Tohoku University Tohoku Medical Megabank Organization was founded to establish an advanced medical system to foster the reconstruction from the Great East Japan Earthquake. The organization has been developing a biobank that combines medical and genome information during the process of rebuilding the community medical system and supporting health and welfare in the Tohoku area. The information from the brand-new biobank will create a new medical system, and, based on the findings of its analysis, the organization aims to attract more medical practitioners from all over the country to the area, promote industry-academic partnerships, create employment in related fields, and restore the medical system in Tohoku.
A blueprint for Tohoku University Tohoku Medical Megabank Organization is a ten-year project including three main activities: a biobank combining medical and genome information; an online platform for the coordination of community medical information; and training program designed for a varieties of highly specialized professionals and experts such as researchers of bioinformatics and science communicators. The biobank to be developed will be utilized to analyze the local heredity information so that it can establish an advanced medical system based on genome information with cutting-edge information and communication technology.
The project conducts a long-term health study of residents living in communities which suffered major damage from the Great East Japan Earthquake and will report the findings to the respective residents with their personal information carefully protected. It also establishes a system of dispatching physicians on a rotation basis to health care providers in the region. For the establishment of a platform to coordinate community medical information, the project organizes the systematic digitization and networking of medical information in the local hospitals, and as a result, create a database uniforming medical records in the region while preventing patient records from being lost ever again because of a possible disaster in future.
We believe that the project will ultimately help to secure and rotate medical practitioners in and to the Tohoku disaster area, promote industry-academic partnerships, create employment in medical related fields, and restore the medical system in the disaster area.
The Tohoku Medical Megabank Project is a part of the national project to reconstruct Tohoku area. It aims to become a centripetal force for the reconstruction of the entire Tohoku region by developing the genome biobank project. The necessity of such biobank project had been pointed out in recent years. With the combination of medical information and genome information, Tohoku Medical Megabank Project is constructing an exceptional biobank in the Tohoku region which contributes to the restoration of medical services in the disaster area and revitalizes related industries.
Tohoku University School of Medicine has fulfilled a central role in dispatching medical practitioners to the Tohoku area, in particular, Miyagi Prefecture. Similar to other former imperial universities, Tohoku University in general focuses its efforts in research. However, given also that no other university had a medical school in Miyagi Prefecture, Tohoku University continues to offer more support to the community medical system to meet the local demand. This project is intended to further improve the quality of medical services in Tohoku area by directly participating in the rebuilding of the community medical system and creating an advanced medical base from a long-term perspective.