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About
NIPS

Overview and History

OUTLINES OF INSTITUTE

Objective:
National Institute for Physiological Sciences (NIPS) is an Inter-university Research Institute for research and education on human physiology. NIPS researchers are investigating human body and brain functions as well as their mechanisms through joint studies with domestic and foreign scientists, and providing specialized techniques and large-scale equipment for shared use as well as education and training for graduate students and young scientists.
Organization:
NAOJ, NIFS, NIBB, NIPS and IMS were reorganized into NINS by reason of enforcement of the National University Corporation Law.
The NIPS currently comprises 4 departments, 18 divisions, 4 centers, 18 sections, Research Enhancement Strategy Office and Technical Division.
Joint Studies:
As an inter-university research institute, NIPS entertains proposals for joint studies from domestic and foreign physiological scientists. Applications from domestic and foreign scientists are reviewed and controlled by the inter-university ad hoc committee.
Graduate Programs:
The NIPS carries out two graduate programs.
1.Graduate University for Advanced Studies
The NIPS constitutes the Department of Physiological Sciences in the School of Life Science of the Graduate University for Advanced Studies. The University provides a five-year Ph. D. course, namely including both Master and Doctor courses, or a four-year Medical Science course. However, those who have completed a master's course in other universities or are qualified at an equivalent or higher level are eligible to apply for the three-year Ph. D. course which is consistent with Master course. The degree conferred on graduation is one of the three, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Doctor of Science (PhD) or Doctor of Medical Science (PhD).
2.Graduate Student Training Program
Graduate students enrolled in other universities and institutes are trained to conduct researches for fixed periods of time under the supervision of NIPS professors and associate professors.
Exchange Programs:
To activate international collaborations among physiological scientists in the Institute and foreign organizations, scientist exchange programs are conducted.
System management:
Management Council, Educational and Research Council and Board of Directors are established at NINS to inspect significant matters of management, education, research and administration.
Advisory Committee for Research and Management in NIPS advises the Director-General on important matters in management of the Institute.
Administration:
Administration of the institutes is managed at Okazaki Administration Office of NINS.

A SHORT HISTORY OF THE INSTITUTE

In 1960, many physiologists affiliated with the Physiological Society of Japan initiated a discussion on how to establish a central research institute for physiological sciences in this country.    In recent years, remarkable progress has been made in the life sciences throughout the world, particularly in the fields of molecular biology, cellular biology and physiology, and in areas concerning information processing and regulatory systems of higher animals. In view of these developments, there was a consensus among physiologists in Japan that a new type of research organization must be created, in parallel with the laboratories in universities, to pursue new approaches in the life sciences.
Through discussions among the physiologists, the following characteristies of such a new institute were considered to be of utmost importance.
1.Investigators from different fields should be able to collaborate on research projects in the life sciences with  minimal  restrictions.
2.Research communication among scientists from many fields should be closely coordinated.
3.Specialized, large-scale equipment required for multidisciplinary research, not routinely available in smaller laboratories of educational institutions, should be accessible, and proper training and maintenance should be provided. A Committee for the Foundation of a Physiological Institute was organized by Drs. MOTOKAWA K., KATSUKI Y., NATORI R., TOKIZANE T., INOUE A., UCHIZONO K., and many other leading physiologists in 1965. Thereafter, in order to establish such an institute, considerable effort was made by scientists and related government officials. The following time table describes the history leading to the foundation of the Institute:
 
Nov, 1967 The Science Council of Japan officially advised the then Prime Minister, SATO Eisaku, that the establishment of an institute for Physiological Sciences was important, and urgently necessary for the promotion of life sciences in Japan. 
The Science Council of the Monbusho (the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture) reported to the Minister of Education, Science and Culture that two institutes for scientific research of biological sciences, namely, the Institute for Physiological Sciences and the Institute for Basic Biology, should be established as early as possible.
May, 1976 The Preparing Office and the Research Council for the establishment of Institutes for Biological Sciences were opened in the Monbusho.
May, 1977 The Institute for Physiological Sciences (Director-General: Prof. UCHIZONO K.) was officially established which, together with the Institute for Basic Biology, constituted the National Center for Biological Sciences (President: Prof. KATSUKI Y.). Constituents of the Institute for Physiological Sciences at the time of  inauguration were as follows.

Department of molecular physiology 
Division of Ultrastructure Research 
Department of Cell physiology 
Division of Membrane Biology 
Department of Information physiology   
*Division of Neurobiology and Behavioral Genetics 
Special Facilities for Physiological Research
Technical Division

April, 1978

In the second year the following laboratories were added:
Department of Molecular physiology   
*Division of Intracellular Metabolism 
Department of Information physiology
Division of Neural Information 
Department of Biological Control System
Division of Neural Control

April, 1979

In the third year the following laboratories were added:
Department of Cell physiology   
Division of Correlative Physiology 
*Division of Active Transport 
Department of Biological Control System
*Division of Cognitive Neuroscience

April, 1980

The following were added in the fourth year:
Department of Information physiology
Division of Humoral Information 
*Division of Learning and Memory Research 
Research Facilities
Division of Experimental Animals

April, 1981 A new organization, Okazaki National Research Institutes, comprised of three independent institutes (Institute for Molecular Science, Institute for Physiological Sciences, and Institute for Basic Biology) was established. Previously, these institutes had been managed independently. However, on 14 April 1981, they were administratively amalgamated into one organization, and thereafter referred to collectively as the Okazaki National Research Institutes
April, 1982

The following was added:
Department of Molecular physiology   
Division of Neurochemistry

April, 1984

The following was added:
Department of Biological Control System 
Division of System Neurophysiology

April, 1985

Prof. EBASHI S. was elected the Director-General of the Institute.

Octo, 1988

The Graduate University for Advanced Studies was founded and in the Institute the  School of Life Sciences, Department of Physiological Sciences was established.

June, 1990

The following were added:
Department of Integrative Physiology   
Sensory and Motor Function Research Project
Higher Brain Function Project
*Autonomic Function Research Project

Dec, 1991

Prof. HAMA K. was elected the Director-General of the Institute.

April, 1997

Prof. SASAKI K. was elected the Director-General of the Institute.

April, 1998

The following were added:
Department of Cerebral Research 
Division of Cerebral Structure 
Division of Cerebral Circuitry 
Division of Cerebral Integration 
A part of facilities in the complex of Physiological Research Facilities was reformed to the Center for Brain Experiment.

April, 2000

Division of Experimental Animals was transferred to the Research Facilities as shown below.
Center for Integrative Bioscience
・Department of Strategic Methodology
・Department of Development, Differentiation 
and Regeneration
・Department of Bio-Environmental Science
Research Center for Computational Science
Center for Experimental Animals
Center for Radioisotope Facilities

April, 2003

Prof. MIZUNO N. was elected the Director-General of the Institute.
The following were added:
Department of Developmental Physiology
Division of Behavioral Development
Division of Homeostatic Development
Division of Reproductive/Endocrine Development
Division of Adaptation Development

April, 2004

Established National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS).
National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ), National Institute for Fusion Science (NIFS), National Institute for Basic Biology (NIBB), National Institute for Physiological Sciences (NIPS) and Institute for Molecular Science (IMS) were integrated and reorganized into NINS by reason of enforcement of the National University Corporation Law. 
In NIPS, Division of Neurochemistry in Department of Molecular Physiology was renamed to Division of Biophysics and Neurobiology, Division of Humoral Information in Department of Information Physiology was renamed to Division of Neural Signaling, Department of Biological Control System was renamed to Department of Integrative Physiology, Division of Cognitive Neuroscience was renamed to Division of Computational Neuroscience, and Center for Integrative Bioscience was renamed to Okazaki Institute for Integrative Bioscience, respectively. The Administration Bureau turned into Okazaki Administration Office of NINS

Nov, 2005

Division of Neurobiology and Behavioral Genetics was reformed to the Center for Genetic Analysis of Behavior.

April, 2007

Prof. OKADA Y. was elected the Director-General of the Institute.
The following were added:
Department of Molecular Physiology
Division of Nano-Structure Physiology
Department of Cell Physiology
Division of Cell Signaling
Department of Information Physiology
Division of Developmental Neurophysiology

April, 2008

Division of Active Transport in Department of Cell Physiology was renamed to Division of Neural Systematics.
The following were abolished:
Division of Learning and Memory Research
Center for Brain Experiment
The following were added:
Center for Multidisciplinary Brain Research
Supportive Center for Brain Research 
Center for Communication Networks

April, 2009

Division of Intracellular Metabolism was abolished
April, 2011 The following was added:
Section of Health and Safety Management
April, 2013 Prof. IMOTO K. was elected the Director-General of the
Institute

Octo, 2013

Research Enhancement Strategy Office was established.

Jan, 2014

The following were added:
Department of Information Physiology
Division of Cardiocirculatory Signaling
Center for Multidisciplinary Brain Research
Research Strategy for Brain Sciences Office

April, 2014

Division of Developmental Neurophysiology in Department of Information Physiology was renamed to Division of Visual Information Processing.
The following were abolished:
Department of Molecular Physiology
Division of Nano-Structure Physiology
Department of Cell physiology
Division of Correlative Physiology
Center for Communication Networks
Section of Communications and Public Liaison
April, 2016 The following were abolished :
 Department of Molecular Physiology
 Department of Cell Physiology
 Department of Information Physiology
 Department of Integrative Physiology
 Department of Cerebral Research
 Department of Developmental Physiology
 Center for Multidisciplinary Brain Research
 Division of Computational Neuroscience
 Division of Adaptation Development
The following were renamed :
  Division of Cerebral Structure to Division of Cell
Structure
  Division of Sensori-Motor Integration to Division of
Integrative Physiology
  Division of Homeostatic Development to Division of
Homeostatic Development
The following were added :
 Department of Molecular and Cellular Physiology
  Division of Biophysics and Neurobiology
  Division of Neurobiology and Bioinformatics
  Division of Membrane Physiology  
  Division of Neural Systematics
  Division of Neural Development and Regeneration
 Department of Homeostatic Regulation
  Division of Cell Structure
  Division of Cell Signaling 
  Division of Cardiocirculatory Signaling
  Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism
 Department of Fundamental Neuroscience
  Division of Neural Signaling 
  Division of Cerebral Circuitry 
  Division of Homeostatic Development
  Division of Visual information processing
 Department of System Neuroscience
  Division of Sensory and Cognitive Information
  Division of Behavioral Development
  Division of System Neurophysiology
  Division of Integrative Physiology 
  Division of Cerebral Integration
 Center for Research Collaboration
  Section of Collaboration Promotion
  Section of Advanced Research Support
  Section of Visiting Collaboration Research Project
   Section of International Collaborative Research
Project
Regarding Supportive Center for Brain Research, Section
of Viral Vector Development and Section of Primate Model
Development have reorganized to Center for Genetic
Analysis of Behavior and Center for Research
Collaboration, respectively. Section of Primate Model
Development has been renamed to NBR Project.
Section of Evaluation and Collaboration in Center for
Communication Networks has also been renamed to
Section of Research Archives.
Asterisk (*) denotes adjunct divisions

 

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