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The LEO Science & Tech Hub is a R&D innovation unit of LEO Pharma. We explore cutting-edge science and technology opportunities with relevance to dermatology. By partnering with public and private institutions in the world’s leading life science cluster in Boston, we act as a catalyst to transform early-stage innovations and technologies into solutions that will improve the quality of life for people with skin diseases. LEO Science & Tech Hub was officially inaugurated in September 2016.
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Precision Medicine in Dermatology.

Precision medicine aims at identifying the most suitable treatment for each individual patient.

In order to achieve this we will require a much deeper understanding about the different factors that contribute to the course of disease between patients with the same disease such as: Environmental. Genetic. Molecular. Environmental. Genetic. Molecular. Our current research projects aim at developing technologies that should enable us to adress these questions, resulting in solutions that can one day support treatment decisions.

News from the hub

Nov. 2020 09 Five Teams Stand Out in Hacking Dermatology Innovation Challenge Seeking Potential Solutions to Dermatologic Challenges Faced by Patients with Skin of Color

Five teams came away as winners in Hacking Dermatology 2020, a dermatology innovation challenge that unites clinical and scientific experts, patients, engineers and innovators to reimagine the landscape of patient care.  The hackathon took place in a virtual format, Oct. 23-25, 2020, with support from MIT Hacking Medicine. This year’s focus was the dermatologic concerns faced by patients with skin of color.

Applicants were encouraged to advance ideas and concepts with potential to:

  1. Help shorten diagnostic delay and help sharpen diagnostic accuracy;
  2. Identify personalized care and diverse clinical trial representation; and
  3. Empower skin of color education and help create equitable technology advancements.

Five Teams Stand Out in Hacking Dermatology Innovation Challenge Seeking Potential Solutions to Dermatologic Challenges Faced by Patients with Skin of ColorWinning teams/concepts are:

  • Folliculology: Non-profit public health education campaign aimed to empower, train and task-shift screening of hair and scalp disorders by creating allyship with barbers that is patient centered and culturally appropriate to reduce time to diagnosis.
  • Open Source Dermatology: An open-source image repository focused on skin of color and developed with a community of contributing dermatologists to serve as an educational resource for medical students as well as to support machine learning.
  • DermBox: A photo box that could help create standardized high-quality photos of dermatological conditions, especially in diverse skin types.
  • Project: Agora: Collecting images to share with dermatology educators and technology companies who leverage data to improve teaching and build better AI products.
  • Broad Spectrum: Creating cosmetically acceptable and high-SPF sunscreen options for patients with skin of color.

Winning teams will receive $3,000 in seed funding, mentorship under UCSF Rosenman and from the Hacking Dermatology ecosystem; and an invitation to the Hacking Dermatology Acceleration Pitch, an advanced challenge with additional grand prize funding.

Judges determined the winners in evaluating each team’s pitch for impact, innovation, business model and presentation.

To kick off the hackathon, insights were shared by leaders in dermatology with expertise on the unique challenges of treating patients with skin of color including: ​Seemal R. Desai, MD, FAAD on skin of color challenges and directions; ​Amit G. Pandya, MD on re-pigmenting hands in patients with vitiligo; and Susan C. Taylor, MD, FAAD on hacking skin of color education.

The Hacking Dermatology program is comprised of three stages: challenge statement development and identification, the three-day hackathon and an incubation period with additional funding opportunities for winning teams.

In its the third year, Hacking Dermatology is supported by MIT Hacking Medicine. Event sponsors were the UCSF Rosenman Institute and Gore Range Capital. Read more about Hacking Dermatology 2020 in a recent FiercePharma article.

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Oct. 2020 13 Hacking Dermatology Launches its 2020 Innovation Challenge with Focus on Dermatologic Challenges Faced by Patients with Skin of Color

— Partnership Between Advancing Innovation in Dermatology Inc. (AID) and LEO Science & Tech Hub, the Boston-based R&D innovation unit of LEO Pharma, Begins its Third Year —

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.–Applications are now being accepted for Hacking Dermatology 2020, a dermatology innovation challenge that unites clinical and scientific experts, patients, engineers and innovators to reimagine the landscape of patient care. Hacking Dermatology is a partnership between Advancing Innovation in Dermatology Inc. (AID) and the LEO Science & Tech Hub, the Boston-based R&D innovation unit of LEO Pharma.

Winning teams will be awarded a total of $15,000 (USD) in grants – with potential to move on to an advanced challenge with an additional grand prize sum of $25,000 – and entered into an acceleration period to receive mentorship and access to resources to help bring solutions to market. The hackathon will be in a virtual format Oct. 23-25, 2020.

This year’s challenge focus is the unique dermatologic concerns faced by patients with skin of color. Applicants are encouraged to advance ideas and concepts with potential to 1) help shorten diagnostic delay and help sharpen diagnostic accuracy; 2) identify personalized care and diverse clinical trial representation; and 3) empower skin of color education and help create equitable technology advancements.

“Diagnosing and managing skin disease in patients with skin of color represents a challenging and often unmet need in dermatology,” said Seemal R. Desai, MD, FAAD, Immediate Past President of Skin of Color Society; Founder and Medical Director, Innovative Dermatology; and Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Dermatology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

“By providing better insights to innovators and clinicians on specific challenges related to access, diagnostic workup and therapies, I hope we can continue to advance our understanding and service to underrepresented populations. Hacking Dermatology is a phenomenal platform from which we can accelerate finding timely solutions for this important issue,” added Desai.

Participants will attend three days of the hackathon, pitch ideas on Friday’s kickoff event, and join and actively contribute on a team that competes throughout the weekend with winning teams determined on Oct. 25. Mentors will come from a variety of backgrounds and will volunteer to work with multiple teams and provide expertise, guidance and feedback on projects.

“Together with the LEO Science & Tech Hub, we value open science, innovation and collaboration to enable new ideas that can meaningfully benefit patients, healthcare providers and healthcare broadly,” said William Ju, MD, FAAD, President and Founding Trustee of AID. ”Our goal is to facilitate productive interactions and create an ecosystem with a shared interest in helping to substantially improve dermatologic health.”

“Hacking Dermatology fits squarely within our remit as we explore cutting-edge science and technology opportunities as well as act as a catalyst to transform early-stage innovations and technologies into solutions for people affected by skin conditions,” said Michael Sierra, Vice President, LEO Science & Tech Hub. “Innovation is vital in the development of innovative technologies that can help make the diagnosis and individualized treatment of skin disease more accessible to wider populations.”

Hacking Dermatology program is comprised of three stages: 1) challenge statement development and identification, 2) the virtual three-day hackathon and 3) an incubation period with additional funding opportunities for the winning teams.

In its the third year, Hacking Dermatology is supported by MIT Hacking Medicine. The group, founded at MIT, carries out health hackathons, design thinking workshops, and networking gatherings to teach healthcare entrepreneurship and develop digital strategies to scale medicine and solve health problems worldwide.

The Hacking Dermatology Steering Committee is made up of a working group of representatives from the founding organizations; these are Olga Afanasiev, MD, PhD, FAAD, private practice dermatologist and co-founder of HealthAI; Jamie Breslin, PhD, Director of Operations and Partnerships, AID; and Kasper Juul, Director of External Innovation, LEO Science & Tech Hub. This year’s event sponsors are the UCSF Rosenman Institute and Gore Range Capital.

Those interested in participating or mentoring can learn more, apply or express interest at: http://www.hackingdermatology.org/.

About Advancing Innovation in Dermatology

Advancing Innovation in Dermatology Inc. (AID) is a non-profit organization committed to catalyzing the development of new solutions that can significantly improve skin health. Through multiple initiatives, activities, and actions, AID provides support, resources, and a nexus for individuals and organizations who are effecting change in dermatology by creating a next generation of innovative and impactful products.

About LEO Science & Tech Hub

The LEO Science & Tech Hub is an R&D innovation unit of LEO Pharma dedicated to identifying, developing, and funding innovative solutions that improve the lives of people with skin diseases. It was founded in 2016 as a catalyst to transform early-stage innovations into solutions for improving the lives of people with skin diseases. The LEO Science & Tech Hub is based in Cambridge, Mass.

About LEO Pharma

LEO Pharma A/S helps people achieve healthy skin, and LEO Pharma Inc. is the company’s U.S. affiliate. The company is a leader in medical dermatology with a robust R&D pipeline, a wide range of therapies and a pioneering spirit. Founded in 1908 and owned by the LEO Foundation, LEO Pharma has devoted decades of research and development to advance the science of dermatology, setting new standards of care for people with skin conditions. LEO Pharma is headquartered in Denmark with a global team of 6,000 people, serving 92 million patients in 130 countries.

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Contacts

LEO Science & Tech Hub/LEO Pharma
Rhonda Sciarra, 973-637-8019
Associate Director, Global External Communications

Advancing Innovation in Dermatology
Jamie Breslin, PhD., 908-507-5390
Director Operations and Partnerships

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Contact

We want to engage with partners that have unique innovative skills to generate solutions that will improve the quality of life of patients with skin disease.

Tel. +1 201 396 1645
michael.sierra@leo-scitech.com
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Michael Sierra Vice President Email me