January 11, 2013 -
Dr. Nomura, responsible for developing animal models such as the rasH2, pvr, NOG, and BRG, passed away at the age of 90.
He leaves a distinguished legacy of significant accomplishments in biomedical research and laboratory animal science. The hallmark of his career as a scientist was establishing exquisitely defined experimental animals which contributed to assuring reproducibility of experimental data in biomedical research. His concepts merged with those of Russell and Burch's proposal of "drama type", which refers to the effects of the proximate environment on phenotypic expression. As such, Dr. Nomura's concepts contributed to the quest of reducing the number of experimental animals required to provide meaningful data and in refining animal experiments.
Dr. Nomura was a strong proponent of developing a system for defining laboratory animals microbiologically and genetically, so that defined, disease-free animals could be provided to scientists, thereby improving the quality of biomedical research and advancing animal welfare.
In 1952, Dr. Nomura founded the Central Institute for Experimental Animals (CIEA) for the purpose of developing animal models to address the most salient human and animal diseases and directed its development and growth until his death. He established the Asian Monitoring and Reference Laboratory at the CIEA, which has served as a model for other like laboratories in the world established to support the development of well-defined, high quality laboratory animals for biomedical research.
Dr. Nomura was a seminal advocate for advancing laboratory animal science in Japan, Asia, and throughout the world. He was an active member of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) and was most active as a member of the International Council for Laboratory Animal Science (ICLAS), almost from its inception. Through the years he served as treasurer and vice president of ICLAS and long-time member of the Governing Board, influencing its structure and goals. His wisdom and insight served and helped guide ICLAS in its formative years.
Dr. Nomura was the recipient of numerous awards and honors in recognition of his valuable contributions. His influence helped shape international laboratory animal science and will continue to guide the advancement of research requiring animals. ICLAS honored him with the Muhlbock Award and designated him as an Honorary Member. The government of Japan conferred many high honors, including the Emperor's Award as Person of Cultural Merit.
Dr. Nomura will long be remembered as a valued mentor to many individuals throughout the world, as a teacher and counselor.