The LEO Foundation Award 2020 – Region Asia-Pacific

Grantee: Dr Yumi Matsuoka-Nakamura

Amount: USD 100,000

Grant category: LEO Foundation Awards

Year: 2020

Geography: Japan

Dr Yumi Matsuoka-Nakamura is Associate Professor at Immunology Frontier Research Center, Osaka University, Japan.

She receives the award for her internationally renowned skin research and her exceptional track record in in skin immunology, allergy and microbiology – and a great vision for her future endeavors.

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The LEO Foundation Award 2019 – Region Asia Pacific

Grantee: Dr. Tetsuro Kobayashi

Amount: USD 100,000

Grant category: LEO Foundation Awards

Year: 2019

Geography: Japan

Dr. Tetsuro Kobayashi is a Research Scientist at the Laboratory for Innate Immune Systems, RIKEN, Center for Integrative Medical Sciences (IMS), Yokohama, Japan.

Dr. Tetsuro Kobayashi receives the award for his research in understanding the interaction between microbes and the immune system in skin.

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The LEO Foundation Award 2018 – Gold Award

Grantee: Dr. Hayato Takahashi

Amount: DKK 1,000,000

Grant category: LEO Foundation Awards

Year: 2018

Geography: Japan

The Gold Award went to Dr. Hayato Takahashi from Keio Unversity School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan, to pursue his work on T cell-mediated autoimmune skin diseases.

Have a sneak peek into his research Video about Dr. Hayato Takahashi

The LEO Foundation Award 2016 – Silver Award to young scientist in Japan

Grantee: Dr. Yu Sawada, research fellow, Department of Dermatology, Kyoto University and assistant professor, University of Environmental and Medical Health, Kitakyushu

Amount: DKK 250,000

Grant category: LEO Foundation Awards

Year: 2016

Geography: Japan

The LEO Foundation has offered the LEO Foundation Silver Award 2016 to Yu Sawada for his pioneering dermatological research. The award has been bestowed in collaboration with the Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology (JSID).

The award ceremony took place in Sendai, Japan, at the 41st annual conference of JSID on 11 December 2016.

Dr. Yu Sawada currently holds the position as a research fellow at the Department of Dermatology in Kyoto University and assistant professor at the University of Environmental and Medical Health in Kitakyushu. Dr. Sawada’s research focuses on establishing and implementing a new therapeutic paradigm for the improvement of inflammatory skin diseases through medical treatment in combination with specific lifestyle alterations such as diet, sleep and physical exercise.

The LEO Foundation Award 2016 – Gold Award to young scientist in Japan

Grantee: Dr. Ayumi Yoshizaki, lecturer and independent researcher, Department of Dermatology, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo

Amount: DKK 500,000

Grant category: LEO Foundation Awards

Year: 2016

Geography: Japan

The LEO Foundation has offered the LEO Foundation Gold Award 2016 to Ayumi Yoshizaki for his pioneering dermatological research. The award has been bestowed in collaboration the Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology (JSID).

The award ceremony took place in Sendai, Japan, at the 41st annual conference of JSID on 11 December 2016.

Dr. Ayumi Yoshizaki is a lecturer and an independent researcher in the field of dermatological autoimmune diseases based at Department of Dermatology, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo. Dr. Yoshizaki has his own research group, an impressive list of publications and is well acknowledged by the Japanese dermatological and scientific communities. His future research is focused on autoimmune diseases related to the skin, particularly systemic sclerosis (SSc). His lab uses highly innovative techniques to explore the role of auto-reactive B cells in SSc at the single cell level. He is a rising star that very well could establish himself as a leader in his field globally.

Cytosolic genome DNA fragments as a trigger of keratinocyte proliferation in psoriasis

Grantee: Dr Koichi Suzuki, PhD, Professor, Department of Clinical Laboratory Science, Faculty of Medical Technology, Teikyo University

Amount: DKK 460,000

Grant category: Research grants in open competition

Year: 2016

Geography: Japan

Release of double-stranded (ds)DNA from keratinocytes has been linked to the initiation of psoriasis via induction of an immune response. Furthermore, vitamin D has been reported to interfere with this mechanism. Vitamin D analogues are widely used for treatment of psoriasis and have a well-known effect on keratinocyte proliferation and differentiation.

Dr Koichi Suzuki and his Japanese-Chinese team hypothesise that the release of dsDNA may more directly induce the characteristic hyper-proliferation and abnormal differentiation of keratinocytes seen in psoriasis by a TNFα-mediated inflammatory process in keratinocytes.

The team will investigate this hypothesis and the impact of vitamin D by the use of keratinocyte cultures and psoriasis skin samples from patients treated with a vitamin D analogue.

The project may further enhance our understanding of the complex molecular events underlying psoriasis and how vitamin D treatment may intervene in the pathogenic process, potentially revealing new aspects of the mode of action of vitamin D.