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Research: Smash Childhood Cancer: Research Participants Collapse   Expand  
 

Research Participants


Smash Childhood Cancer is a global research collaboration, led by Dr. Akira Nakagawara at the Saga Medical Center in Koseikan, Japan.

Saga Medical Center KOSEIKAN

Life Science Research Institute
Saga, Japan

KOSEIKAN is a hospital that aims to improve the quality of life and provide healthcare to all through clinical studies, research, and patient education.

The Life Science Research Institute within Koseikan includes a number of laboratories working on molecular biology and genetics of pediatric cancers. One of the key areas of focus is the identification of molecular targets to aid in the development of new drugs.

Research Team

Akira Nakagawara, MD, PhD

CEO, Saga Medical Center KOSEIKAN
CEO, Saga International External Beam Radiotherapy Foundation, Saga, Japan
Smash Childhood Cancer Principle Investigator

Dr. Akira Nakagawara is a pediatric oncologist and molecular biologist, and previously worked as a pediatric surgeon. He is a winner of several prizes including the Princess Takamatsu Cancer Research Fund Prize in 2008 and the Japan Cancer Society Prize in 2013. He held a number of domestic and international congresses as a president.

Dr. Nakagawara is also a CEO of the Saga Heavy Ion Medical Accelerator in Tosu (Saga HIMAT) that treats cancer patients with carbon particle beam radiation. Dr. Nakagawara is also President Emeritus of the Chiba Cancer Center. His specialties include the identification of molecular targets from high-risk solid tumors in children, and the screening and development of new drugs targeting the identified molecules.

The KOSEIKAN team is comprised of Dr. Hideki Izumi, Dr. Yuanyuan Li and Mr. Atsushi Nagatomo, under the direction of Dr. Akira Nakagawara. This team mainly works on biological screening of the candidate small chemical compounds identified for further drug development. Mr. Nagatomo helps to make a database for the in silico (by computer) screened candidate compounds and their biological data.

Hideki Izumi, PhD

Head, Laboratory of Molecular Medicine
Life Science Research Institute, Saga Medical Center KOSEIKAN

Dr. Hideki Izumi is the Head of the Laboratory of Molecular Medicine, Life Science Research Institute, Saga Medical Center KOSEIKAN. He is an expert scientist with over 25 years of experience in the field of Molecular Oncology, and his main interest is to understand the mechanisms of asymmetric cell division of neuroblastoma (stem) cells as well as drug development to cure patients with pediatric cancer.

Yuanyuan Li, PhD

Research Fellow
Life Science Research Institute, Saga Medical Center KOSEIKAN

Dr. Yuanyuan Li received her PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in March 2004, at Fukushima Medical University Graduate School of Medicine, Japan. She then joined Dr. Nakagawara’s laboratory at the Chiba Cancer Center Research Institute. Her research focuses on the molecular mechanism of tumorigenesis and spontaneous regression of neuroblastoma, as well as the development of innovative therapeutics for neuroblastoma, which is one of the most common pediatric malignant solid tumors.

Atsushi Nagatomo

Vice Head, Department of Medical Information
Saga Medical Center KOSEIKAN

Mr. Atsushi Nagatomo works as an expert of medical information and applies innovative development of new systems to improve hospital management. He is also interested in forming a regional network of practical medicine through the ICT system, and in establishing clinical databases.

Collaborators

Tyuji Hoshino, PhD

Associate Professor
Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Department of Physical Chemistry
Chiba University, Japan

Dr. Hoshino received his PhD from Waseda University, Japan. After three years as a Research Associate at Waseda University, he was appointed as a faculty member of the Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Chiba University, Japan. Dr. Hoshino’s key role in the project is to prepare the input data required to generate research tasks for World Community Grid volunteers.

Godfrey Chi-Fung Chan, MD, DMD, MSc

Tsao Yen-Chow Endowed Professor of Pediatrics
Head & Chief of Service
Department of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine
The University of Hong Kong, China

Dr. Chan is a pediatric oncologist and researcher focused on translational medical research and clinical trials. He has earned several International Awards (ANR, SIOP, ASPR, Endeavor Executive Award-Australian Government) for his clinical and laboratory research works on childhood neurogenic tumors and stem cells biology. He is currently the Continental Chairman (Africa, Asia and Australia) of Advance Neuroblastoma Research and Executive Committee Member of SIOPEN (European Neuroblastoma) group.

Dr. Chan is also the Director of Molecular Laboratory for Traditional Chinese Medicine (New Drug Screening for Immunology & Cancer) & Deputy Director of the Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine Consortium (Clinical Application of Mesenchymal Stem Cells), The University of Hong Kong.

Dr. Chan's specialty is the screening and development of new drugs targeting known or newly defined molecules (i.e. beta-catenin).

Ching C. Lau, MD, PhD, FAAP

Director, Hematology-Oncology Center
Connecticut Children's Medical Center
Professor, Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine
Head, Division of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology
University of Connecticut School of Medicine

Dr. Lau is a pediatric oncologist and researcher focused on developing genomic medicine in pediatric oncology. His research interests include the molecular biology of pediatric brain and bone tumors and the clinical applications of genomic technologies. He is a strong advocate for team science research in academia and is experienced in leading National Cancer Institute (NCI) funded multi-disciplinary teams of research, including being the principal investigator of the Director’s Challenge Project on osteosarcoma and the Children’s Oncology Group project on genome-based prognostic markers of ependymoma, as well as co-principal investigator of the project on the molecular taxonomy of medulloblastoma and a member of the Steering Committee of the NCI’s Strategic Partnering to Evaluate Cancer Signatures (SPECS) Program and the NCI Therapeutically Applicable Research to Generate Effective Treatments (TARGET) Consortium. In addition, he is a key investigator in the Stand Up to Cancer Pediatric Immunogenomics Dream Team. He was also the Principal Investigator of the Genotyping Core for the NCI-funded International Gliogene Consortium.

Dr. Lau's specialty is the development of new biomarkers and targeted therapies for pediatric brain and bone tumors including craniopharyngioma (beta catenin) and osteosarcoma.

Yasuhiro Yamada, PhD

Professor, Laboratory of Stem Cell Oncology, Department of Life Science Frontiers, Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA), Kyoto University

Dr. Yasuhiro Yamada is a Professor at the Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA), Kyoto University, Japan. He was qualified as a pathologist from The Japanese Society of Pathology. He did his post-doctoral research at Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he investigated the role of DNA methylation on the development of colon cancer. He took up his current position in 2010. He is currently trying to use iPS (induced pluripotent stem) cell technology as a tool to actively modify epigenetic regulation of cancer cells, aiming to dissect the role of epigenetic regulations on cancer cells, which could be a potential therapeutic target for cancer. Particularly, he focuses on epigenetic regulation of pediatric solid tumors and applies the understanding to develop a novel therapeutic strategy for pediatric cancers.