Research Projects
Genomics Approaches to the Study of Inherited Genetic Susceptibility to Nasopharyngeal and Oesophageal Carcinomas Development and the Study of Tumour Suppressor Genes (TSGs) Contributing to Cancer Pathogenesis

Programme(s) to which this project applies:

☒ MPhil/PhD ☑ MRes[Med] ☒ URIS
About the Project


Utilization of NGS approaches and SNP analyses to identify genes associated with high-risk populations with an inherited genetic susceptibility to cancers of special interest in Hong Kong, namely nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) and esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC).

Functional characterization of TSGs of interest contributing to cancer development.


NPC and ESCC are cancers of special interest among Chinese. Understanding their genetic basis and identifying biomarkers for diagnosis and prediction of clinical outcome is important.

Early detection of cancers improves clinical outcomes for patients. Identifying genes and SNPs associated with genetic risk for cancer may be useful for endemic population screening.

Characterization of the function of TSGs associated with cancer biology will aid in identifying genes and pathways driving cancer development and provide molecular targets for therapy.

Research Plan and Methodology:

Identify high-risk individuals such as patients with a family history of the cancer and/or early age onset of the cancers of interest.

Utilize NGS analysis of the genomes of high-risk individuals and use of bioinformatics approaches to identify candidate genes of interest associated with cancer development.

Use of in vitro and in vivo functional and mechanistic studies to determine the contribution of genes of interest to cancer pathogenesis. Cell proliferation, angiogenesis, EMT, and other properties of cancer cells will be studied.

About the Supervisor

Professor ML Lung, Department of Clinical Oncology


Next Step?

For more information or to express interest for this project, please email the supervisor or the specified contact point in the project 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).

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

HKUMed MBBS students interested in the Master of Research in Medicine (MRes[Med]) programme may visit the programme website for more information.  

HKUMed UG students interested in the Undergraduate Research Internship Scheme (URIS) may visit the scheme’s website for more information.