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01 FN: Douglas E. Brash

Yale Medicine Magazine, 2014 - Spring

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Douglas E. Brash, Ph.D., professor of therapeutic radiology and dermatology, will be awarded the 2014 Finsen Medal of the International Union of Photobiology (IUP). The medal recognizes lifetime achievement in photobiology, and is presented every five years by the IUP Congress, held this year in Cordoba, Argentina, in September. It commemorates Niels R. Finsen, recipient of the 1903 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his studies on phototherapy of cutaneous tuberculosis. Brash’s laboratory has elucidated many of the steps through which sunlight causes skin cancer, as well as sunlight’s role in triggering protective mechanisms. In the United States, such skin cancers as melanoma and basal and squamous cell carcinomas are as frequent as all other cancers combined. Brash earned degrees in engineering, physics, and biophysics before turning his attention to ultraviolet radiation as a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School. After four years on the staff of the National Cancer Institute, he joined the School of Medicine faculty in 1989.