I hope you are doing well. We thank you for your support. Due to the favorable weather, I assume you enjoyed cherry blossoms this year longer than usual. When I see cherry blossoms, I always feel wonderful, and the idea is conveyed to me that Spring has come, and I become newly committed to do my best again in the new fiscal year. I wonder if cherry blossoms bring something special not only to me, but to many of you as well.
The genome drug discovery forum was founded in 1998. Inheriting the spirit of Dr. Teruhisa Noguchi, who passed away after a difficult return to home on the day of the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011, Dr. Kenichi Arai led the Forum under the title “Genome Drug Discovery and Medical Forum”. During his tenure, its scope spread beyond drug discovery to a variety of medical therapies, including iPS cell therapy.
Unfortunately, Dr. Arai suddenly passed away in April 2018. A group of members who felt that the Forum has brought significant benefits to genome drug discovery and medicine over the last 20 years reestablished the forum under the new title “Genome Drug Discovery & Emergence Forum”. These members intend to terminate its conventional style and develop more technology driven methods for contributing to the advancement of information science.
As mentioned in the aim statement of the new forum, emergence (So-hatsu) means the overall result exceeds the expected outcome, and is not simply the sum of the added parts. We added “emergence” to the forum name to evoke the concept of synergistic innovation from the gathering of experts in different fields beyond the sum of their individual contributions. This is an intellectual variation on the concept of metal alloys possessing entirely different properties than the individual metals (Gaku-yu). Dr. Noguchi used this word in his definition of the science of drug discovery. Gathering many people from many different fields may lead to unexpected discoveries and ideas that will contribute to drug discovery and medical therapy. In this way, we hope to provide a vital stimulus to scientific endeavors in Japan.
Kouji Matsushima, MD, PhD
The Representative of Genome Drug Discovery & Emergence Forum
Professor, Tokyo University of Science
Emeritus Professor, The University of Tokyo