2018 Activity Report vol.31:Kyushu University

Activity Report of Open Application Course vol.31

Asian Young Researchers Learn about Japanese Healthcare Innovation

Report from Kyushu University

The Center for Clinical and Translational Research (CCTR) of Kyushu University Hospital and the Advanced Fusion Medicine Development Center of Kyushu University held international recruitment for six young researchers from Thailand, Mongolia, Taiwan, Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia, countries which seek to engage in international cooperation with Japan.

The purpose of the recruitment was to contribute to the cultivation of outstanding professionals in the medical field in Asia, as well as to construct a network of international cooperative bases. With participation from the young researchers, we held a joint session with academia, corporations, and organizations that promote medical innovation. The session was held over an eight-day period from September 9 to 16, 2018.

At Shin Nippon Biomedical Laboratories, Ltd.

Prior to coming to Japan for the joint session, we had the visiting students submit reports on corporations, etc., involved in holding the joint session. This preparation ensured that the students could engage in fruitful discussion during their limited time in Japan.

On the first day of the program, a kick-off meeting was held at Kyushu Univ. The visiting students introduced their own research and presented their aspirations while participating in the program.

A student gives a self-introduction during the kick-off meeting at Kyushu Univ.

During the following six days, joint discussions were held at the following organizations (listed in the order that discussions were held).

  • Kyushu Univ.
  • 1) Explanation for the mission of Kyushu Univ. as clinical and intermediate COE
  • 2) Molecular and Cell Processing Center (GMP-compliant facilities)
  • 3) Telemedicine Development Center of Asia
  • 4) Operating room for endoscopic surgery
  • Kyushu Factory of Sawai Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
  • Shin Nippon Biomedical Laboratories, Ltd. (SNBL) Drug Safety Research Laboratories
  • Nobelpharma Co., Ltd.
  • Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development(AMED)
  • CellSeed Inc.
  • Eisai Co., Ltd.
  • Noto Plant of Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

Reporting session, overall discussion, and tours of laboratories at Kyushu Univ.

In particular, through discussions with professionals who work on the frontlines, students were able to deepen their understanding of fundamental research related to phases spanning from development to manufacturing and sales of medical drugs, non-clinical testing, clinical research, medical sites, and funding that supports development.

Discussion at AMED

In terms of fundamental research, we received introductions of R&D systems and introductions of research related to pharmaceutical products under development at pharmaceutical companies—information which is not normally disclosed. Company representatives engaged in active discussion with the visiting students. Furthermore, in regards to non-clinical testing and clinical testing, the students learned about Japanese regulations related to required data quality, testing management systems, and ethics for animal/human testing. The students also discussed related topics with researchers. This enabled students to review mechanisms for supporting medical innovation in Japan and deepen their understanding of those mechanisms. The visiting students engaged in lively debate on topics including religious restrictions, restrictions on the movement of animals and plants, issues related to the Cartagena Protocol, and the possibility of expansion into joint research.

Lecture about company profile at Nobelpharma Co., Ltd.
Lecture about company profile at Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

I would like to express my profound gratitude to SAKURA Science for supporting the program, to the corporations and organizations who cooperated to hold the joint sessions, and to the Japan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association for their additional support. I would also like to thank past participants in SAKURA Science for cooperating in selecting the visiting students.