Professor Chan Ying-Shing
Director of Campus Development and Infrastructure cum
Senior Advisor to the Dean
Professor Ying-Shing Chan graduated from The University of Hong Kong (HKU) and received his postdoctoral training at the Institute of Human Physiology at Pisa, Italy, and The Rockefeller University, USA. He is Senior Advisor to the Dean of Medicine, and was appointed the Dexter H C Man Family Professor in Medical Science of HKU in 2014. He also served as the Associate Dean (Research), Associate Dean (Academic Networking and Student Affairs), Associate Dean (Development and Infrastructure), Head of Department of Physiology, Deputy Director of the School of Biomedical Sciences, Co-Convenor of the HKU Strategic Research Theme on Neuroscience, and Director of HKU Neuroscience Research Center.
Professor Chan is an elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology. He is the recipient of the First Medallion of the Australian Neuroscience Society. He has been invited by the Nobel Committee to nominate candidate(s) for the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. He also received the HKU Outstanding Researcher Award. He has a long record of commitment to education and was awarded the HKU Outstanding Research Student Supervisor Award and Medical Faculty Teaching Medal. He served as Co-Chair of the International Scientific Program Committee of the 39th Congress of International Union of Physiological Sciences (IUPS), Chair of International Brain Research Organization (IBRO) Asian/Pacific Regional Committee, President of Federation of Asian-Oceania Neuroscience Societies (FAONS), Vice-President of The Chinese Association for Physiological Sciences, Standing Executive Committee Member of the Chinese Neuroscience Society, President of Hong Kong Society of Neurosciences, and Secretary-General of the Hong Kong Brain Foundation.
He is currently President of the Asian Pacific Society for Neurochemistry (APSN), Chair of the IUPS Commission on Neurobiology, and Executive Committee Member of U21 Health Sciences Group. He served as a panel member (Biology & Medicine) of the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong and the RAE Exercise (Health Sciences) conducted by the University Grants Committee of Hong Kong. He is the Editor-in-Chief for IBRO Neuroscience Reports and Associate Editor for European Journal of Neuroscience. Professor Chan’s research interests include synaptic mechanisms underlying plastic modification of neural networks for spatial learning as well as the exploitation of human bone marrow stromal cell-derived glial cells and neurons in the re-assembly of functional neural circuits in neurodegenerative diseases.
Neural plasticity: Circuitry development & rewiring after injury
Professor Chan’s research goal is to probe mechanisms that allow plastic modification of neural networks for spatial cognition. His team revealed a postnatal period critical to the assembly of brainstem circuits responsible for spatial navigation. Fine-tuning of these circuits require participation of parvalbumin neurons as revealed by pharmacological, viral tracing and chemo-/ optogenetic approaches. Excitatory-inhibitory balance in these circuits tunes synaptic plasticity that effects behavioral outcomes. Our finding that neuromodulators (such as endocannabinoid, serotonin, cholecystokinin) induce or reset experience-dependent synaptic plasticity highlights the impact of such agents on the acquisition of spatial learning.
Professor Chan’s team provided insights into signaling pathways that enhance derivation of myelinating glia and neurons from human bone marrow stromal cells. Findings hold promise for facilitating the re-assembly of functional neuronal networks after neural trauma and in neurodegenerative diseases.
1994 – 00 | Research Grants Council (RGC), Advanced Level Biology & Medicine Panel
1998 – 03 | National Natural Science Foundation of China / RGC Joint Research Scheme
1999, 2006 | Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), Health Sciences Panel, University Grants Council, HK Government
2009 – 12 | Selection Panel of Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme, University Grants Council, HK Government
2015 – present | Grant Review Board of the Health and Medical Research Fund, HK Government
2015 – present | IBRO Neuroscience Reports
2010 – 19 | Acta Physiologica Sinica
2013 – 17 | Neuroscience Research
2013 – present | European Journal of Neuroscience
2018 – 20 | Journal of Neurophysiology
Editorial Board member
2004 – present | Behavioral and Brain Functions
2006 – present | Experimental Brain Research
2010 – present | Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology
2010 – present | Journal of Physiological Sciences
2011 – present | Neural Regeneration Research
2011 – present | Neuroscience Bulletin
2013 – present | International Journal of Experimental & Clinical Physiology
2013 – present | International Journal of Brain Science
2020– present | Journal of Chemical Anatomy