Editor’s Note: A media availability with the University of Tokyo delegation, Washington State University President V. Lane Rawlins and other WSU officials is set for 2 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1, in the Smith Center for Undergraduate Education, Room 512. At that time, officials from the two universities will sign an academic exchange agreement. A telephone bridge will be established so media can call in to participate. To use the bridge, call (509) 335-6338, enter code 3033# when instructed to.

PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University and the University of Tokyo are entering into an academic partnership that will enhance the international prestige of both universities’ programs in the areas of agricultural and life sciences and veterinary medicine.

The historic agreement will include exchange of faculty members and postdoctoral researchers, execution of joint research, joint lectures and symposia, and exchange of academic information and publications. The University of Tokyo is considered Asia’s premier research university and ranks among the best in the world. WSU is the only university in the US with which the University of Tokyo is partnering in these disciplines.

The partnership goes to the heart of the WSU’s goals, WSU President V. Lane Rawlins said. “It brings world-class faculty to WSU and allows our world-class faculty to exchange ideas with colleagues and cultivate professional ties that transcend national boundaries.”

University of Tokyo representatives will be on the Pullman campus Tuesday through Saturday meeting with College of Agriculture and Home Economics and College of Veterinary Medicine faculty and administrators. On Friday (Nov. 1), a formal partnership agreement will be signed, which provides for academic collaboration across the disciplines of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Veterinary Medicine.

Potential areas of collaboration under this agreement are several fields in which both institutions have considerable reputations and expertise, including biotechnology, food safety; biological control of insects, diseases and weeds; plant breeding and plant genomics; plant biochemistry and plant molecular science; environmental soil science; animal genomics and reproduction; investigation of prion induced diseases such as chronic wasting disease; anesthesia and analgesia in small companion animals; diagnosis and treatment of neurologic diseases in small companion animals; tumor pathology and development of innovative methods for treatment of neoplastic and immunologic diseases in dogs and cats; and the role of the autonomic nervous system as a regulatory mechanism on cardiovascular function.

The agreement will bring internationally renowned scholars from both universities together to undertake groundbreaking research and provide a number of forums and collaborative academic publications. The first visiting scholar will arrive next week in Pullman.

“The partnership stands to benefit not only the universities involved, but will help strengthen economic ties between Japan and the state of Washington,” Rawlins said. “It will lead to research that has great potential for generating economic activity for years to come.”

The University of Tokyo delegation will meet with WSU regents and supporters in Seattle Tuesday (Oct. 29). The group travels to Pullman later on Tuesday and begins its meetings and tours with university administrators and faculty on Wednesday. On Saturday delegation members will be guests of President Rawlins at the Washington State – Arizona football game and will be introduced on the field at half time.

WSU alumnus Koichiro Iwasaki, president of MRL Co., Ltd., who received his Masters of Arts degree in Economics from WSU in 1983, played a key role in facilitating the high-level academic partnership agreement.

The University of Tokyo delegation includes:

Dr. Yoshihiro Hayashi (YO-SHEE-HE-ROW HA-YAH-SHEE), Dean of the Faculty of Agricultural and Life Sciences and Professor of Veterinary Anatomy;

Dr. Hirokazu Tsubone (HEE-ROW-KAH-ZOO SU-BON-EH), Professor of Comparative Pathophysiology and Head of Veterinary Medical Sciences;

Dr. Nobuo Sasaki (NO-BOO-OH SAH-SA-KEE), Professor of Veterinary Surgery;

Dr. Senkichi Sakai (SEN-KEE-CHEE SAH-KIGH), Professor of Animal Breeding;

Dr. Takashi Yamakawa (TAH-KAH-SHEE YAM-AH-KAH-WAH), Associate Professor, Plant Biotechnology.

(Editor’s Note: For more information about the members of the University of Toyko delegation, contact Molly Parrish, parrishm@wsu.edu, or Sue Hinz, hinz@wsu.edu.)