Kanagawa Academy of Science and Technology (KAST) is a regional non-profit R&D organization of Kanagawa Prefecture. It is located at the Kanagawa Science Park in the city of Kawasaki, between Tokyo and Yokohama. With an endowment of 5 billion Yen (~ 40 mill. €), its staff of 125 in fiscal year (FY) 2008 achieved a revenue of 2 billion Yen (~ 16 mill. €) within 3 main areas of activities: R&D projects, technology education, targeted at the regional industry and analytical services.
The focus of R&D is on energy and the environment, optronics and information technology, nanotechnology materials and biotechnology. While KAST projects are also eligible for national funding, e. g., through the Ministry of Education and Science(1) (MEXT), joint R&D projects with the industry play a key role. Thus, by the end of FY 2008, over 300 joint projects with more than 150 companies had been completed during KAST’s 20 years’ existence, licenses had been provided to over 70 companies, and 9 venture companies were established. For instance, Netech Inc. (Non-invasive Prenatal Diagnosis System and KytoGel), Institute of Microchemical Technology, Optical Comb, Inc., LivTech, Inc. etc, as bio-related ventures. The number of scientific publications by now exceeds well over 2000, and about 10 % of the patent applications, with a total of over 800, have been internationally filed.Major technologies developed at KAST are novel photocatalysts, nanohole arrays and chip devices. As an example, titanium dioxide catalysts were widely investigated. In combination with sunlight, they have led to a wide range of novel equipment for water and air purification and to superhydrophilic surfaces which are self-cleaning.
The following projects are carrying out in the bio-related fields:
1) On-chip Molecular Cell Phenomics Establishment of a New Single Cell Based Genome / Proteome Analysis Method (displayed below)Project Leader: Dr. Kenji Yasuda (Prof. of Tokyo Medical & Dental Univ.) Investigation period: 2008-2012
2) Solid Acid EcocatalystBioethanol Production from Biomass by Solid AcidProject Leader: Dr. Michikazu Hara (Prof. of Tokyo Institute of Technology)Investigation period: 2007-2011
3) Bio Micro SystemHybridization of Biomaterial Machineries with Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS)Project Leader: Dr. Shoji Takeuchi (Assoc. Prof. of Univ. of Tokyo)Investigation period: 2009-2013
4) Next Generation Bioceramics Development of Paste-like Artificial Bone Using Chelate-bonding of inositol phosphateProject Leader: Dr. Mamoru Aizawa (Prof. of Meiji Univ.)Investigation period: 2009-2013
5) Food Safety and Reliability(Assessment of Food Functions and Safety by Nutrigenomics, i.e., Comprehensive analysis of a series of genomes induced by food ingestion), Project Leader: Dr. Keiko Abe (Prof. of Univ. of Tokyo) Investigation period: 2009-2011
1Full name: Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. MEXT supervises education and research at all national and many private universities in Japan. However, major industrial R&D initiatives are also led by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI). Thus, due to the differences in the central organization of Japan and the federal organization of Germany, the roles of the German Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF) and MEXT are not equivalent.