Over the last decade, people’s behavior during their daily train ride has completely changed. In the past, Japanese were known to be avid readers of paperbacks (bunko) and manga magazines, and would do so even on Tokyo’s notoriously crowded trains. Now, however, it is rare to spot someone on the train who is not staring into their cellphone. A large amount of them are playing social games.
Since the announcement that Mount Fuji, Japan’s most iconic landmark, had finally won World Heritage status on June 23, Fuji fever has swept the nation. As souvenirs commemorating the event hit the shelves, sales of Fuji-themed merchandise were brisk. Stores selling climbing gear to those who have been inspired to make the pilgrimage up Fuji have also been doing well.
A Japanese research team has become the first in the world to develop a functional liver from human induced pluripotent stem cells, according to an article the researchers published in the online version of British journal Nature. The team created liver buds and transplanted these into mice suffering from liver failure.
Matsuzakaya, the oldest department store in Tokyo’s famous Ginza shopping district, closed Sunday for a total makeover and will reopen as a large commercial complex in four years. Under a block-wide redevelopment project, the venerable 88-year-old, seven-story department store will be replaced in fiscal 2017 by a 13-floor high-rise with six basement floors and office space, operator J. Front Retailing Co. said.