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April 23, 2009

RIKEN Omics Science Center receives $17 million MEXT grant to expand sequencing capacity

RIKEN Omics Science Center (OSC) Director Yoshihide Hayashizaki, M.D., Ph.D., announces that OSC will further develop its sequencing capacity with the receipt of a new, single year, $17 million grant from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Japan (MEXT).

The OSC will update and expand its sequencing infrastructure and capacity with the grant. The budget was supplied as a core part of the "Cell Innovation Project" of MEXT. The project aims to understand cell function at the molecular level using next generation sequencing. The core parts of the project are the "sequence center" and the "data analysis center". OSC will be the sequencing center and National Institute of Genetics (NIG) will act as the data storage center. OSC and NIG have developed a strong relationship in data sharing through their activity in the Genome Network Project also funded by MEXT. Seven "advanced research programs" of the cell innovation project will conduct unique research focusing on cellular functions such as those related to cancer formation and developmental biology with close collaboration with those two centers. OSC will assume the role of Japan's primary national sequencing center under the strong leadership of Director Hayashizaki.