GC’s Makoto Nakao receives “highest honour”

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GC’s Chairman, Mr Nakao, receives Honorary Doctrate from University of Turku, Finland

A mutually beneficial relationship between GC and the University of Turku in Finland has been acknowledged with special recognition for Mr Makoto Nakao (GC Corporation Chairman and President & CEO GC International AG), who has received an Honorary Doctorate from the University’s Faculty of Medicine. At the 2017 conferment ceremony, the faculty’s one other Honorary Doctorate this year went to world-renowned expert in immunology and stem cell biology Professor Irving Weissman from Stanford University.

Awards are not unusual for the Nakao family, which has run GC since 1921, but Mr Nakao said the doctorate from Turku University was his highest honour to date. “For me, this is the most significant personal recognition that I have received,” he told the audience at the conferment ceremony in Turku. His previous international honours have come from the business sector, science communities and governments.

Mr Nakao (above) said he started collaborating with the University of Turku in 1999, and that cooperation became even closer after the founding of the Stick Tech company. GC has had considerable success working with Turku Clinical Biomaterials Centre in developing preventive bioactive composites for oral healthcare, and especially composites for gerodontology. In 2013, this led to the manufacture of a dental composite that has since won five different innovation and quality awards.

A vital player in the GC-Turku partnership is Professor Pekka Vallittu, Director of the Clinical Biomaterials Centre. Prof Vallittu noted that GC is one of the world’s largest developers, manufacturers and sellers of oral biomaterials. He said that one aim of the collaboration was to give the University's researchers information about the needs of the industry as early as possible.

The 2017 Doctoral Degree conferment ceremony was doubly auspicious because the year marks Finland’s 100th anniversary. Rector Kalervo Väänänen reminded the audience that the Turku Finnish University Society was established just a month before Finland’s Declaration of Independence in 1917. The University of Turku was founded three years later, and honorary conferments began in 1927.

Picture caption (top) L-R: Professor Juha Varrela Univerity of Turku, Mr Makoto Nakao, and others, celebrate Mr Nakao's Honorary Degree