Penn Dermatology

Penn Dermatology Research and Clinical Trials

researcher with skin sample

Research and Clinical Trials at Penn Dermatology

The department of dermatology at the University of Pennsylvania has a long history of being one of the leaders in clinical and basic research involving the skin and its diseases. In recent years, it has continually ranked among the top five dermatology departments in National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding, and is often ranked at the top. Penn Dermatology is one of only six dermatology research centers in the country designated by the National Institute of Arthritis, Musculoskeletal, and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) at the NIH.

Penn Dermatology established one of the first Clinical Trials Units in the nation that specializes in dermatology. In addition, the Penn Skin Disease Research Center funds core facilities for skin research and pilot grants for investigators doing new research, or for researchers outside the dermatology department who want to apply their research to dermatologic problems.

Penn Dermatology offers a world-renowned program in hair follicle biology and skin regeneration and conducts leading skin cancer research. In addition, the department has taken an early initiative in conducting skin microbiome research, a newer area of study in dermatologic research.

Penn's dermatology research interests fall into several basic areas:

  • Basic biology and pathophysiology of stratified squamous epithelia, including epidermis and hair
  • Pathophysiology and immunology of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma
  • Dermatoepidemiology and clinical studies
  • Clinical care and basic pathophysiology of autoimmune blistering and rheumatologic skin diseases

Penn Dermatology trains many postdoctoral research fellows and is one of the few dermatology departments in the country with dedicated dermatologic research laboratories and dermatopathologic facilities. Its dedicated and talented faculty, committed staff, state-of-the-art facilities and intense focus on, and belief in, its mission, have guided Penn Dermatology to its present position as a major leader in dermatologic research, teaching and practice.