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  • Toward the Development of Personalized Healthcare through the Promotion of Industry-Academia Collaboration
  • Toward the Development of Personalized Healthcare through the Promotion of Industry-Academia Collaboration

    This year marks the 12th year of the Tohoku University Tohoku Medical Megabank Organization since its establishment in February 2012. Since then, we have over 157,000 participants enrolled into the cohort studies, which started in 2013. Our biobank has over 4.3 million specimens stored, with more healthcare surveys that are still ongoing. Additionally, we have analyzed the whole genome of 50,000 people, and combining this with other data, such as metabolome analyses, and world-class information is stored in our supercomputer. We would like to express our sincere gratitude to the residents, local governments, relevant organizations, and our staff for their support.

    Let me now raise our three major goals for 2023.

    Firstly, the Center for Biobank Utilization and Academia-Industry Partnership will focus on further promoting the utilization of valuable specimens and information stored in the integrated biobank by researchers from academic institutions and companies nationwide through distribution and collaborative research.

    Secondly, we will promote collaboration with the Advanced Research Center for Innovations in Next-Generation Medicine (INGEM), which is a "Core Research Cluster" established at Tohoku University that we are also a founding member. Tohoku University Hospital and our organization will promote clinical research and strengthen efforts to tackle on the challenge of next-generation medicine.

    Lastly, we will promote the completion of whole genome sequencing of the 100,000 general population within our cohorts. We will update integrated analysis of the whole genome information together with various health information in our organization to build evidence that will serve as a foundation for the personalized healthcare.

    The basis of being able to achieve these three major goals lies with the integrated biobank that we established in our cohort studies. We intend to continue the ongoing tertiary assessments, carry out additional recruitment as per our plans and expand analytical information. We are determined to be the core of genome medical research in Japan. Additionally, we will also focus on the return of genomic results to link genome information to medical and healthcare.

    We look forward to your continued support and encouragement.

    February 2023

    Masayuki Yamamoto
    Executive Director