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School researchers attend significant stem cell symposium event in Japan

18 December 2018

Japan Symposium 18
Vision Sciences Researchers at the Osaka University Symposium including Professor Kohji Nishida and Professor Andrew Quantock both seated centre.

On December 7, researchers from the School of Optometry and Vision Sciences attended a research symposium at Osaka University as part of a four-year BBSRC-funded Japan Partnering Award. The event examined advances in human iPS (induced pluripotent stem cell) technology to aid our understanding of eye development and future treatments.

The four-year partnering award links leading researchers, Andrew Quantock of the School of Optometry and Vision Sciences and Professor Kohji Nishida, Chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology at Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine. The award was set up to increase research collaboration with overseas institutes to promote the exchange of scientists and to provide access to a greater variety of facilities.

The event was highly successful and comprised presentations by researchers from Cardiff University, Newcastle University and University College London alongside colleagues from Osaka University, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine and the Japanese government (RIKEN) research institute in Kobe.

Professor Nishida is a collaborator of Professor Shinya Yamanaka in nearby Kyoto University who was awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize for his role in the discovery of iPS cells, and discussions at the symposium indicated exciting promise for future UK-Japan links and advances in the fields of stem cell biology as applied to vision sciences.

Professor Andrew Quantock praised the symposium and said “Osaka University hosted an excellent event and it was an honour to be involved with such a vast array of leading vision sciences researchers. I am hopeful that this symposium will foster collaborations between the UK and Japan-based researchers with shared interests in stem cell biology.”

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