Laudatio: Professor Masaki Kitajima

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Laudation of Prof.Dr. Masaki Kitajima
Professor Masaki Kitajima graduated from Keio University School of Medicine in 1966. After receiving the M.D. degree in 1975, he spent two years at Harvard Medical School in the Massachusetts General Hospital as a fellow. He returned to Japan and was appointed professor at Keio University School of Medicine in 1989 and subsequently became Chairman of its Department of Surgery. He was Dean of the university from 2001 to 2007. He became Professor Emeritus in April 2007 and is currently the President of the International University of Health and Welfare at Mita Hospital in Tokyo.
During his exceptionally rich scientific research work he dealt with such topics as the impairment of the gastrointestinal tract after stress-effects, microcirculatory changes observed during the transplantation process, biochemical factors of metastasis formation, and the gene therapy of malignant tumours. His pioneer studies on the detection of early gastric and colon cancer, the role of sentinel-node mapping of these fields and the successful introduction of robotic surgery have meant a new chapter in the history of surgery. By connecting the lessons of modern pathological studies with minimally invasive surgical procedures, he has achieved excellent results in treating malignancies.
Professor Kitajima’s scientific work has produced two hundred books, 16 hundred published papers, and 25 hundred oral and poster presentations. He is a member or president of 54 national and international scientific societies, an Honorary Member of the Hungarian, Italian, German, Polish, and American Surgical Societies and of the Royal College of Surgeons as well. He is the Founding Co-President of the Japan-Hungary Surgical Society and also the Past President of the International Surgical Society. He is an Editorial Board Member of the New England Journal of Medicine, the World Journal of Surgery and 30 other medical journals. In appreciation of his enthusiastic contribution to the development of the Japanese – Hungarian medical-surgical connection, Professor Kitajuma was awarded the Knight’s Cross Order of Merit of the Hungarian Republic by the Hungarian President in 2007.
His activities at Keio University Medical School founded his surgical school: 20 surgeons from his department have been appointed as professors.
Professor Masaki Kitajima is an excellent surgeon, scholar and scientist and a respected representative of the Japanese-Hungarian scientific connections.

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