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The Department of Dermatology deals with all aspects of the biology and diseases of the skin.

Department of Dermatology

Mayumi Fujita, M.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Mayumi Fujita
Mayumi Fujita, M.D., Ph.D.
Department of Dermatology
Phone: (303) 724-4045 (office), 303-724-4037 or 303-724-4046 (lab)
Fax: (303) 724-4048



Institution and location
Field of study
Kyoto University Faculty of Medicine, Japan
Kyoto University Faculty of Medicine, Japan
Kyoto University Faculty of Medicine, Japan
Kyoto University Faculty of Medicine, Japan
University of Colorado, Denver, CO
Tumor biology
University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Skin biology
University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Internal Medicine
University of Washington, Seattle, WA
1986 - 1990   Instructor in Dermatology, Kyoto University FOM, Kyoto, Japan
1990 - 1992   Medical Staff in Dermatology, Tenri Hospital, Nara, Japan
1992 - 1996   Assistant Professor of Dermatology, Kyoto University FOM, Kyoto, Japan
2002 - 2008   Assistant Professor of Dermatology, University of Colorado HSC, Aurora, CO
2008 - 2015   Associate Professor of Dermatology, University of Colorado Denver, Aurora, CO
2015 - present  Professor of Dermatology, University of Colorado Denver, Aurora, CO
2002 - present  Director of Psoriasis Clinic, University of Colorado Hospital, Aurora, CO
2010 - present  Dermatology physician, Department of Veterans Affairs Hospital, Denver, CO
Sasagawa Research Award (1992-3, 1993-4), Dermatology Foundation Fellowship (1993-4, 1994-5), Women’s Dermatologic Society Mentorship award (2001), NIH Fellowship (5 T32 AR07019-25) (2001-2), AAD (American Association of Dermatology) Travel Award to European Dermatology Society Meeting (2001), NIH Award for NIH Dermatology Branch Resident Visit Day (2001), World Congress Education Fund Task Force Scholarship Award for International Investigative Dermatology 2003 (2003)
WO/2008/069881 (International Application No. PCT/US2007/023386)
US2010/0248225 A1 (U.S. Patent Application No. 12/312,390)
WO/2009/085695 (International Application No. PCT/US2008/086830)
US20090169497 (U.S. Patent Application No. 12/335,110)
WO2012/024302 A2 (U.S. Patent Application No.13/817,215)
Psoriasis, auto-immune disease, melanoma
Melanoma biology, melanoma immunology, skin immunology, disease biomarker
The main focus of our current research is: (1) to understand subpopulations of cancer cells, such as cancer stem cells from human melanoma, (2) to study biological roles of inflammatory or anti-inflammatory molecules (particularly IL-1, IL-37 and AAT, inflammasome components) in the progression of human malignant melanoma, (3) to understand biological roles of a new cytokine, IL-37, (4) to identify melanoma-related and host response-related biomarker profiling from blood of melanoma patients, and (5) to identify metastasis-related genetic/genomic changes in human melanoma.  The experiments utilize in vitro methodologies (cellular and molecular biology, immunology, pathology) and in vivo animal study (xenotransplantation, direct in vivo xenograft and genetically-engineered mouse models).
SELECTED PUBLICATIONS, listing only 2011-2015 publications (among 74 peer-reviewed papers)
1.        Singh SP, Tokuda EY, Rodgers RE, Schwartz MP, Luo Y, Fujita M, Ahn NG, Anseth KS: A synthetic modular approach for modeling the role of the 3D microenvironment in tumor progression.  In revision for Scientific Reports.
2.        Chen HM, Fujita M: IL-37: A new player in immune tolerance.  Cytokine 72; 113-114, 2015.
3.        Nguyen N, Couts K, Luo Y, Fujita M: Understanding melanoma stem cells.  Melanoma Management 2: 179-188, 2015.
4.        Li S, Neff CP, Barber K, Hong J, Luo Y, Azam T, Palmer BE, Fujita M, Garlanda C, Mantovani A, Kim SH, Dinarello CA: Extracellular forms of IL-37 inhibit innate inflammation in vitro and in vivo but require the IL-1 family decoy receptor IL-1R8.  Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 112: 2497-2502, 2015
5.      Mukheijee N, Schwan JV, Fujita M, Norris DA, Shellman YG: Alternative treatments for melanoma: Targeting BCL-2 family members to de-bulk and kill cancer stem cells.  J Invest Dermatol 135:2155-2161, 2015.
6.        Mukheijee N, Reuland SN, Lu Y, Luo Y, Lambert K, Fujita M, WA Robinson, SE Robinson, Norris DA, Shellman YG: Combining a bcl-2 inhibitor with the retinoid derivative fenretinide targets melanoma cells including melanoma initiating cells.  J Invest Dermatol 135: 842-850, 2015.
7.        Højen JF, Rasmussen TA, Andersen KLD, Winckelmann AA, Laursen RR, Gunst JD, Møller HJ, Fujita M, Østergaard L, Søgaard OS, Dinarello CA, Tolstrup M: Interleukin-37 expression is increased in chronic HIV-1-infected individuals and is associated with inflammation and the size of the total viral reservoir.  Mol Med 21: 337-345, 2015.
8.       Snedecor ER, Sung C, Moncayo A, Rothstein B, Mockler DC, Tonnesen MG, Jones EC, Fujita M, Clark RA, Shroyer KR, Chen J: Loss of primary cilia is likely independent of proliferation and cell cycle progression.  J Invest Dermatol 135: 1456-1458, 2015
9.        Luo Y, Cai X, Liu S, Wang S, Nold-Petry CA, Nold MF, Bufler P, Norris DA, Dinarello CA, Fujita M: Suppression of antigen specific adaptive immunity by IL-37 via induction of tolerogenic dendritic cells.  Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 111(42);15178-83, 2014.
(Cited in Research Highlights of Nature Immunol by a senior editor, Zoltan Fehervari: IL-37 as an adaptive dampener. Nature Immunol 15(12): 1103, 2014.  Journal:
10.    Luo Y, Nguyen N, Fujita M: Isolation of human melanoma stem cells using ALDH as a marker.  Curr Protoc Stem Cell Biol  26:3.8.1-3.8.10, 2013.
11.   Nguyen N, Luo Y, Fujita M: Aldehyde dehydrogenase isozymes: markers of cancer stem cells in human melanoma.  Expert Rev Dermatol 8(2):111-3, 2013.
(Cited in Commentary of Expert Rev Dermatol by an editor, Jane M Grant-Kels: The diagnosis of melanoma. Expert Rev Dermatol 8 (2); 95-97, 2013. Journal:
12.   Edwards CKIII, Green J, Volk HD, Schiff M, Kotzin BL, Mitsuuya H, Kawaguchi T, Sakata K, Cheronis J, Trollinger D, Bankaitis-Davis D, Dinarello CA, Norris DA, Bevilacqua MP, Fujita M (corresponding author), Burmeister GR: Combined anti-tumor necrosis factor-a therapy and DMARD therapy in rheumatoid arthritis patients reduces inflammatory gene expression in whole blood compared to DMARD therapy alone. Front Immunol 3:366, 2012.
13.   Vasiliou V, Thompson DC, Smith C, Fujita M, Chen Y: Aldehyde dehydrogenases: from eye crystallins to metabolic disease and cancer stem cells. Aldehyde dehydrogenases: From eye crystallins to metabolic disease and cancer stem cells. Chem Biol Interact 202(1-3): 2-10, 2013.
14.   Liu W, Luo Y, Dunn JH, Dinarello CA, Norris DA, Fujita M: Dual role of apoptosis-associated speck-like protein containing a CARD (ASC) in tumorigenesis of human melanoma. J Invest Dermatol 133(2): 518-27, 2013. PubMed:
15.    Luo Y, Dallaglio K, Chen Y, Robinson WA, Robinson S, McCarter MD, Wang J, Gonzalez R, Thompson DC, Norris DA, Roop DR, Vasiliou V, Fujita M: ALDH1A isozymes are markers of human melanoma stem cells and potential therapeutic targets. Stem Cells 30(10): 2100-13, 2012.
16.    Luo Y, Ellis LZ, Dallaglio K, Takeda M, Robinson WA, Robinson S, Liu W, Lewis KD, McCarter MD, Gonzalez R, Norris DA, Roop DR, Spritz RA, Ahn NG, Fujita M: Side population cells from human melanoma tumors reveal diverse mechanisms of chemoresistance. J Invest Dermatol 132(10); 2440-50, 2012. PubMed:
(Cited in Commentary of J Invest Dermatol by Fukunaga-Kalabis M and Herlyn M, a section editor: Beyond ABC, another mechanism of drug resistance in melanoma side population. J Invest Dermatol 132(10); 2317-9, 2012.
17.    Domenico J, Lucas JJ, Fujita M and Gelfand EW: Susceptibility to Vaccinia Virus Infection and Spread in Mice Is Determined by Age at Infection, Allergen Sensitization and Mast Cell Status. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 158:196-205, 2012. PubMed:
18.   Jensen JD, Dunn JH, Luo Y, Liu W, Fujita M, Dellavalle RP: Ellagic acid inhibits melanoma growth in vitro. Dermatology Reports 3: e36, 2011
19.    Reuland SN, Goldstein NB, Partyka KA, Smith S, Luo Y, Fujita M, Gonzalez R, Lewis K, Norris DA, Shellman YG: ABT-737 synergizes with Bortezomib to kill melanoma cells. Biol Open 1:92-100, 2012.
20.    Dunn JH, Ellis LZ, Fujita M: Inflammasomes as molecular mediators of inflammation and cancer: Potential role in melanoma. Cancer Lett 314: 24-33, 2012.  
21.    Ellis LZ, Liu W, Luo Y, Okamoto M, Qu D, Dunn JH, Fujita M: Green tea polyphenol epigallocatechin-3-gallate suppresses melanoma growth by inhibiting inflammasome and IL-1b secretion. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 414: 551-6, 2011.
22.    Luo Y, Robinson S, Fujita J, Siconolfi L, Magidson J, Edwards CK, Wassmann K, Storm K, Norris DA, Bankaitis-Davis D, Robinson WA, Fujita M: Transcriptome profiling of whole blood cells identifies PLEK2 and C1QB in human melanoma. PLoS ONE 6: e20971, 2011. 
23.    Prado R, Jensen JD, Okamoto M, Luo Y, Lewis KD, Fujita M: Metastatic melanoma manifesting with purulent nodules composed of neutrophils and melanoma cells. Eur J Dermatol 21 (4): 642-3, 2011. 
24.   Reuland SN, Goldstein NB, Partyka KA, Cooper DA, Fujita M, Norris DA, Shellman YG: The combination of BH3-mimetic ABT-737 with the alkylating agent temozolomide induces strong synergistic killing of melanoma cells independent of p53. PLoS ONE 6: e24294, 2011. PubMed PMID: 21897876;  PubMed:
25.   Tanaka A, Jensen JD, Prado R, Riemann H, Shellman YG, Norris DA, Chin L, Yee C, Fujita M:  Whole recombinant yeast vaccine induces anti-tumor immunity and improves survival in a genetically engineered mouse model of melanoma. Gene Ther 18: 827-34, 2011. 
26.   Anwar A, Norris DA, Fujita M: Ubiquitin proteasomal pathway mediated degradation of p53 in melanoma. Arch Biochem Biophys 508:198-203, 2011.  PubMed:
27.    Jensen JD, Fujita M, Dellavalle RP. Validation of Psoriasis Clinical Severity and Outcome Measures: Searching for a Gold Standard. Arch Dermatol 147:95-98, 2011. 
28.    Prado R, Brice SL, Fukuda S, Hashimoto T, Fujita M: Paraneoplastic pemphigus herpetiformis with IgG antibodies to desmoglein 3 and without mucosal lesions. Arch Dermatol 147:67-71, 2011.
OTHER PUBLICATIONS (non peer-reviewed)
6    review articles (peer-reviewed/non peer-reviewed)
9    proceedings (non peer-reviewed)
88 meeting abstracts published in journals
76 clinical/research papers in Japanese medical journals (in Japanese)
31  medical essays in Japanese Journal of Clinical Dermatology (in Japanese)


27   invited speech at scientific meetings
131  presentation at scientific meetings
>50  presentation at scientific meetings (in Japanese)