Sysmex Corporation (HQ: Kobe, Japan: Chairman and CEO: Hisashi Ietsugu), the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe1 (Location: Kobe, Japan; President: Tasuku Honjo) and Kyoto University (Location: Kyoto, Japan; President: Juichi Yamagiwa) have begun joint research related to the Drug Discovery Innovation Program2: Developing Technologies for Diagnosing Immunological Diseases, which the Foundation is promoting.
Through joint research, the three organizations aim to create a diagnostic system that will enable the early detection of autoimmune disease3 and chronic inflammatory disease.
As aggressive early-stage treatment is effective against rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases, tests are required to detect such diseases before symptoms appear, or to identify abnormalities at an early stage before they become severe as diseases progress. Attention is also focusing on attempts to use multifaceted analysis to determine the immune status that characterize individual patients.
Sysmex, the Foundation, and Kyoto University have begun a three-year joint-research project, which commenced on April 1, 2018, with Foundation President Tasuku Honjo serving as the program director. The project aims to establish a new method for analyzing the state of the immune function and use this method to develop an early diagnosis system as part of the Drug Discovery Innovation Program: Developing Technologies for Diagnosing Immunological Diseases, which the Foundation is promoting.
The aim of this joint research is to develop a diagnostic system comprising instruments, reagents and software, by analyzing the status of cellular and humoral immunity by utilizing molecular imaging, cell measurement, and highly sensitive protein measurement technologies to enable the early detection of autoimmune and chronic inflammatory diseases.
The Foundation and Kyoto University will search for biomarkers to serve in the early-stage detection of immunological disease. Sysmex will take a multifaceted approach combining its proprietary gene, cell, and protein measurement platforms and help to advance the joint research, leveraging our expertise to analyze the immune status of individual patients based on the platforms’ test results.
By promoting this joint research, Sysmex, the Foundation, and Kyoto University aim to contribute to the advancement of healthcare through the creation of a new diagnostic system that enables the early detection of autoimmune and chronic inflammatory diseases.
- Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe:
A central agency supporting the Kobe Biomedical Innovation Cluster, this foundation serves an overall coordination function, promoting collaboration and fusion among industry, government, academia, and the medical community. At the same time, the foundation supports R&D and clinical applications contributing to the realization of leading-edge healthcare and the creation of next-generation healthcare systems. Through these activities, the foundation’s fundamental mission is to contribute to the creation of breakthrough healthcare technologies and the formation of a medical industry cluster. In April 2018, the organization changed its name from the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation to the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe.
- Drug Discovery Innovation Program:
This program, being proposed to pharmaceutical and other companies in Japan and overseas, involves the gathering and collaboration of R&D functions, including research institutes and infrastructure, at the Kobe Biomedical Innovation Cluster. Through a system of collaborative research with the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe, the program provides a centralized research environment, including the researchers and facilities necessary for development during drug discovery and clinical development. To date, three joint research agreements have been signed under this program.
- Autoimmune disease:
This general term describes a disease in which the immune cells whose normal function is to recognize and repel the invasion of foreign substances into the body attack substances within the body itself.
*Information contained in the press release is current as of the date of the announcement, but may be subject to change without prior notice.