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2023 Research Achievement Awards

  • Jon M. Hanifin, MD

    Jon M. Hanifin, MD
    Oregon Health and Sciences University
    2023 David Martin Carter Mentor Award

    Dr. Hanifin is an international lecturer and recognized expert in the research and treatment of atopic dermatitis and has directed various national and international symposiums on this subject. He is a valued member of the research community, respected for his investigations into the clinical, biological, and genetic aspects of atopic diseases, as well as other allergic and inflammatory conditions.

  • Masayuki Amagai, MD, PhD

    Masayuki Amagai, MD, PhD
    Keio University School of Medicine
    2023 George W. Hambrick Award

    Masayuki Amagai, M.D., Ph.D. is Professor and Chair, Department of Dermatology, Keio University School of Medicine (2005- ), and Vice President for Research, Keio University (2021- ). He served as Dean of Keio University School of Medicine from 2017 to 2021. He is also Team Leader, Laboratory for Skin Homeostasis, RIKEN Center for Integrative Medical Sciences (2013- ). He did a postdoctoral fellowship at Dermatology Branch, NCI, NIH with the guidance of Dr. John R. Stanley (1989-1992). Dr. Amagai has served professional societies in leadership positions, including as President of Japanese Dermatological Association (2018- ), President of Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology (2012-14), and Secretary of International Societies for Investigative Dermatology (2019- ). He has also been serving in several international journals, including as Consulting Editor for the Journal of Clinical Investigation (2007- ) and Section Editor for Journal of Investigative Dermatology (2002-2017). He is an International Member of the National Academy of Medicine USA (2016- ) and a Council Member of Science Council of Japan (2018- ).

    Dr. Amagai's clinical and research interests center on autoimmune and allergic skin diseases, skin barrier, and skin immunology. Specifically, he has been studying on the pathophysiological mechanisms of pemphigus, peripheral tolerance, the skin barrier homeostasis, and the impact of impaired skin barrier on the onset of atopic dermatitis and other allergic disorders.

  • Kenji Kabashima, MD, PhD

    Kenji Kabashima, MD, PhD
    Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine
    2023 Research Achievement Award in Autoimmune and Inflammatory Skin Disorders

    Dr. Kabashima graduated from Kyoto University in 1996 and further honed his medical and dermatology skills through training at the US Naval Hospital in Yokosuka, Kyoto University Hospital, and the University of Washington Medical Center. He initiated his research on bioactive lipid mediators at Kyoto University and received his PhD there. Subsequently, he pursued his studies at UCSF and the University of Occupational and Environmental Health.

    Currently, Dr. Kabashima holds several prominent positions, including Professor and Chair of the Department of Dermatology at Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine, Senior Principal Investigator at A*STAR (Singapore), and Visiting Consultant at the National Skin Centre (Singapore). He also serves as the President of the Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology.

    His research focuses on understanding the underlying mechanisms of inflammatory skin diseases such as atopic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, and psoriasis, as well as exploring 3D visualization of the skin using two-photon microscopy and drug development.

  • Jean Y. Tang, MD, PhD

    Jean Y. Tang, MD, PhD
    Stanford University
    2023 Research Achievement Award in Skin Cancer and Melanoma

    Dr. Jean Y. Tang is a Professor of Dermatology at Stanford University School of Medicine. She received her MD and PhD (Biophysics) from Stanford, completed dermatology residency at Stanford, and post-doctoral fellowship at UCSF in the laboratory of Dr. Ervin Epstein. Dr. Tang’s research focuses on rare, monogenetic skin diseases such as Basal Cell Nevus Syndrome (BCNS) and Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa (RDEB). She has led or co-led the conduct and completion of 10 investigator initiated clinical trials that have been published in leading journals (NEJM, JAMA, J Clinical Oncology, Lancet Oncology). Dr. Tang and her colleagues showed that Hedgehog pathway inhibition could dramatically shrink and prevent BCCs in patients with BCNS/Gorlin Syndrome in randomized clinical trials.

    She also led the investigator-initiated Phase 1/2A trials of autologous gene-therapy skin grafts for Recessive Dystrophic EB (now called EB-101, licensed to Abeona Therapeutics). The Phase 3 randomized, controlled trial of EB-101 was recently completed, and EB-101 improved wound healing and pain compared with control.

  • Bruce E. Strober, MD, PhD, FAAD

    Bruce E. Strober, MD, PhD, FAAD
    Clinical Professor, Yale University
    2023 Research Achievement Award in Psoriasis

    Dr. Strober earned both his medical and his doctorate degrees from Columbia University in New York, New York. He subsequently completed his residency in dermatology in the Department of Dermatology, New York University School of Medicine in New York, New York. He is board certified by the American Board of Dermatology and a Fellow in the American Academy of Dermatology.

    Dr. Strober’s research interests include the study of therapeutics, both old and new, for inflammatory skin disease, specifically interventions that help patients with difficult-to-treat psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, and hidradenitis suppurativa. Additional research interests include elucidation of novel features of inflammatory skin disease not previously uncovered and assisting in the clarification of the pathophysiology of inflammatory skin disease. He has served as principal investigator or sub-investigator for numerous multicenter clinical studies.

    Dr. Strober is Clinical Professor of Dermatology at Yale University School of Medicine. He is currently the Editor in Chief of the Journal of Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis. Dr. Strober has served as a Section Editor for the British Journal of Dermatology, and an ad hoc reviewer for Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, JAMA Dermatology, British Journal of Dermatology, and the New England Journal of Medicine. He has published more than 200 book chapters and articles in peer-reviewed journals such as JAMA Dermatology, the New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, and the Journal of Investigative Dermatology, the Journal of the American Medical Association, among others. Dr. Strober also has frequently presented data to the FDA, including at the advisory committee for secukinumab, a novel IL-17 inhibitor for the treatment of psoriasis. He currently is the Vice President and President-elect on the Board of the International Psoriasis Council and Scientific Co-Director of the CorEvitas Psoriasis Registry.

    His primary clinical focus is the treatment of difficult-to-treat inflammatory diseases of the skin, such as psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, and hidradenitis suppurativa.

    Prior to co-founding Central Connecticut Dermatology, Dr. Strober was Professor and Chair in the Department of Dermatology, University of Connecticut School of Medicine in Farmington, Connecticut.

  • Anand Ganesan, MD, PhD

    Anand Ganesan, MD, PhD
    University of California, Irvine
    2023 Research Achievement Award in Vitiligo and Pigment Cell Disorders

    Anand K. Ganesan MD, PhD is a Professor of Dermatology, Biological Chemistry, and Surgery and the Associate Dean for Physician Scientist Development at the University of California, Irvine. He completed his medical school and graduate training at the Medical College of Wisconsin, and a physician scientist training program fellowship at the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center.

    Dr. Ganesan’s research work has focused on understanding the regulation of pigment production in the skin, how melanocyte homeostasis is maintained in normal skin, and how this homeostasis is disrupted in the context of disease (vitiligo, pigmentary disorders, and melanoma). His work spans from bench to bedside, ranging from clinical trials for vitiligo and bedside research using non-invasive imaging to studies that focus on the molecular determinants of disease in cultured cells and mouse models.

  • Ponciano (Chito) Cruz, MD

    Ponciano (Chito) Cruz, MD
    University of Texas Southwestern
    2023 Research Achievement Award in Public Policy and Medical Education

    Ponciano (Chito) Cruz, Jr., MD is a renowned dermatologic educator and physician-scientist, whose expertise in residency program education, cancer immunology, and contact dermatitis has led to transformative teaching platforms and the discovery and development of novel immune targets for treating metastatic disease.

    A graduate of the University of the Philippines College of Medicine and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Dermatology Residency Program, Dr. Cruz served as Director of the latter Program for 32 years and as Editor-in-Chief of the journal Dermatitis for 22 years. He is the current Chief of Dermatology at the North Texas Veterans Affairs Medical Center and is Distinguished Professor and Vice Chair of Dermatology at Southwestern.

    He and Kiyoshi Ariizumi, PhD discovered DC-HIL (Gpnmb), a T-cell inhibitor that is being exploited as an immune checkpoint blocker for melanoma and other solid cancers. Dr. Cruz is the author of over 200 peer-reviewed publications, and a recipient of numerous teaching awards from global, national, and local institutions and organizations.

    Dr. Cruz is a past President of the Society for Investigative Dermatology and the Photomedicine Society. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Association of Professors of Dermatology and the American Contact Dermatitis Society, and on Committees of the American Council for Graduate Medical Education, National Board of Medical Examiners, National Institutes of Health, and American Academy of Dermatology.

  • Keisuke (Chris) Nagao, MD, PhD

    Keisuke (Chris) Nagao, MD, PhD
    National Institutes of Health
    2023 Research Achievement Award in Discovery

    Dr. Keisuke (Chris) Nagao, M.D., Ph.D. is a Senior Investigator and Head of the Cutaneous Leukocyte Biology Section in the Dermatology Branch, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Dr. Nagao graduated from Keio University School of Medicine (Tokyo, Japan) in 1994, where he received dermatological training. He did postdoctoral fellowship at the Dermatology Branch, National Cancer Institute (NCI) during 2005-2008, after which he returned to Keio University in 2008 as a faculty. He was recruited back to the NIH in 2014. At NIAMS, Dr. Nagao directs a research program that includes basic and translational investigations on skin immunology and immune-mediated diseases. Dr. Nagao is an attending physician on the NIH Clinical Center’s Dermatology Consultation Service.

  • Aimee S. Payne, MD, PhD

    Aimee S. Payne, MD, PhD
    University of Pennsylvania
    2023 Research Achievement Award in Translational Research

    Aimee Payne, MD, PhD is a Professor of Dermatology and Director of the Clinical Autoimmunity Center of Excellence at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research has investigated how autoimmunity occurs to develop better targeted therapies for disease, which has led to novel precision cellular immunotherapies for antigen-specific subtypes of pemphigus and myasthenia gravis that are currently being evaluated in phase 1 clinical trials. Dr. Payne also serves as President-elect of the Society for Investigative Dermatology, chair of the NIAMS Board of Scientific Counselors, Associate Director of the Penn Medical Scientist Training Program, and co-founder of Cabaletta Bio, focused on engineering targeted cellular immunotherapies for B cell-mediated diseases.

Recipients list by year: 2023 | 2022 | 2021 | 2020