Professor Aikichi Iwamoto, former project director. IMSUT thus set up a new sustainable system that allowed IMSUT scientists to work in China, along with Chinese scientists, focusing on the studies of emerging and reemerging infections. In 2015, I succeeded Dr. A. Iwamoto as project director and launched the project China-Japan Research Collaboration on Defense against Emerging and Reemerging Infections, a 5-year J-GRID program (fiscal 2015-2020) of Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED). In this project, I promoted basic research that would be translated into more practical use, by cooperating with overseas and domestic bases. In 2020, based on the results of the previous five years, I launched another project Studies to Control Emerging, Re-emerging and Imported Infectious Diseases to Be Conducted in International Collaboration Sites in China, a 5-year AMED program Japan Program for Infectious Diseases Research and Infrastructure, which is aimed to promote basic research for prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of infectious diseases.

IMSUT operates a joint laboratory in collaboration with the Institute of Microbiology (IM), which belongs to the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), a large national institution consisting of more than 100 research institutes all over China. As a principal investigator (PI) at IM, Dr. Jin Gohda (Project Associate Professor) is leading basic and translational studies of HIV, dengue virus, norovirus and SARS-CoV-2, etc. along with his Chinese staff. Furthermore, IMSUT is also conducting a collaborative research program on avian influenza virus between Professor Yoshihiro Kawaoka at IMSUT and Professor Hualan Chen at the Harbin Veterinary Research Institute of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences. The activities in Beijing and Harbin are supported by Project Professor Mitsue Hayashi of the Beijing Project Office.

Our aims are to make the most of the situation, in which the collaboration is being done in the highly advanced institution in China and to translate our basic studies into practical use in future. During the course of the collaboration, we intend to train and educate young Chinese and Japanese scientists for the future generation and hope to contribute to the friendship between the two peoples. We humbly request everybody’s warm support.