The Japan News by The Yomiuri Shimbun

Home > Campus Now > NEWS REPORT : Autumn Issue (Nov.)

Campus Now

Autumn Issue (Nov.)


Contributing to society through science and technology

Waseda Research produces steady results.

First in world to clarify the function of a cancer suppressant protein complex

Professor Kurumizaka announces the research results

A research group led by Professor Hitoshi Kurumizaka (Faculty of Science and Engineering), Koichi Sato (student in the Graduate School of Advanced Science and Engineering), Professor Minoru Takata (Radiation Biology Center, Kyoto University), Professor Masamichi Ishiai (Radiation Biology Center, Kyoto University) and Associate Professor Hiroshi Kimura (Graduate School of Frontier Biosciences, Osaka University) has succeeded in being the world's first to clarify the function of the FANCI-FANCD2 complex, a cancer suppressant protein complex.

The FANCI-FANCD2 complex is a causal gene product of serious genetic illness which accompanies a high incidence of cancer. It was known that the complex suppresses cancer within the human body. However, the mechanism had not been clarified and that function was focused on as an important research theme throughout the world.

The group's success was the first in the world. The group was able to clarify the function of this cancer suppressant protein complex. This is viewed as an important first step to clarifying the cause of genetic illness and cancer.

Practical application of a robotic airway management simulator

Through joint research with Kyoto Kagaku Co., Ltd., the laboratory of Professor Atsuo Takanishi (Faculty of Science and Engineering) has succeeded in replicating a variety of cases such as lockjaw, micrognathia and nuchal rigidity. The collaboration has also succeeded in the development and practical application of an airway management simulator which enables objective assessment and confirmation for the appropriateness of tracheal intubation which is often performed in urgent situations such as emergency lifesaving treatment.

Throughout the world, only the Takanishi Laboratory and Kyoto Kagaku are developing simulators which enable quantitative assessment and confirmation of medical procedures. These simulators possess the potential to greatly improve the quality of medical procedures training.

Research Institute for Advanced Network Technology establishes the Inf-Life Forum

The Research Institute for Advanced Network Technology (Director: Professor Yasuhiro Hayashi, Faculty of Science and Engineering) has established the Inf-Life Forum, which will conduct research with participation from corporations. The forum will focus on the form of an urban lifestyle and homes which are the infrastructure for that lifestyle. This urban lifestyle will combine advanced telecommunications infrastructure, energy infrastructure and next-generation mobility.

The use of information and communications technology in daily life will further increase due to social conditions such as the full-scale onset of an elderly population, the growth of telecommunications technology, expanded implementation of renewable energy and the spread of devices such as electric vehicles. Amidst such conditions, the Inf-Life Forum will feature cooperation with corporations related to housing, electronics, telecommunications and energy infrastructure. Based on national policy and technical development trends of corporations, the forum will take a comprehensive view of a future urban lifestyle and review the form of towns and homes which will serve as the infrastructure for that lifestyle. Furthermore, information on the results of this review will be broadly transmitted to society in order to support the construction of a better society.

Two themes selected for the MEXT's Project for Promoting Research and Development to Address National Issues (Nuclear Power Basic Infrastructure Strategy Initiative)

Two themes proposed by Waseda University have been selected through open application for the above project held by the MEXT. Professor Oka and Professor Matsuoka will now supervise research and development for contributing to the project's goal of strengthening/enhancing fundamental technology related to improving the safety of nuclear power facilities based on lessons learned from the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

Name of MEXT project Proposed theme Research leader
Basic infrastructure research for improving the safety of nuclear power plants Mechanical research for behavior of molten materials in the lower head of nuclear reactors Professor Yoshiaki Oka
Faculty of Science and Engineering
Humanities/social science research for the relation of nuclear power and society Research regarding social regulations and risk governance for the nuclear power industry Professor Shunji Matsuoka
Graduate School of Advanced Science and Engineering
Selected for the 2012 CREST program of the Japan Science and Technology agency

As part of a system to induce innovations which will lead to social/economic reform, the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) promotes fundamental research for achieving vital issues faced by Japan and produces creative new technology which gives birth to innovations in scientific technology. From Waseda University, the research themes of Professor Kenko Uchida, Professor Yasuhiro Hayashi, Professor Hiroshi Nakai and Professor Haruko Takeyama (all from the Faculty of Science and Engineering) were selected for the JST's 2012 CREST (Strategic Basic Research Programs). In total 70 themes were selected from a total of 751 applications for the 13 research fields in the CREST program

A detailed research theme overview is available at the following site: