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International Society of Hypertension

New Investigators Network

New Investigator Network
Member Spotlight

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December 2013 Spotlight of the Month

Tomoyuki Honjo

Tomoyuki Honjo MD, PhD.
Attending Physician
Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine,
Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Cardiology
Kobe, Japan.

How did you become interested in research relating to Hypertension?

I am a cardiologist in Japan.  I see many patients suffering from hypertension related cardiovascular disease.  I am always interested in the management of hypertension.

Describe your research & the program/lab (info of your supervisor) that you are in?

I just returned to Japan from Los Angeles this summer.  Now I am doing clinical practice and biomarker study for cardiovascular disease.  In Los Angeles, I was in Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute, Atherosclerosis Research Center.  In that lab, we studied about vaccine mediated new immune therapy for atherosclerosis.  My research focused on angiotensin II-induced aortic aneurysm and hypertension. 

What do you consider to be your substantial scientific contribution so far (provide Pubmed PMID if possible)?

My two manuscripts (vaccine for aortic aneurysm and hypertension) are now under review. 

What is your favourite manuscript from a lab other than your own (provide Pubmed PMID if possible)?

“CD8+ T cells mediate the athero-protective effect of immunization with an ApoB-100 peptide.”  (PMID: 22347402)

I used same peptide vaccine for my research.

What facilities are essential for your research?

Flow cytometry, PCR, Cell culture, Immunohistochemistry, Cell imaging, Mass spectrometry

Where do your research strengths lie? Why? What are your research weaknesses? How will you improve?

My research strengths is clinical background as a cardiologist.

Describe your unforgettable (proudest) moment in science, and the most challenging situation that you have had to overcome (lessons learnt) so far?

My unforgettable moment was receiving three awards in 2013.  The proudest one is “ATVB Early Career Investigator Award” in American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2013.

At which conference did you first present? How was your experience?

I don’t remember well, but somewhere in Japan in 2001.  I was really nervous.

What upcoming conferences will you be attending, and what is the furthest distance that you have traveled for a conference?

I will attend “The 78th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Japanese Circulation Society”.

The furthest distance I have travelled was to the ESC congress 2006 in Barcelona.

How did you learn about ISH/NIN and its activities?

I learned about ISH and its activities in “ISH New Investigators' Symposium in New Orleans 2013”.

What area(s) do you wish to specialize in the future?

I am trying to develop a new biomarker for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease from immune angle.  I am also interested in pulmonary hypertension.

Who is your role model in Science? Why?

My current and previous supervisors (Dr. Kenichi Hirata, Dr. Tatsuro Ishida, and Dr. PK Shah).  They are physician-scientists and know not only clinical but also basic science.  They are brilliant individuals and working very hard. 

What are your scientific goals? Advise for talented emerging scientists?

My future goal is to develop a novel immune based biomarker and non-invasive treatment of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. 

The advice I can give is to work hard and enjoy what you are doing.

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