The Japanese Cancer Association and Debiopharm Group Announce Winners of the 2015 JCA-Mauvernay Award

The ‘JCA-Mauvernay Award 2015’ is awarded to Doctors Yutaka Kondo and Junko Takita

Lausanne, Switzerland – October 9, 2015 – Debiopharm Group™, a Swiss-based global biopharmaceutical company, will be presenting the ‘JCA-Mauvernay Award’ on October 10 to Doctors Yutaka Kondo from the Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences for his basic research on Targeting Epigenetics as a New Paradigm in Cancer Treatment and Junko Takita from Graduate School of Medicine, the University of Tokyo for her applied research on Identification of Molecular Therapeutic Targets for Pediatric Cancers.

Doctors Kondo and Takita will receive their Awards during the General Assembly of the 74th Annual Meeting of the Japanese Cancer Association (JCA) in Nagoya City on the following theme: ‘From collaboration to integration: Cancer research for patients’ benefit’. Dr. Kohei Miyazano, President of the JCA and Thierry Mauvernay, Delegate of the Board of Debiopharm Group, will present the trophies to both scientists.

“We are honored and proud to reward such talented scientists chosen for the high standard and potential applications of their research. We wish them both success with their work and hope they will lead to effective treatments in the years to come”, said Thierry Mauvernay, Delegate of the Board of Debiopharm Group.

Dr. Kondo explores the role of epigenetic dysregulation in cancer. Differences in tumor behavior can be explained by variations in gene expression patterns, which can be generated by epigenetic mechanisms. His research focuses on the functional impact of aberrant epigenetic mechanisms on tumorigenesis, and their potential clinical application in areas such as cancer detection, classification and therapeutic targets validation.

One of the significant causes of death among children is pediatric cancers. Dr. Takita and her group have conducted extensive studies on the molecular mechanisms of intractable pediatric cancers, including neuroblastoma, rhabdomyosarcoma, pleuropulmonary blastoma and hematological malignancies. Their recent studies have shown the differences in the molecular mechanisms underlying pediatric and adult leukemias.

About the JCA-Mauvernay Award
Since 2005, the Japanese Cancer Association (JCA) and Debiopharm Group have co-organized the ‘JCA-Mauvernay Award’. This prize illustrates the curiosity that drives researchers as well as the scientific cooperation between Japan and Switzerland. It aims at recognizing outstanding achievements in the field of oncology amongst Japanese researchers, in both the fundamental and the clinical aspects. The award has a total value of CHF 25’000.

About Debiopharm International SA
Debiopharm Group™ is a Swiss-based global biopharmaceutical group of four companies active in drug development, GMP manufacturing of proprietary drugs, diagnostics, and investment management. Debiopharm International SA is focused on the development of prescription drugs that target unmet medical needs. The company in-licenses, develops promising drug candidates. The products are commercialized by pharmaceutical out-licensing partners to give access to the largest number of patients worldwide.

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