We reported the world’s first generation of mouse iPS cells in 2006 and the generation of human iPS cells in 2007. Our team also reported the establishment of mouse iPS cells using plasmid DNA vectors in 2008, one of the first methods to generate such cells without requiring gene insertion. Many researchers around the world are now working on studies with the use of iPS cells, which may one day find applications in regenerative medicine and as a research tool in drug discovery. In order for such applications to become a reality, however, it will be necessary to establish optimal protocols for the generation of iPS cells by deepening our understanding of the mechanisms that underlie the reprogramming of differentiated cells into an undifferentiated state. The Department of Reprogramming Science plays a role in laying down a solid foundation that will be essential for iPS cell applications, by solving problems in the establishment of optimal methods for the generation of iPS cells. We will dedicate our work to advancing fundamental iPS cell research by coordinating the efforts of all the research groups in this department.