Richard Gallo

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Richard L. Gallo
OccupationProfessor, Dermatologist

Richard L. Gallo M.D., Ph.D. is Professor and founding Chairman of Dermatology at the University of California, San Diego and Chief of Dermatology at the VA San Diego Healthcare System. His research accomplishments as a physician-scientist include discovery of antimicrobial peptides in mammalian skin and establishing new links between innate immunity and skin diseases such as atopic dermatitis and rosacea.


Gallo studies how humans interact with the environment and protect themselves from infection. He discovered that cathelicidin antimicrobial peptides(Cathelicidins) are present during wound repair.[1] Subsequent work from his laboratory used molecular techniques to produce a knock out mouse that has shown how cathelicidin antimicrobials protect against infection in several organs including the skin.[2] By using a wide variety of biochemical and genetic tools his work has also shown that other antimicrobial peptides and elements of innate immunity such as Toll-like receptors and Hyaluronan influence human health. His work has translated into a new understanding of the cause of rosacea, a finding with immediate therapeutic implications. Most recently his research has defined biochemical mechanisms through which Vitamin D and the normal skin microflora Microbiome can control immune responses. These latest findings have advanced understanding of the Hygiene hypothesis, Atopic Dermatitis and Rosacea. His analysis of the function of the human skin microbiome is leading discovery of new therapeutic approaches to disease by discovering molecules from bacteria on the skin that can be used for drugs.

Several press releases and scientific publications have reported his discoveries.[3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10]


  1. ^ Gallo RL, Ono M, Povsic T, Page C, Eriksson E, Klagsbrun M, Bernfield M (November 1994). "Syndecans, cell surface heparan sulfate proteoglycans, are induced by a proline-rich antimicrobial peptide from wounds". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 91 (23): 11035–9. PMID 7972004.
  2. ^ Nizet V, Ohtake T, Lauth X, Trowbridge J, Rudisill J, Dorschner RA, Pestonjamasp V, Piraino J, Huttner K, Gallo RL (November 2001). "Innate antimicrobial peptide protects the skin from invasive bacterial infection". Nature. 414 (6862): 454–7. doi:10.1038/35106587. PMID 11719807.
  3. ^ "Cause Of Skin Condition Rosacea Discovered". Science Daily. 5 August 2007. Retrieved 29 December 2011.
  4. ^ "Oral Vitamin D May Help Prevent Some Skin Infections". ScienceDaily. October 2008.
  5. ^ "Dirt can be good for children, say scientist". BBC News. November 2009.
  6. ^ Kain D (23 November 2009). "Surface bacteria maintains skin's healthy balance". UC Newsroom. Archived from the original on 15 January 2014.
  7. ^ Ong PY, Ohtake T, Brandt C, Strickland I, Boguniewicz M, Ganz T, Gallo RL, Leung DY (October 2002). "Endogenous antimicrobial peptides and skin infections in atopic dermatitis". The New England Journal of Medicine. 347 (15): 1151–60. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa021481. PMID 12374875.
  8. ^ Lai Y, Di Nardo A, Nakatsuji T, Leichtle A, Yang Y, Cogen AL, Wu ZR, Hooper LV, Schmidt RR, von Aulock S, Radek KA, Huang CM, Ryan AF, Gallo RL (December 2009). "Commensal bacteria regulate Toll-like receptor 3-dependent inflammation after skin injury". Nature Medicine. 15 (12): 1377–82. doi:10.1038/nm.2062. PMID 19966777.
  9. ^ Nakatsuji T, Chen TH, Narala S, Chun KA, Two AM, Yun T, Shafiq F, Kotol PF, Bouslimani A, Melnik AV, Latif H, Kim JN, Lockhart A, Artis K, David G, Taylor P, Streib J, Dorrestein PC, Grier A, Gill SR, Zengler K, Hata TR, Leung DY, Gallo RL (February 2017). "Staphylococcus aureusand are deficient in atopic dermatitis". Science Translational Medicine. 9 (378). doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.aah4680. PMC 5600545. PMID 28228596.
  10. ^ Nakatsuji T, Chen TH, Butcher AM, Trzoss LL, Nam SJ, Shirakawa KT, Zhou W, Oh J, Otto M, Fenical W, Gallo RL (February 2018). "Staphylococcus epidermidisprotects against skin neoplasia". Science Advances. 4 (2): eaao4502. doi:10.1126/sciadv.aao4502. PMC 5834004. PMID 29507878.