A Greeting from our President

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Dear members of the Japanese Society for Pediatric Infectious Diseases,

This is Dr. Moriuchi from Nagasaki University. I am honored to announce my appointment as the new president of our society. Please let me introduce myself. I graduated summa cum laude from Nagasaki University School of Medicine in 1984. After finishing my pediatric residency and service, I studied respiratory viruses at the Virus Center of the National Sendai Hospital (now the National Hospital Organization Sendai Medical Center) from 1988 to 1990. Subsequently, I pursued research studies at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) in the United States.

During the first three and a half years, I conducted herpesvirus research under the supervision of Drs. Stephen Straus and Jeffrey Cohen. Subsequently, after passing the ECFMG examination, I undertook infectious disease clinical training at the NIH Clinical Center and several university hospitals in DC and Baltimore. The balanced program at the NIAID allowed me to engage in both clinical and research activities. It was the time when antiretroviral therapy was emerging for AIDS patients. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the NIAID always spent a long time seeing his AIDS patients on his hospital rounds despite his busy schedule. My exposure to AIDS patients and Dr. Fauci’s enthusiasm motivated me to shift my research to HIV from herpesviruses.

After completing my fellowship, I returned to Japan in 1999 and assumed the position of Professor of Pediatrics at my alma mater. I also hold a concurrent position as a professor at the Graduate School of Tropical Medicine & Global Health, which is affiliated with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and a vise-director of the National Research Center for the Control and Prevention of Infectious Diseases at Nagasaki University.

Throughout the years, I have served in various roles within our society, including as the chairman of the Research and Education Committees, and as a board member. I have also fostered connections with Asian countries as a member of the standing committee of the Asian Society for Pediatric Infectious Diseases. In 2018, I had the privilege of serving as the president of the Asian Congress of Pediatric Infectious Diseases.

Beyond our society, I have been involved in the Japan Pediatric Society’s Committee for Vaccination and Infection Control and as a board member for the Japanese Society for Vaccinology and the Japanese Society for Virology. Amidst these responsibilities, I encountered the COVID-19 pandemic, which has demonstrated the profound impact infectious diseases can have on children’s lives and mental health, underscoring our responsibility as academics to advocate for their protection. Through this experience, I newly recognized the distinct nature of a child as a host of pathogens and renewed my determination to secure the independence of the field of pediatric infectious diseases. I believe that our society, with its emphasis on the interplay between infection and immunity in the unique context of children, can make significant contributions.

Facing various challenges, my commitment is to continue and solidify the path laid out by the former president Dr. Ouchi for the sake of our children. I am determined to work diligently with all of you to advance research, cultivate talent, enhance clinical practices, and engage with society under international collaboration. I am confident that, together, we can build upon the foundation set by Dr. Ouchi and make meaningful progress for the benefit of our children.

Thank you for your support and collaboration.