Home  > Introduction > Division of Molecular Therapy, Advanced Clinical Research Center

Division of Molecular Therapy, Advanced Clinical Research Center
Other items : Department of Hematology/Oncology

The main theme of our research is toward the development of novel therapeutic options against intractable hematological disorders including leukemia and lymphoma. For this purpose, we are making every effort to master the mechanisms of normal and neoplastic hematopoiesis on the basis of molecular and cellular biology.

(1) Preclinical study of therapeutic gene transfer mediated by various viral vectors:
We have two main research projects in this field. One is a murine therapeutic model of tumor vaccine secreting GM-CSF (GVAX) in combination with nonmyeloablative allogeneic HSCT. The other is a human experimental model of ribozyme technology for inactivation of leukemogenic fusion mRNA such as BCR-ABL.

(2) Preclinical study of targeted drug delivery using various cell-targeting strategies and novel molecular target agents:
We are developing various cell-targeting strategies using cytokines, adhesion molecules as well as monoclonal antibodies. PEG-liposome has been applied for this purpose. In addition, we have made two types of cytokine derivatives by genetic engineering for preclinical study. We are also studying anti-leukemic effects of a novel signal transduction inhibitor and anti-GvHD effects of a novel cytokine synthesis inhibitor for the future clinical trial.

(3) Analysis of tumor stem cells and search for molecular targets for their elimination:
Cure of malignant tumors requires eradication of tumor stem cells. As a representative model for tumor stem cells, we are studying the identification and characterization of leukemia stem cells using cell tracking strategies and flow cytometry.

(4) Analysis of normal and neoplastic hematopoiesis based on their interaction with microenvironments:
Not only normal but also neoplastic hematopoiesis can be supported by the specific interaction between stem/progenitor cells and bone marrow microenvironments. To simulate this cell to cell contact in vitro, we are using a co-culture system in which stem/progenitor cells are overlaid on the layer of hematopoiesis-supporting stroma cells. This co-culture system is applied for determination of drug sensitivities and gene transfer effects.

HomeTo the top of this page
Last update : 15 August, 2005
Reproduction or republication is strictly prohibited without prior written permission.