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RIKEN BioResource Center (BRC) and its forerunner organizations have long history of activities. BRC originated from the Life Science Promotion Division founded in 1974. They began operating Gene Bank in 1987 which led to the establishment of BRC in 2001.

1917 Rikagaku Kenkyusho Foundation (RIKEN) established.
1948 RIKEN dissolved and renewed under the name Kagaku Kenkyusho Inc. (KAKEN).
1958 RIKEN Act enforced.
KAKEN dissolved and returned to RIKEN.
1974 Life Science Promotion Division established to undertake life science projects
1980 RIKEN “Japan Collection of Microorganisms (JCM)” established at Wako campus.
1984 Tsukuba Life Science Center founded in Yatabe Town. (currently Tsukuba City), Ibaraki.
1987 Gene Bank began operation (collection, preservation and distribution of cell lines, DNA and cDNA clones and databases).
2000 Tsukuba Life Science Center renamed Tsukuba Institute
2000 The Report of RIKEN BioResource Center Preparation Committee (Chair: Dr. Haruo Sugano)
2001 RIKEN BioResource Center founded in Tsukuba Institute. Dr. Kazuo Moriwaki assumed the founding Director. (2001-2005)
2002 National Bio-Resource Project (NBRP) of the MEXT started. RIKEN BRC selected as the core facilities for four resources in the NBRP, mouse, arabidopsis, cells and DNA materials.
2003 RIKEN reorganized to an Independent Administrative Institute (IAI) from a public corporation.
2004 JCM in Discovery Research Institute in the Wako Institute integrated to the BioResource Center as Microbe Division.
2005 Dr. Yuichi Obata succeeded as the second Director. (2005-2019)
2007 The second term of NBRP started. RIKEN BRC selected as the core facility of Microbe, in addition to the four resources.
2007 Back-up facility of bioresources set up at RIKEN Harima Institute.
2008 The 2nd term of IAI started.
2008 A part of Genome science research center incorporated into RIKEN BRC as three teams and 1 unit.
2011 Eastern Japan great earthquake disaster
2011 BioResource Building for Cell Research completed
2011 Lifeline Facilities reinforced (fuel tank for emergency power sources and liquid nitrogen production machines, and well for self-supply water.)
2012 The third term of NBRP started.
2012 Microbe Division physically moved to the Tsukuba institute.
2013 The 3rd term of IAI started.
2013 Tsukuba Institute renamed “Tsukuba Branch”
2015 RIKEN reorganized to a National Research and Development Institute (NRDI) from an Independent Administrative Institution.
2016 RIKEN was chosen to be one of three Designated National Research and Development Institutes.
2017 The fourth term of NBRP started.
2018 RIKEN BioResource Center (RIKEN BRC) renamed “RIKEN BioResource Research Center (RIKEN BRC) “
2019 Dr. Toshihiko Shiroishi succeeded as the third Director. (2019-present)