The Power List 2021 – Advanced Medicine
Director and Professor at the Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA); and Representative Director of the CiRA Foundation
Yamanaka is a world-renowned stem cell expert. He won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2012 alongside John Gurdon for the discovery that mature cells can be converted to stem cells, but he has also won numerous other awards and prizes. Discovering the medical applications of induced pluripotent stem cells has been a major focus for Yamanaka since he first reprogrammed human cells in 2007. More recently, the CiRA Foundation has been involved in COVID-19 research by creating induced pluripotent stem cells from the blood of recovered COVID-19 patients and making them available to research institutions worldwide for free.