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Sysmex-Funded Research Laboratory to Launch at the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation


Sysmex Corporation (HQ: Kobe, Japan; President: Hisashi Ietsugu) has made a commitment to fund a cell therapy research laboratory at the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation (FBRI). Under the direction of Dr. Shigetaka Asano (Professor, Waseda University; Professor Emeritus, University of Tokyo; President, Japanese Society of Hematology; Technical Advisor, FBRI), Sysmex will commence joint research at the Sysmex-Asano Laboratory, to commercialize new diagnostic technologies for effective cell therapy.

Through the fruits of this joint research, Sysmex hopes to contribute to advanced medical treatment and accelerate the progress of the Kobe Medical Industry Development Project.

Sysmex is directing its R&D efforts towards creating highly valuable diagnostic testing aiming at disease management. Working closely with research and medical institutions both in and outside of Japan, Sysmex is currently engaged in studies on various diseases as hematological disorders, cancers, infectious diseases, and metabolic syndromes.

A core organization of the Kobe Medical Industry Development Project, FBRI is accerelating technological development and clinical research for next-generation medical systems, and forming a large cluster of medical industries.

Approving of the proposal of FBRI, Sysmex has decided to fund the establishment of the Sysmex-Asano Laboratory for cell therapy research.

Under the direction of Dr. Shigetaka Asano, this new laboratory will elucidate the mechanisms of immune reactions associated with cell therapy (bone marrow transplantation*2 and cord blood transplantation*3), such as graft-versus-host disease*4 (GVHD). It aims at creating new diagnostic techniques to improve the efficacy and safety of cell therapy.

The Sysmex-Asano Laboratory will be established in January 2007 at the approximately 300m2-wide space on the fourth floor of the Translational Research Informatics Center (TRI), with five visiting researchers from Sysmex.

[ About the Laboratory ]
1. Host organization: Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation (FBRI)
2. Name: Sysmex-Asano Laboratory
3. Joint research themes
(a) Development of diagnostic and treatment techniques that improve the efficacy and safety of cell therapy
(b) Development of testing technology for an accurate understanding of the pathophysiology of autoimmune diseases
4. Project period: January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2011

*1 Kobe Medical Industry Development Project
Under the initiative of the Kobe City Government, a cluster of medical-related industries is being formed through an industry-government-academic alliance within an advanced medical technology R&D hub developed at the Port Island Phase II site.

*2 Bone marrow transplantation (BMT)
Bone marrow contains bone hematopoietic stem cells which generate leukocyte, erythrocytes, and platelets. As radical therapy, BMT is applied into several hematological disorders such as leukemia and aplastic anemia. Transplanted bone marrow is effective to rescue the patients under myelosuppression after massive chemotherapy and radiation. But the treatment may result in adverse effects, such as GVHD.

*3 Cord blood transplantation
Cord blood is human blood from the umbilical cord and placenta that connects a fetus to his/her mother. Containing a rich concentration of hematopoietic stem cells, cord blood is collected after the delivery and utilized as a source of stem cells transplantation in place of bone marrow.

*4 Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD)
This is a symptom where transplanted leukocytes, after engraftment in the patient (host), attack the patient’s organs immunologically recognizing them as “non-self”.


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