Thomas Dawson, PhD

Senior Principal Investigator, Skin Research Institute, Singapore

Affiliate Professor, Department of Drug Discovery, School of Pharmacy, MUSC, USA

Director, Asian Skin Microbiome Program

Vice Chair, International Union of Microbiological Sciences, MEM

 

Prof Dawson earned his Bachelor's in Chemistry from WVU, his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from UNC, and was a Clinical Pediatrics Medical Genetics Fellow at the Duke University Medical Center. While at UNC Tom identified and patented a novel proto-oncogene, merTK, now a target for drug development in childhood leukemia. At Duke, Tom worked with Dr. Y-T Chen on metabolic disease and was a team member on Myozyme, a treatment for Pompe Disease (the subject of the movie "Extraordinary Measures"). From 1998-2015 Tom worked in P&G Beauty, understanding and intervening in skin, hair, and scalp disorders including aging, dandruff, and hair loss. He was honored with the John Smale Award as P&G's Top Technologist 2002. In 2013 he relocated from Cincinnati to Singapore and led development of the Singapore Innovation Center life sciences segment.

In 2015 Tom joined A*STAR to lead the hair and skin health programs. He leads the A*STAR cutaneous microbiome program, which was recently awarded significant funding (the "Asian Skin Microbiome Program" or ASMP). The ASMP will define the healthy skin microbiome and its role in skin homeostasis. Tom remains committed to leveraging microbiology to improve skin health and retains his emphasis on Malassezia, including leading the global consortium on Malassezia phylogeny, physiology, and pathogenesis (the "Malassezia Research Consortium"). He also leads a translational program fusing hair shaft biogenesis, biochemical synthesis, and physical measurement to create better hair treatments.

Tom is Past President of the Singapore Society for Skin Research, Vice Chair of Mycology and Eukaryotic Microbiology, IUMS, Academic Editor of Frontiers and PLoS 1, and Chair of the A*STAR SRIS Human Biomedical Research Act committee. He is also the CEO of a private consulting firm, Beauty Care Strategics, consulting with multiple consumer care companies, both multi-national and local.