Professor Watanabe graduated from Osaka University in 1963 and obtained his MD in the following year. He then undertook a PhD in biochemistry and on obtaining his postgraduate award in 1968 he became Assistant Professor at Osaka University. He went to work in America with Professor Esmond Snell at the University of California, Berkley from 1970-72 and then at the National Institute of Health with Dr Martin Flavin until 1974. On returning to Japan, he was made Assistant and then Associate Professor in Pharmacology at Osaka University. Here he worked with Dr. H. Wada on various aspects of histamine research. In 1985 he was Professor of Pharmacology at Tohoku University School of Medicine and then Professor Emeritus on his retirement in 2002. Professor Watanabe has published over 300 papers, was the co-editor on 2 important histamine books: ‘Histaminergic Neurons; Morphology and Function’ in 1991 and ‘Histamine Research in the New Millennium’ in 2001. His major contributions to histamine research have been the immunohistochemical identification of histamine neurons in the hypothalamus using an antibody specific for histidine decarboxylase, the use of positron Emission Tomography studies on the histaminergic neuron system and the development of Histamine-related Genes Knockout mice. He organized 2 highly successful international meetings on histamine research.