Messages from Dean


Graduate School of Medicine as a center of life science research, education and human resource development

Medical science, one of the biological sciences, is characterized by its focus on humans. A medical student, therefore, should have not just knowledge of biology but also a high level of bioethics. The medical faculty is an undergraduate department that teaches medicine, and it is also an institution that fosters doctors and health and medical professionals. In the era of the so-called 100-year life in Japan, importance is given to not just a longer lifespan but also a prolonged healthy lifespan, which encompasses both mental and physical health. Medical graduates who study medicine work at the center of a society with a declining birthrate and increasing number of older people; they should play more important social roles.

The research areas of the Graduate School of Medicine are included in the life sciences area. The major difference with other life sciences Graduate School and research institutes is that we are focusing on "humans" as our research subjects among life and organisms. There are four major research areas for human-targeted research, and the research methods are large and diverse, so our research department has four majors: medical sciences, disability sciences, health sciences, public health. We are recruiting graduate students for each major widely.

Many of our graduates play an active role on the international front. For example, research to elucidate the mechanism by which cells involved in immunity proliferate and differentiate led to the discovery of a key molecule and furthermore found themselves as a cause of a severe immunodeficiency syndrome in children. The research team bred mice whose target gene was genetically altered and found that human cells could be engrafted in the mice. These mice are now used in laboratories around the world. The Tohoku Medical Mega Bank Project, which is deeply involved in the Graduate School of Medicine, finished decoding human genetic information consisting of approximately 3 billion nucleotide sequences, decoding of thousands of Japanese people and decoding Japanese standard gene sequences. This large-scale body of results will be used as a basis for genome medicine for Japanese people, which can enable individualized prevention of disease onset and side effects, among others.

In this way, by closely collaborating with other life researchers on campus, such as the Tohoku Medical Megabank Organization, Institute of Development, Aging and Cancer (IDAC), Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering, International Research Institute of Disaster Science (IRIDeS), Graduate School of Life Science, Tohoku University Hospital, Graduate School of Dentistry, and Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences & Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, we are disseminating the world's leading research results and continuing to produce human resources. Our strength lies in our diverse teachers, top-notch equipment and a free research system that crosses the boundaries of scientific fields.

Dean, Graduate School of Medicine, Tohoku University
Professor, Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine

Specialist areas: Gynecology, Obstetrics