Promising scientists win research awards

13 September, Ballerup, Denmark – The LEO Pharma Research Foundation reveals this year’s award winners: two talented scientists in dermatology research in Switzerland and the UK. 

Each year the LEO Pharma Research Foundation (LPRF) selects two promising scientists from the global scientific community with the aim of supporting significant advances in scientific research worldwide. The winners have been chosen based on their scientific achievements and potential to become leaders in their fields. In 2013 the selection of candidates was made in association with the European Society for Dermatological Research (ESDR).

Gold award

The DKK 1,000,000 gold award goes to Onur Boyman, Professor, Dr. med., Senior Consultant Physician and Head of Laboratory at the Department of Dermatology, University Hospital Zurich.
Professor Boyman’s research focuses on the function of T cell subsets and different cytokines in the pathogenesis of psoriasis and other immune-mediated diseases and the treatment of melanoma. His research has led to new insights into the role of skin-resident T cells and cytokines during the development of a psoriasis lesion. Also, he has developed a technique based on cytokine-antibody complexes that specifically stimulate individual T cell subsets. This method shows great promise both as a potential treatment of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases and as a potential cancer therapy.

Silver award

The DKK 500,000 silver award goes to Muzlifah Haniffa, Wellcome Trust Clinical Intermediate Fellow in Dermatology at the Institute of Cellular Medicine, Newcastle University, UK.
Dr. Haniffa’s research focuses on dendritic cells; a type of white blood cells also present in the skin that are important in regulating immune responses against microorganisms, cancer and tolerance to self proteins. Her research has highlighted specific types of dendritic cells that can be exploited to enhance vaccination strategies against cancer, such as melanoma, and infections.

“This year’s award winners are performing outstanding work within melanoma and psoriasis and related immunology research,” says Poul Rasmussen, LPRF Chairman. “Their research has led to valuable new understanding of the biology of inflammatory cells and their role in skin diseases. Those diseases are serious conditions affecting millions of people. By supporting this research, the LEO Pharma Research Foundation hopes to pave the way for better dermatology care and new solutions to skin diseases for patients worldwide.”

The LPRF supports research in medicine, chemistry, biology and pharmacy. With its own board, it is completely separate from the LEO Foundation and the pharmaceutical company LEO Pharma.

The awards ceremony will be held on 13 November 2013 in Ballerup, Denmark. Journalists are welcome to attend; please use the contact information below to register.

Press contact

Eva Louise Østergaard, on behalf of the LEO Pharma Research Foundation,
+45 4137 1207,

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