New Director at LEO Foundation Skin Immunology Research Center
Professor Liv Eidsmo from Karolinska Institutet takes over as new Executive Director at the LEO Foundation Skin Immunology Research Center September 1, 2021. She brings extensive experience as a researcher, clinician and leader to SIC and has the ambition to strengthen the collaboration between the basic and clinical research, attract new talent and support the existing work of tackling the big challenges in skin immunology.
"It's a privilege to be leading an evolving research environment."
What do you wish to achieve as a scientist at SUND?
As a scientist, I plan to build an international and relevant hub for skin immunology, starting with a thriving group of dedicated immunologists focused on T cell-driven skin diseases. Ultimately, we want to be able to fine-tune the functions of local T cells to reset the healthy skin environment at sites of chronic relapsing diseases such as vitiligo or psoriasis.
You have been part time at SIC since January – what makes Copenhagen and SUND exiting for you as a researcher?
SIC is an amazing initiative to tackle the current unknowns in the pathogenesis of inflammatory skin diseases as it enables us to bring together a critical mass of scientists with complementary expertise. Additionally, SUND is a progressive and open-minded research environment with great possibilities for collaborative projects.
You have mentioned, that one of your ambitions is to strengthen the collaboration between the basic and clinical research in skin immunology. How will you realize this ambition?
The challenge is to translate clinical observations to solid proofs of disease mechanisms and several initiatives are already in place to facilitate this process. "The Young Investigator Network" at SIC forms a bridge between clinical and basic research fellows and joint projects are already in place. Also, a large-scale biobank that will follow cohorts of patients with diseases such as psoriasis, atopic dermatitis and vitiligo has been launched in close collaboration between Gentofte Hospital and SIC. As a practicing dermatologist I have been warmly welcomed by the academic dermatologists in Copenhagen and this will open up for new collaborative initiatives in my own group. Finally, I want to launch a program for visiting clinicians in SIC, where collaborations between clinicians from all over the world and basic scientists in SIC can evolve over time.
Another of your priorities as Director is to recruit new talent that complement the existing expertise. What should they be able to add to SIC?
Basically, new recruitments will expand SIC with new perspectives and techniques and this will speed up new research findings. We are currently performing a wide international search for skin immunologists that can complement our current faculty in different aspects of the center’s core research areas.
What are you looking mostly forward to in your new role as Director?
It will be a privilege to lead an evolving research environment that focuses on the topics close to my heart, namely clinically relevant basic science, skin immunology, interactions across academia and the clinical reality. I look forward to facilitate and support the expansion of an integrated, including and exciting scientific platform for skin immunology, with tight interactions to modern academic dermatology.