Department of Surgery

Research Questions

  • Why are some people more prone to develop cancers?
  • How can we know the functions of a gene?
  • How can we trace cancer cells in mice?
  • How can we study human cancers in animals?
Surgical Skills Centre at HKUMed
Research Areas

1. Breast Surgery

  • Breast cancer genetics, biomarkers and translational research
  • Advanced surgical technologies in management of breast disease and breast cancer
  • Epidemiological and psychosocial studies in breast cancer
  • Bio-engineering research in breast cancer
  • Oncological clinical trials

Professor A Kwong


2. Colorectal Cancer

  • Transanal total mesorectal excision for low rectal cancer
  • Application of robotic surgery in colorectal surgery
  • Functional outcomes after rectal resection
  • Screening of colorectal cancer
  • Novel biomarkers for tumour recurrence and metastasis

Dr CC Foo


3. Endocrine Surgery

  • Thyroid cancer and surgery
  • Parathyroid disease and surgery
  • Functional and non-functional adrenal tumours
  • Pancreatic neuroendocrine tumours
  • Thermal ablation of benign thyroid nodules
  • Value-based health care delivery

Professor BHH Lang


4. Oesophageal and Gastric Cancers

  • Animal cancer models
  • Treatment resistance mechanism
  • New biomarkers and treatments
  • Epigenetic studies
  • Bioimaging
Supervisor(s) Research Interest

Professor SYK Law

Oesophageal cancer

Professor KM Chu

Gastric cancer


5. Head and Neck Cancers / Plastic and Reconstruction Surgery / ENT

  • Swallowing dysfunction in head and neck cancer patients
  • Robotic surgery in head and neck area

Dr RKY Tsang


6. Head and Neck Cancers

  • Epigenetics
  • Immune responses
  • Biological therapy

Dr STS Wong


7. Liver Transplantation and Liver Regeneration

  • Transplant immunology and oncology
  • Fatty liver diseases and NASH
  • Biomarker, mechanism and treatment of disease recurrence after liver transplantation
  • Mechanism and therapeutic implication of liver regeneration


8. Liver Cancer

  • Cancer immunology and tumour microenviornment − mechanism and therapeutics
  • Hepatitis B recurrence − mechanism and therapeutics
  • NASH and cancer
  • Cholangiocarcinoma

Professor K Man


9. Hepatocellular Carcinoma

  • Cancer genomics in hepatocellular carcinoma
  • Cellular mechanism in associating liver partition and portal vein ligation for staged hepatectomy or portal vein embolisation
  • Biomarkers, mechanisms and assessment of efficacy of immunotherapy for hepatocellular carcinoma

Dr ACY Chan

  • Molecular mechanisms and therapeutic targets of hepatocarcinogenesis and metastasis
  • Chemoresistance-associated molecular targets
  • Biomarkers for post-operative hepatocellular carcinoma recurrence



10. Neurooncology

  • Translational laboratory research in molecular biology of malignant brain tumour, focusing on glioblastoma multiforme
  • Therapeutics to overcome chemotherapy drug resistance
  • The role of tumour microenvironment in malignant phenotypes
  • Interference with metabolic function cell death pathways


11. Cerebrovascular Diseases

  • Intracerebral haemorrhages in experimental animals
  • Neuroprotective measures to improve functional outcome
  • Immunological response to brain haemorrhages and therapeutic opportunities

Professor GKK Leung


12. Molecular Mechanistic Study of Developmental Disorders and Cancers Commonly Found in Children

  • Molecular basic study of Hirschsprung's disease and other related neurocristopathies
  • Molecular study of enteric nervous system development in human and mouse


13. Translational Research of Birth Defects and Related Diseases

  • Genetics, stem cell and regenerative medicine: translating disease mechanism discoveries to treatment of biliary atresia
  • Towards precision diagnostics and regenerative therapies for Hirschsprung’s disease: from genomics to cells to tissues
  • Molecular genetic study of anorectal malformations
  • Childhood cancers

Professor PKH Tam

Dr VCH Lui


14. Stem Cells and Disease Modelling

  • Molecular bases of Hirschsprung's disease and other related neurocristopathies
  • Molecular study of enteric nervous system development in human and mouse
  • Neural crest stem cells biology
  • Human pluripotent stem cell-based cell- and organoid- models of genetic disorders
  • Tumour stem/initiating cells

Professor ESW Ngan


15. Nanomedicine

  • Nanomedicine in wound healing and regeneration
  • Development of new drugs and drug delivery systems using nanotechnology


16. Thoracic Disorders in Children

  • Understanding the pathogenesis of congenital pulmonary malformation
  • Using lung organoid technology as models for paediatric thoracic disease


17. Paedaitric solid tumours

  • High throughput new drug screening for cancer using 3D culture

Dr KKY Wong


18. Study of Congenital Paediatric Conditions with Advanced Technology

  • Studying congenital hepatobiliary disorders with liver organoid
  • Pathogenesis in biliary atresia
  • Tissue engineering in paediatric surgery

Dr HY Chung


19. Urology Cancer and Surgery

  • Mechanisms of tumourigenesis
  • Epigenetic studies
  • Biomarkers for renal cell cancers
  • Treatment for prostate cancer disease
  • Advanced prostate cancer diagnositics
  • Urolithiasis
  • Complex genito-urethral reconstruction

Dr W Lam


20. Vascular Disease and Surgery

  • Pathogenesis, haemodynamics and endovascular treatment of aortic aneurysms and aortic dissections
  • Epidemiology and atherogenesis of peripheral arterial and venous diseases

Professor SWK Cheng

Next Step?

For more information or to express interest to join the research areas, please email the supervisor or the specified contact point in the description. Interested candidates are advised to enclose with your email:

  1. your CV,
  2. a brief description of your research interest and experience, and
  3. two reference letters (not required for HKUMed UG students seeking MRes[Med]/URIS projects).

Research postgraduate studies enquiries specific to the department/school’s research should be directed to the Chairman of the Departmental Research Postgraduate Committee:

Professor K Man

Information on the research programme, funding support and admission documentations could be referenced online at the Research Postgraduate Admissions website.

General admission enquiries should be directed to

Our Students

A research student working in a laboratory.
Jane Smith (Example)

Country of origin: Name of country
Progress: PhD Year X
Supervisor: Dr AB Chan

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May 2021