CiRA Reporter

The Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA) publishes a quarterly newsletter in which our members contribute an essay on current bioethical issues for readers unfamiliar with the field.



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Relaxing the 14-day rule

CiRA Reporter Vol.27
July 29, 2021
Tsutomu Sawai
This past May, the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) revised its guidelines for the first time in five years. Among the changes was a relaxation of the “14-day rule,” which prohibits a human embryo from being cultured past 14 days.

Engaging dialogue

CiRA Reporter Vol.26
April 30, 2021
Mika Suzuki
At least once every year, the Uehiro Research Division for iPS Cell Ethics visits junior high schools to directly teach students about iPS cells. (Since the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been conducting these events remotely.) These programs include lessons on the basic science, but they also include discussions on relevant ethical issues.

Peer-review and the COVID-19 Pandemic

CiRA Reporter Vol.25
January 29, 2021
Kazuki Ide
The publication of peer-reviewed papers is the primary way through which scientists publicly share their research findings. Before this happens, other experts will review the paper and decide whether the paper should be published (i.e. peer review).

The Fashion of Ethics

CiRA Reporter Vol.24
October 29, 2020
Jusaku Minari
In one of his books, the philosopher Kiyokazu Washida introduces the new potentials or implications of words. For example, he writes about the Japanese word “sara,” which roughly means “new” in English.

Corona Virus and Regenerative Medicine

CiRA Reporter Vol.23
July 31, 2020
Misao Fujita
The pandemic caused by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has caused changes to daily lives throughout the world. These changes have led to an urgency for new drugs and vaccines.

Patient and Public Involvement (PPI)

CiRA Reporter Vol.22
April 30, 2020
Kayo Takashima
A new initiative is giving greater consideration to patient experiences and opinions in future medical treatments.

The History of Informed Consent

CiRA Reporter Vol.21
January 30, 2020
Taichi Hatta
For new drugs and medical treatments to reach the market, they must be first tested for their safety and efficacy on a number of human volunteers in clinical trials. To perform the trials, the participating doctors and researchers must adequately explain to the volunteers the purpose and risk of the trial and receive agreement from the volunteers.

What is needed for social consensus

CiRA Reporter Vol.20
October 29, 2019
Kyoko Akatsuka
A major scientific or medical discovery will often be followed by experts on the topic expressing their opinions on television or in the newspapers. While these opinions are important, so too are those of the general public. This is especially true when the technology has the potential to greatly affect society’s values.

Relaxation of regulations for chimeric embryo research in Japan

CiRA Reporter Vol.19
July 30, 2019
Tsutomu Sawai
This past March 1, the Japanese government relaxed its regulation on chimeric embryo research, making it legally easier to create human organs in animals.

Sharing thoughts to a scientist you have never met

CiRA Reporter Vol.18
April 26, 2019
Mika Suzuki
In Japan, there is very strong support of iPS cell research and clinical application from the general public. Much of this support is attributed to a favourable approval rating CiRA Director Shinya Yamanaka.