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For patients and their families

Researches on Diseases

The following answers are based on information available as of October, 2015.


Q

Does CiRA make iPS cells using cells from patients?

A

Yes, since receiving approval from our institutional review board in June 2008, the laboratory of CiRA Deputy Director Tatsutoshi Nakahata has begun generating and conducting research on disease-specific iPS cells. The research plan involves the derivation of iPS cells from somatic cells contributed by patients suffering from diseases including Duchenne’s muscular dystrophy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Fanconi’s anemia. CiRA labs have generated iPS cells from patients with other diseases, and some of them have been distributed to other research institutes through RIKEN BioResource Center.

Q

What type of research will be done with patient-derived iPS cells?

A

iPS cells generated from somatic cells donated by patients can be induced to differentiate into cell types of interest, which may make it possible to recreate disease states in vitro, enabling the study of disease mechanisms. Such cells may also be useful in studying drug efficacy and side effects, which may contribute to the development of new drugs.

Q

Are there other research institutions apart from Kyoto University that are engaged in research based on generating iPS cells from patient cells?

A

Yes, at research institutions in and outside Japan, research using disease-specific iPS cells is in progress with the cooperation of patients. In Japan, publicly sponsored iPS cell-related projects are ongoing, with the participating research institutions engaged in wide-ranging studies.

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