Message from the Director

Director of the BMIRC, Hiroyuki KURATA

The Japanese medical expenditure (currently at US$400 billion) increases every year, and its growth rate is higher than that of the gross domestic product (GDP). Considering transitions toward an aging society, it is readily expected to increase further. Thus, the Japanese people definitely face a serious financial crisis. Therefore, it is critically important to attain medical innovation to reduce medical expenses while achieving high-quality medical care.

In the 21st century, next-generation sequencers enabled the human genome to be decoded at a surprisingly high speed. Furthermore, the production of biological and medical data has become more rapid owing to the development of systemic high-throughput technology. Bioinformatics and systems biology have emerged, facilitating interdisciplinary research and development among medicine, informatics, and engineering. A worldwide science and technology policy would accelerate the extensive application of basic sciences to medical and health innovation.

For over 20 years, we have been extensively applying bioinformatics, systems biology, and bioengineering to medical research and development at the School of Computer Science and Systems Engineering, first founded in Japan. To accelerate our research and develop it sustainably, we established the Biomedical Informatics R&D Center (BMIRC) in 2012. This center is concerned with development in the interdisciplinary areas of medicine, informatics, and engineering through the collaboration of medical schools, hospitals, companies, and the government, and promotes the transaction between education and research among Asian countries. We highly appreciate your help and cooperation.

Director of the BMIRC, Hiroyuki KURATA