Outline of Advanced Animal Model Support
|Mutsuhiro Takekawa, MD, PhD
(Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo)
Principal Investigator for Advanced Animal Model Support (AdAMS)
In recent years, the rapid technological and mechanical advances in the field of life science (e.g., genome-editing technologies, animal model establishment, bioimaging, physiological and behavioral analyses, comprehensive molecular profiling, and data and information sciences) have opened the door to a comprehensive understanding of the molecular basis of biological phenomena and human diseases. However, at the same time, this situation also makes it difficult for individual scientists to efficiently deal with and exploit such new advanced technologies. To solve this problematic situation in the life science fields, "Platforms for Advanced Technologies and Research Resources" was launched in fiscal year (FY) 2022 under the new framework of the Grant-in-Aid for Transformative Research Areas. This project is supported by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), Japan, and has succeeded to the previous MEXT programs "Support Programs for Three Fields in Life Sciences (Cancer, Genome and Brain Sciences) (FY2012-2015)" and "Platforms for Advanced Technologies and Research Resources (FY2016-2021)".
"Platforms for Advanced Technologies and Research Resources" aims to establish life science research support platforms for biomedical researchers, who have various needs to conduct their academic research. It also aims to promote communication and collaborations between scientists in different fields, and to train young scientists, thereby contributing to the advancement of life sciences in Japan and worldwide. To this end, this program provides advanced technical support and state-of-the-art research facilities for researchers in a wide variety of scientific fields. In such circumstances, "Advanced Animal Model Support (AdAMS)" was established as one of the platforms in this program. In particular, we provide animal model construction and analysis support, and molecular profiling support by establishing a cooperation network among the core institutions with cutting-edge technologies and state-of-the-art facilities (including inter-university research institutes and Joint Usage/Research Centers), collaborative institutions, and the relevant institutions.
Objectives of the Research Support
Life science research using animal models is essential to clarify whether the fundamental research results and theories obtained in vitro or in cultured cells are applicable to highly organized tissues and individuals, and whether they are involved in the etiology and pathophysiology of diseases. Therefore, to achieve significant research results, it is desirable that scientists should rapidly generate animal models and appropriately assess their phenotypic and behavioral properties. We thus provide support for the construction of animal models using advanced genetic engineering and embryo manipulation techniques, and for analyses of their physiological and pathological phenotypes at both macro and micro levels using cutting-edge technologies and facilities. We also provide support for conducting comprehensive molecular profiling analyses that elucidate the molecular basis of the observed phenotypes in animal models.
In closing, we sincerely hope that life science researchers will develop and expand their research projects by actively taking advantage of the resources in our AdAMS platform, thereby disseminating their research results to the global scientific community. We also hope that they will promote a dialogue with the general public about science and technology through enlightening the public on the generated results and contents of their scientific work.
I would like to thank all general visitors of this web site for their understanding and support for researchers and their research activities. I hope the contents of this web site gives the readers insights into current status and achievements of life science research in Japan.