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The UTokyo NY Conference 2018

“The UTokyo NY Conference 2018” hosted by the University of Tokyo (UTokyo) New York Office, Inc., and co-hosted by the Institute of Medical Science (IMS) and Institute of Industrial Science (IIS), was held at the Nippon Club Tower in New York on Saturday, November 3, 2018. Many people came from universities and research institutions in the United States, and companies and organizations in various fields to attend this conference.

The conference opened with opening remarks by Prof. Yoshinori Murakami, Dean of IMS and Dr. Yuichiro Kuwama, Vice President of the UTokyo NY Office, followed by the introduction of each institute by Dean Murakami (IMS), and Deputy Director Katsuyuki Fukutani (IIS).

Dean Yoshinori
Murakami (IMS)
Dr. Yuichiro Kuwama
(Vice President of the UTokyo NY Office)

At the lecture, Project Professor Hiroshi Kiyono of IMS, talked about the development and clinical application of the next generation oral vaccine (MucoRice) using rice under the title “Rice became a vaccine”. Subsequently, Professor Yuji Yamanashi of IMS gave a lecture entitled “Targeting neuromuscular synapses as a new therapeutic approach for muscle weakness and atrophy”. This lecture was about the development of a new gene therapy for neuromuscular diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Prof. Hiroshi Kiyono
Prof. Yuji Yamanashi

In the second part after the break, Professor Thomas Zwaka of Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai gave a lecture entitled “The unreasonable effectiveness of pluripotent stem cells: mechanism and mechanics” highlighting the effectiveness of pluripotent stem cells that has received much attention recently. Next, Professor Miriam Merad of Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai gave a presentation titled “Harnessing the tumor microenvironment to enhance cancer care” to introduce the cutting edge data on cancer microenvironment and cancer immunotherapy.

Prof. Thomas Zwaka
(Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai)
Prof. Miriam Merad
(Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai)

Finally, Project Professor Tadatsugu Taniguchi of IIS, spoke on “The role of dead cell-drived molecules in the progression of inflammatory disease and cancer: implications for the development of new therapeutic approaches.” His talk focused on the development of new treatments for inflammatory diseases and cancers.

Each lecture greatly stimulated the attendees, and the question and answer time never seemed enough to satisfy the lively exchanges.

Finally, this successful conference was concluded with the closing remarks by the Deputy Director of IIS, Prof. Fukutani.

Prof. Tadatsugu
Taniguchi (IIS)
Deputy Director
Katsuyuki Fukutani (IIS)

Many attendees also participated in the reception following the conference, and exchanges were fostered that cross not only research discipline boundaries, but national boundaries as well. Amid such meaningful exchanges, further utilization of the UTokyo New York Office is expected in the future.

Group Photo