26 September 2020
28 October 2019
Four CUHK Researchers Receive China's Excellent Young Scientists Fund 2019

Four young researchers from The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) have been awarded China's Excellent Young Scientists Fund 2019. Each of them will receive a funding of RMB1.3 million to directly support their scientific research projects in Hong Kong to a maximum period of three years.

Access to the funding was extended for the first time this year to Hong Kong and Macau, allowing young scientists from the two Special Administrative Regions who have demonstrated achievements in basic research to further conduct research in areas of their own choice, fostering talent development in academics.

The four CUHK young researchers and their projects:

Theme

Researcher

Department

Projects Description

Vascular disease and regeneration

Prof. LUI Oi-lan, Kathy

Associate Professor, Department of Chemical Pathology

The prevalence of diabetes has risen to >10% in the Chinese population because of the obesity epidemic. The research team has discovered that diabetic patients display dysregulated immune responses after an ischemic injury that prevents vascular regeneration.

The team will further investigate the molecular mechanism underlying diabetic vascular disease and regeneration by searching for transcription factors that regulate both angiogenesis and immune cell function. The present study could provide some clinically relevant insights into the pathogenesis and regeneration of the peripheral artery system in diabetes.

Regulation of vascular homeostasis by PPARD

Prof. TIAN Xiaoyu

Assistant Professor, School of Biomedical Sciences

Diabetes and metabolic syndrome is a major risk factor of cardiovascular diseases including peripheral arterial disease. Very limited non-interventional treatment options are available for peripheral arterial disease. This project aims at investigating the beneficial effect of the nuclear receptor PPARD in the mouse model and cell model of peripheral arterial disease. Specifically, we will study whether and how PPARD modulates the vascular microenvironment, protects vascular endothelial cell function, enhances vascular integrity, reduces inflammation, and restores blood flow after ischemia. The findings of this project will help to develop new therapeutic strategies to treat peripheral arterial disease.

Electrochemical Energy Storage and Materials Interfaces

Prof. WONG Hei, Sunny

Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine and Therapeutics

Colorectal cancer is a common cancer in the world. Colorectal polyps are precancerous lesions of the cancer. Although most colorectal cancers occur through the conventional adenoma-carcinoma pathway, a significant minority (about 20%) of cancers emerge through the serrated pathway. Despite several studies to investigate the gut microbiota of colorectal cancer and adenoma, the microbiota in serrated polyps is relatively unknown.

This study will investigate the relationship between gut microbiota and specific colorectal polyps, particularly focusing on serrated polyps on their mucosal microbiota. Data from this study will provide new insight into the pathogenesis of colorectal cancer, which will guide the development of new cancer diagnosis and treatment in the future.

Electrochemical Energy Storage and Materials Interfaces

Prof. LU Yi-Chun

Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical and Automation Engineering

Energy storage plays a crucial role in enabling effective utilization of intermittent renewable energy sources and creating a sustainable transportation system. This project develops a fundamental understanding and design principles of electrochemical interfaces for electrochemical energy conversion and storage. We aim to reveal the reaction mechanisms of advanced energy storage systems from which to develop efficient materials and interface to achieve high energy density, stable, low cost and scalable rechargeable energy storage systems.

(Upper left to right) Prof. LUI Oi-lan, Kathy, Prof. TIAN Xiaoyu.
(Bottom left to right) Prof. WONG Hei, Sunny, Prof. LU Yi-Chun.