2016 Young Researcher (Asia)

The Young Researcher Awards encourage young scientists to develop a career in toxicology without harming animals, by offering bursaries to allow them to advance in this area.

In 2016, for the first time we added two regional awards, including £30,000 of awards shared between three young scientists from Asia.

We present the three winners:

Mijoo Kim, Yonsei University
South Korea

Mijoo Kim is a basic science researcher at the College of Dentistry, Yonsei University. After graduating from dental school she worked as a clinical dentist in a dental hospital but then changed career as a basic scientist because she was interested in studying dental materials.

Mijoo’s mentor, Kwang-mahn Kim, is also a dentist and the person who inspired her to study the biocompatibility of dental materials step by step during her master’s and doctor’s course.

After graduation she moved to Kyung-hee University, working as a research professor in 2015 and investigating the hard tissue regeneration in dentistry. Now, Mijoo is back at Yonsei University to study biocompatibility, and teach dental students.

Her laboratory has a special evaluation center for dental devices and materials, which helps to investigate those materials in advance.


Kumiko Tatsumi, Osaka City University

Kumiko is a student of Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine, in the department of pathology. Her main research theme is the development of the in vitro system for evaluating of hepatotoxicity.

She is also a member of the following organisations:

  • Japanese Center for the Validation of Alternative Methods (JaCVAM) (2014 – present)
  • Japanese Society for Alternatives to Animal Experiments (JSAAE) (2013 – present)
  • Japanese Tissue Culture Association (2011 – present)
  • Japanese Society of Toxicology (2010 – present)
  • Safety Evaluation Forum – Study Group on in vitro methods for liver metabolism and toxicity evaluation (2009 – present)


Yu Chen, The Center for Alternatives Research & Evaluation

Yu Chen received his Bachelor and Master’s degrees in Guangdong Pharmaceutical University, during which he was taught alternative methods at the IQTC by Dr. Cheng Shujun.

His major is hygiene toxicology; fortunately, Yu could join the team at the Chinese Center for Alternatives Research and Evaluation, which is currently one of the outstanding Chinese in vitro labs, and he says that it is his honour to study the alternative technologies.

Recently, Yu worked in the IQTC for the in vitro test, which means that he can keep learning about research on alternatives to animal research.

At this prominent lab in China he could learn the information about alternatives from national and international experts and broaden his mind and awareness through communication with experts. “As long as the development of technology, more high throughout and more high content methods continue, continuing my studies here has become a significant goal”, he adds.


The awards were presented at a special ceremony in Seoul, which also featured a conference and public event: