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Donald Y M Leung

Dr. Donald Leung is a fellowship-trained pediatric eczema (atopic dermatitis) specialist who cares for children participating in clinical trials.

Special Interests

Research Interests

My research focuses on mechanisms by which bacteria and viruses contribute to skin inflammation of atopic dermatitis and psoriasis. I am interested in why patients with atopic dermatitis are prone to microbial infection. As well, I have an interest in mechanisms resulting steroid resistance and the treatment of peanut allergy.



University of Chicago, PhD, Biochemistry
University of Chicago, MD


1978 - 1979
Boston Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Resident in Pediatrics
1977 - 1978
Boston Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Intern in Pediatrics


1979 - 1981
Boston Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Fellow in Allergy and Immunology
1977 - 1979
Harvard Medical School, Clinical Fellow in Pediatrics

Awards & Recognition

2022: AAAAI Foundation and Donald Y. M. Leung, MD PhD FAAAAI-JACI Lecture:
Investing Together in Our Future
2022: Ranking of Top 1,000 Scientists in the Field of Immunology.
Ranked #69 in the world and #49 in the United States.
2021: Gary S. Rachelefsky, MD FAAAI Lectureship: Investing Together in Our Future at the 2021 AAAAI Virtual Annual Meeting
2021: Named by The Journal of The American Academy of Dermatology as having highest H-index amongst most highly cited authors in Dermatology
2020: Hugh A. Sampson Lectureship in Food Allergy
2020: Web of Sciences Highly Cited Researchers of 2020
2019: Recognized by ALLERGY as a Legend in Allergy-Immunology
2018: The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Distinguished Scientist Award for contributions to Atopic Dermatitis
2018: Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology CSACI Bram Rose Memorial Lectureship Award
2017: Best Doctors in Pediatric Specialty Recognition
2016: Honorary Professor, Xiangya School of Medicine, Central South University; Changsha, China
2016: 12th Strunk Lectureship at The Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO
2016: Establishment of the Donald Leung/JACI Editors AAAAI Foundation Career Development Award
2016: Establishment of the AAAAI Foundation and Donald Y.M. Leung, MD, PhD, FAAAAI-JACI Lectureship Award
2015: The National Jewish Health Kauvar Presidential Award
2015: Honorary Professor, The 2nd Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical University; Guangzhou, China
2014-2015, 2017-2018: Best Doctors in America, Best Doctors, Inc.
2013, 2018: America's Top Doctors, Castle Connolly Medical, Ltd.
2012: Named by US News and World Report as among the top 1% of physicians
2012: AAAAI Distinguished Service Award
2012: Sir QW Lecturer, Hong Kong Allergy Convention
2011: Reviewer, NIH/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, Special Emphasis Panel for ancillary asthma clinical trials
2009: Arthur Rook Oration at 79th British Assn of Dermatology
2008: Reviewer, The Center for Scientific Review National Institutes of Health, Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR), Small Business Technology Transfer Research (STTR)
2008: NIH/FDA Expert Panel on Food Allergy
2008: Outstanding Scientific Achievement in Clinical Research Award, NJH
2007: Soc of Investigative Dermatology, Julius Stone Lectureship
2007: Chair, Medical Advisory Board, Food Allergy Initiative
2007: NIH/NIAID Res Advisory Council
2006-09: SPR E Mead Johnson Award Selection Comm
2006: ISI Most Highly Cited Authors in Immunology (top half percent of citations in previous 20 years)
2005: Robert Cooke Memorial Lectureship at AAAAI
2004-08: Board of Dir, AAAAI 2004: American Skin Assoc Annual Psoriasis Achievement Award
2004: Edelstein Chair in Pediatric Allergy/Immunology, NJH
2004: Pfizer Visiting Professorship, Univ Chicago
2004: Erich Hoffmann Mem Lecturership, Bonn
2004: 17th James N. Gilliam Mem Lectureship, Univ Texas SW Med Ctr, Dallas
2003: Leung Peanut Allergy NEJM Article named one of Top Science Stories by Sci Am
2003: Ghoury Mem Lectureship at Univ Cincinnati Med Ctr
2003: WAO Scientific Achievement Award, Vancouver.
2003: Outstanding Scientific Achievement Award, NJH
2003: Pfizer visiting Professorship, St Christopher’s Hosp Children, Philadelphia.
2002: Listed in International Biographical Ctr, Cambridge Outstanding Scientists of the 21st Century
2002: Stanislaus Jaros Lectureship at ACAAI Annual Mtg
2002: Burton Zweiman Lectureship at 2002 AAAAI Mtg
1998: Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
1998 to 2007: Consulting Editor, The Journal of Clinical Investigation
1997: E. Mead Johnson Award for Outstanding Research in Pediatrics
1995-2004: Recipient of NIH National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute MERIT Award for Studies in Kawasaki Syndrome
1993: Associate Program Director, Clinical Translational Research Ctr, University of Colorado Denver
1993: American Society for Clinical Investigation
1992-97: Member, NIH General Medicine A Study Section
1992-present: Listed in Woodward & White’s The Best Doctors in America
1991-94: Immunology and Microbiology Study Committee, American Heart Association
1991: AFCR Henry Christian Award for Excellence in Research
1983-85: NIH Young Investigator Research Award
1979-81: NIH National Research Service Award
1970-77: NIH Medical Scientist Training Program

Board Certification

American Board of Pediatrics(#28313)
American Board of Allergy-Immunology (#2420)
Colorado State Board of Medical Examiners (License #29944)
Diagnostic Laboratory Immunology (American Board of Allergy and Immunology: Certificate #0127)

Professional Memberships

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, American Association of Immunologists, American Federation of Clinical Research, Collegium International Allergologicum, Society for Pediatric Research, Society for Investigative Dermatology, American Society for Clinical Investigation


Irvine AD, McLean WHI, Leung DYM. Filaggrin mutations: Associations with skin and allergic diseases.  N Engl J Med 2011; 365(14): 1315-27.

Searing DA, Zhang Y, Murphy JR, Hauk PJ, Goleva E, Leung DY. Decreased serum vitamin D levels in children with asthma are associated with increased corticosteroid usage. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2010; 125:995-1000.

Leung DYM, Gao PS, Grigoryev DN, Rafaels NM, Streib JE, Howell M D, Taylor PA, Boguniewicz M, Canniff J, Armstrong B, Zaccaro DJ, Schneider LC, Hata TR, Hanifin JM, Beck LA,Weinberg A, Barnes KC. Human atopic dermatitis complicated by eczema herpeticum is associated with abnormalities in gamma interferon response. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2011; 127:965-73. PMID: 21458658. PMCID: PMC3074534

Leung DY, Sampson HA, Yunginger JW, Burks AW Jr, Schneider LC, Wortel CH, Davis FM, Hyun JD, Shanahan WR Jr, for the TNX-901 Peanut Allergy Study Group. Effect of anti-IgE therapy (TNX-901) in patients with peanut allergy. N Engl J Med 2003;348:986-93.

Ong PY, Ohtake T, Brandt C, Strickland I, Boguniewicz M, Ganz T, Gallo RL, Leung DY. Endogenous antimicrobial peptides and skin infections in atopic dermatitis. N Engl J Med 2002;347:1151-60.

Academic Affiliations

Professor of Pediatrics, University of Colorado Denver

Teaching & Professional Positions

2013 NIAID Immune Tolerance Network, Steering Committee
2012:NIAID National Allergy and Infectious Disease Advisory Council, Ad hoc member
2007:NIAID National Allergy and Infectious Disease Advisory Council, Ad hoc Member
2006: Research Advisory Committee, University of Colorado Denver
1998: Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
1994: Director, NIH Clinical Research Center, National Jewish Health
1991: Professor, Department of Pediatrics, University of Colorado Denver
1990-91: Associate Professor, Dept of Pediatrics, University of Colorado Denver
1989: Head, Division of Pediatric Allergy-Immunology, National Jewish Health
1989: Senior Staff Physician, National Jewish Health
1987-89: Associate Professor, Dept of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School
1987-89: Director of Allergy Program, Children’s Hospital (Boston, MA)
1983-87: Assistant Professor, Dept of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School
1981-83: Instructor, Department of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School

Conflicts of Interest

National Jewish Health physicians and scientists may collaborate with pharmaceutical or other industries to develop medical and scientific breakthroughs or to provide education on trends in quality medical practice and outcomes to physicians and health professionals around the country. National Jewish Health maintains a strict conflict of interest policy to ensure that all potential conflicts are clearly visible and that management plans are put in place in order to further innovation and education while ensuring the protection of our patients and the integrity of our research. National Jewish Health publicly discloses any payment to our physicians or scientists. View this faculty member’s industry relationships and collaborations.