Japan's Takahashi Makes Nature's "Five to Watch" List in 2014
Tokyo, Dec. 19 (Jiji Press)--British science journal Nature has selected Japan's Masayo Takahashi, who has begun the world's first clinical research using induced pluripotent stem, or iPS, cells, as one of the "five to watch" scientists on the globe next year.
In the clinical research launched in August, Takahashi, leader of the project at the Riken Center for Developmental Biology in Kobe, western Japan, is aiming to create retinal pigment epithelium cells from iPS cells for transplantation to damaged tissues in the eyes of patients of age-related macular degeneration.
Age-related macular degeneration, a common cause of blindness, is an incurable disease that weakens eyesight by causing abnormal blood vessels in the retina.
Among the four other scientists is French mathematician Jean-Pierre Bourguignon, who is set to become the next president of the European Research Council.
Nature also chose this year's 10 key scientists in the world. They included Viktor Grokhovsky, a member of the Russian Academy of Sciences who played a major role in collecting a meteorite that fell to Earth in Russia in February.