Madam President, it is my privilege and honor to present to you Prof. Seiki Matsuno of Sendai, Japan, for Honorary Fellowship in the American College of Surgeons.
Professor Matsuno was born in Kofu, and most of his premedical and medical school education took place at Tohoku University in Sendai. After completing his surgical training there, he joined the university’s faculty in 1973, rising to professor in 1988. During that period he spent a year studying pancreatic diseases with Charles Frey, MD, FACS, at the University of California-Davis. Upon his return to Japan, Professor Matsuno introduced the “Frey procedure” for treatment of chronic pancreatitis, and built a continuing professional relationship and friendship with Dr. Frey that has endured for four decades. In 2004, Professor Matsuno became vice-dean of the medical faculty at Tohoku, and in 2005, he was appointed director of Tohoku Koseinenkin Hospital.
Since completing his doctoral thesis on pancreatic exocrine function in 1973, Professor Matsuno has focused with laser-like intensity on pancreatic physiology, pathophysiology, and diseases and their treatment. He has authored or co-authored more than 360 original articles in English, and many more in Japanese—most as first or senior author. Along with a focus in ischemia-reperfusion injury of the liver, his research on the pancreas comprises studies of basic and translational science, pancreatic function, pancreatic microcirculation, molecular biology, and immunotherapy and gene therapy of cancer. His clinical studies on acute pancreatitis included innovative treatment with regional arterial infusion of antibiotics and protease inhibitors to prevent pancreatic necrosis and infection. Notably, he has been a central force in developing national registries and nationwide and international consensus- and evidence-based guidelines for management of necrotizing pancreatitis, chronic pancreatitis, pancreatic adenocarcinoma, and cystic tumors of the pancreas. Evidence-based consensus on cystic tumors of the pancreas resulted in the 2004 Sendai Guidelines, which have since been validated and used worldwide.
Professor Matsuno has trained more than 200 surgical fellows, and developed a school of pancreatic surgery, now conducted by many of his trainees and by his successor at Tohoku, Prof. Masao Taneka. The mantra of that school of pancreatic surgery is “one for all, all for one.”
Professor Matsuno has been an ACS Fellow since 1989 and is a member of the Society of Surgery of the Alimentary Tract, the American Gastroenterological Association, and the American Pancreatic Club, among others. He has been elected president of the Japan Society of Gastroenterology, the Japan Pancreas Society, the Japan Surgical Society (which is the equivalent of the ACS), and the International Association of Pancreatology. He is an honorary member of the American Surgical Association and the German Surgical Society. He is acknowledged to be the leading pancreatic surgeon in Japan.
Professor Matsuno and his wife, Ryoko, have three children. He is an avid mountain climber who has topped Mount Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan, and served as president of the Japanese Society for Mountain Medicine. In a moment of Japanese philosophy, perhaps underlying his teaching, he asks, “Why does the water in the pool on top of Mt. Zao never go away?” His answer: “You must go there yourself to find the truth.”
Like many Japanese people, Professor Matsuno is also an avid soccer player and fan. He notes that the victory of Japan’s women’s soccer team has been a crucial element in the nation’s spiritual recovery after the devastation of his city, Sendai, by the tsunami in 2011.
An acclaimed and beloved surgeon, investigator, mentor, and mountain climber, Seiki Matsuno believes that the leader should always walk behind the weakest.
Madam President, members of the Board of Regents, diplomates, and guests, I present Prof. Seiki Matsuno, pancreatic surgeon, innovator, teacher, and advocate, for Honorary Fellowship in the American College of Surgeons.