Eugene Van Scott was an innovative dermatology researcher and entrepreneur who will be remembered as a superb physician scientist. Dr. Van Scott headed dermatology at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) from 1953-1968. In 1972 he received the Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medial Research Award for demonstrating the usefulness of topical mechlorethamine (nitrogen mustard) in the treatment of patients with T-cell lymphoma.
His work in psoriasis led to the use of methotrexate. He also received the 1975 Stephen Rothman Award from the SID and the 1980 Lila Gruber Cancer Research Award from the AAD. He was named a Master of Dermatology by the AAD in 1998. One of his students, Phillip Frost, MD endowed the Eugene Van Scott Award for Innovative Therapy of the Skin, which is given each year by the AAD.
A lectureship in his name is also given to a physician or cosmetic scientist who has made a major contribution to the field of cosmetic dermatology at each World Congress of the International Academy of Cosmetic Dermatology.
Other accomplishments of Professor Van Scott include the establishment of the skin turnover time and the use of alpha hydroxy acids in ichthyosis patients and cosmetic dermatology.
Van Scott received his undergraduate (1945) and medical degrees (1948) from the University of Chicago. He completed his dermatology training at University of Chicago and the University of Pennsylvania. Van Scott left the NIH in 1968 to become a professor at Temple University, where he retired in 1989. In 1988 he founded the Neo Strata Company with Ruey Yu, PhD. and they enjoyed great commercial success. Together with Dr. Yu, Dr. Van Scott gave a transformative gift to the dermatology department at Temple University to support innovative clinical research.