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KEYNOTE PRESENTATION – “Stressed out skin, environmental exposure and interventions”

Mark Birch-Machin, PhD, is Professor of Molecular Dermatology at Newcastle University (UK), Institute of Cellular Medicine, Associate Dean of Business Development for the Faculty of Medical Sciences and Faculty Ambassador for the National Innovation Centre for Ageing.

He previously worked at Universities in Oregon, Paris and Toronto. He is a member of the Editorial Board of several international dermatology journals, and national/international advisory boards (including cosmetic companies) and grant committees for skin research and UK cosmetic regulation.

His research group focuses on the response of human skin to the environment, particularly within the context of skin ageing and has been funded over the last 30 years by UK research councils, charities, UK government as well as global companies. He has played a pivotal role in pioneering the use of mitochondrial DNA as a biomarker of sun damage in skin. He has an interest in understanding the role of mitochondria in UV and environmental-induced oxidative stress, skin cancer and the relationship between oxidative stress, nutritional status, pigmentation and skin aging as well as the science and use of sunscreens. He has published extensively including 3 different Nature journals.

He has co-founded two spin out companies (Canadian and UK) and is also a co-inventor on multiple patents including the invention of a dermatology product that sold in over a 1,000 stores in Canada. He has a long established track record of working with international media for more than 20 years.


KEYNOTE PRESENTATION:  – ‘Tiny Footprints Left on Corneocytes by Genetics and Lifestyle’

Dr. Christoph Riethmüller was trained chemistry at universities of Münster, Konstanz and Berlin with a diploma thesis in physics. After studying Archebacterial metabolism at the Max-Planck-Institute for Biochemistry (Munich) he focused on nitric oxide (NO) as a biological signal. He received a PhD in Pharmacology for the direct measurement of NO out of purified enzyme and living cells from the University of Graz, Austria (Prof. Bernd Mayer). In 2002, as a lecturer of medical physiology at Münster University, he started using atomic force microscopy (AFM). The research focused on correlations between nanoscopic morphology and cellular barrier function. Since biologically relevant forces leave tiny traces at the cell surface, a systematic quantitation was developed, called nAnostic™ (nanoscale topography for diagnostics). In 2009, Dr. Riethmüller founded the Serend-ip GmbH, which offers nAnostic-assays for biomedical applications, mainly for tumor research and dermatology.



KEYNOTE PRESENTATION – “A Total Worker Health Approach to Skin Exposure Assessment: Evidence from the Firefighter Cancer Initiative”

Dr. Alberto Caban-Martinez is a board-certified osteopathic physician, occupational epidemiologist and Assistant Professor of Public Health Sciences at the University of Miami, Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine, Miami, Florida USA and Deputy Director of the Miami Occupational Research Group, a NIOSH Total Worker Health affiliate program. He also serves as Deputy Director of the Firefighter Cancer Initiative, a transdisciplinary research initiative housed in the UM Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center focused on cancer burden and risk factors in the first responder workforce.

He is also a Fellow of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Gulf Research Program focused on first responder health and safety.  Following graduation from medical and graduate school, he completed a postdoctoral fellowship in orthopedics, arthritis and occupational medicine at the Harvard School of Public Health and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in 2014. His program of research includes investigations of occupational health and safety and workplace health promotion among individuals employed in the construction, public safety, healthcare and fishing industry. He has articles published in the American Journal of Public Health, Preventive Medicine, the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine and JAMA Dermatology. He has published over 116 peer reviewed publications and presented over 128 scientific presentations on a wide range of occupational health and safety topics. He serves as Principal Investigator of the FEMA-funded national Fire Fighter Cancer Cohort Study Expansion, including fire investigators, fire trainers, volunteers and wildland-urban interface firefighters.

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION – “Skin microbiome signatures in healthy skin across daily life : perspectives for cosmetics”

My initial expertise is chemistry and biochemistry thanks to a PhD thesis in medical imaging (CEA Saclay, 2002-2006). Then I learned medical mycology during 5 years post-doc at Institut Pasteur (Paris) where I studied the biochemistry of a Aspergillus fumigatus, a pathogenic mold responsible for nosocomial infections (2006-2011).

During six years (2011-2017), at L’Oreal, my main area of expertise was skin and scalp microbiome profiling (bacteria fungi and viruses) in any type of skin and skin area in order to identify key determinant associated to skin and scalp disorders. This work was possible thanks to my position at Open Research Europe, where I had the chance to establish partnerships with the top academic researchers of the field.

Since 2018, I am in charge of laboratory activities dedicated to the skin microbiome interaction to better understand how commensal microbiota can impact positively the skin barrier function and the skin quality.

Based on my expertise, I am also contributing to support the development of new microbiome based concepts for L’oreal brands, such as Vichy Dercos and La Roche Posay.