ASDS Awards Eight Clinical and Cosmetic Research Grants

Society Announces Recipients of Three Research Programs at the 2019 ASDS Annual Meeting

The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery (ASDS), the largest specialty organization representing dermatologic surgeons, has announced eight grant recipients across three research programs. Supporting its mission to foster, develop and encourage investigative knowledge in dermatologic surgery, ASDS provides its members with the tools and assistance they need to achieve the highest standards in clinical practice and patient care.

“ASDS is committed to supporting research through these programs, which for years have enabled ASDS members to be innovators in the field of dermatologic surgery,” said ASDS President Murad Alam, MD, MBA. “Our Research Work Group carefully reviewed this year’s applicants and is pleased to award these eight recipients as they pursue these important topics facing our specialty.”

New in 2019, the Jumpstart Research Seed Grant Program provides research investigators a chance to define objectives, test hypotheses and provide a better idea of feasibility and directionality of research before applying for additional funds from ASDS or other external sources. Three Jumpstart Research Seed Grants were awarded in 2019: 

  • Spencer Bezalel, MD – Mayo Clinic: “Evaluation of non-invasive non-thermal irreversible electroporation on cutaneous tissue”
  • Jigar Patel, MD – Duke University: “Evaluation of the accuracy of computer-guided laser delivery versus a human-operator for cutaneous applications”
  • Wesley Yu, MD – University of California, San Francisco: “Mechanisms of Immune Tolerance: HPV, the PD-1/PD-L1 Pathway, and Squamous Cell Carcinoma”

The Cutting Edge Research Grant Program was introduced in 1999 with the goal of uniting education and innovation to encourage clinical research and the transfer of new technologies into the surgical practice setting. It also supports Board-directed research including topics surrounding Mohs surgery for skin cancer and patient satisfaction. Four Cutting Edge Research Grants were awarded in 2019; three of which were Board-directed research topics:

  • Monica Boen, MD* – Cosmetic Laser Dermatology: “A randomized clinical trial comparing the efficacy and safety of radiofrequency microneedling versus nonablative fractional 1550nm erbium:glass laser for the rejuvenation of the neck”
  • Maggie Chow, MD – University of California, San Diego: “Genetic markers for metastatic cutaneous squamous cell carcinomas of the head and neck among patients with solid organ transplants
  • Michael Renzi, MD* – Cooper Dermatology: “The Effect of Compression Therapy on Post-Operative Healing and Complication Rate in Dermatologic Surgery”
  • Joseph Sobanko, MD* – Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania: “Cost-analysis and shifting trends of melanoma surgery in different operative settings from 2008 to 2018”

*Indicates Board-directed Research Topic

Established in 2015 and generously supported by the Allergan Foundation, the Fredric S. Brandt, MD, Innovations in Aesthetics Fellowship Fund continues the legacy of its namesake cosmetic dermatologist by promoting and supporting the career development of junior cosmetic dermatologic surgeons focused on cosmetic treatments and patient care. Recipients must be enrolled in an ASDS-accredited Cosmetic Dermatologic Surgery Fellowship Training Program. Hyemin Pomerantz, MD, of the Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York, is the sole recipient in 2019 for her research project, “Comparison of energy-based devices in the treatment of atrophic acne scars utilizing objective measurement with a new 3D imaging system.”

For more information on ASDS grant programs, visit


About American Society for Dermatologic Surgery 
The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery (ASDS) is the largest specialty organization exclusively representing dermatologic surgeons who have unique training and experience to treat the health, function and beauty of skin throughout every stage of life. ASDS members are recognized as leaders in the field of cosmetic and medically necessary skin surgery. They also are pioneers in the field; many are involved in the clinical studies that bring popular treatments to revitalize skin and fill and diminish wrinkles to the forefront. Their work has helped create and enhance many of the devices that remove blemishes, hair and fat, and tighten skin. Dermatologic surgeons also are experts in skin cancer prevention, detection and treatment. As the incidence of skin cancer rises, dermatologic surgeons are committed to taking steps to minimize the life-threatening effects of this disease. For more information, visit

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ASDS is committed to supporting research through these programs, which for years have enabled ASDS members to be innovators in the field of dermatologic surgery. Our Research Work Group is pleased to award these eight recipients as they pursue these important topics facing our specialty.