The first Asia Human Cell Atlas meeting held in Okinawa

December 18, 2017 NEWS

From November 30th to December 1st, 2017, the first Human Cell Atlas Asia meeting was held in Okinawa, Japan. A group of 51 scientists from twenty-three national institutes and universities across Japan, South Korea, Singapore, India – convened at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) to establish a coordinated framework for the Human Cell Atlas in Asia.

Human Cell Atlas (HCA) is an international consortium led by world leading research institutes including Broad Institute (USA), Wellcome Trust/Sanger Institute (UK), Karolinska Institute (Sweden), and RIKEN (Japan). The project is aiming to create comprehensive reference maps of all human cells as a basis for understanding human health and disease. The consortium strongly emphasizes human diversity - defined by gender, genetics, geography, environment and age. This HCA Asia meeting in Okinawa was the first step to bring together leading scientists and funders (including Chan Zuckerberg Initiative CZI) to make the Asian Human Cell Atlas a reality.

The meeting was welcomed by Dr. Piero Carninci of RIKEN Center for Life Science Technologies (CLST), and the global HCA efforts were introduced by Dr. Jay W. Shin (CLST), who are both organizing committee members of the HCA consortium.

Dr. Carninci said “This is our great first-step to unite Asian countries with HCA network. We will strongly enhance this activity more to create Asia-specific atlas in the future”.

The meeting covered a wide range of relevant topics including diseases relevant in Asia, cancer, imaging and genomics technologies, stem cells, ageing, and collaborative projects.

The detailed summary of the meeting can be found here.