Research Projects
Postmarketing safety of biologics in inflammatory arthritis

Programme(s) to which this project applies:

☑ MPhil/PhD ☑ MRes[Med] ☑ URIS

Objectives and Significance

Regional, population-specific medication safety assessment is essential to optimize prescribing practice and reassure medication adherence.

Research Plan and Methodology:

Using territory-wide, population-based electronic health records, this study will apply multiple classic and novel pharmacoepidemiology study design, including propensity-score-technic based cohort study, case-control study, self-controlled case series study and/or interrupted time series analyses to investigate the postmarketing medication safety of biologics used in inflammatory arthritis.

Essential skills will be trained and developed including routine care data manipulation, statistics and programming , mindsets for pharmacoepidemiology study design and results interpretation.

Professor SX Li, Department of Medicine

With over 10 years of experience in real-world and outcome research (HEOR) and decision analytics, I am currently working as an Assistant Professor at HKUMed. My research passion lies in bridging real-world evidence, disease simulation modelling and decision analytics for transparent and evidence-based health policymaking for cutting-edge innovative medicine (e.g. biologics, precision medicine, vaccine) and healthcare interventions (e.g. AI tools for screening and clinical decision assistance). 

My research often involves dynamic interactions with local and international academic collaborators, local government, industry partners, NGOs and other key opinion leaders. As the principal investigator of several HEOR projects funded by the Hong Kong government, I have led research projects covering the therapeutic areas of mental health, cardiovascular diseases, autoimmune diseases, oncology, rare genetic disorders and vaccinology, and published in world-leading medical journals such as Annals of Internal Medicine, JAMA Pediatrics, Annals of the Rheumatic Disease, eClinicalMedicine and Lancet Regional Health Western Pacific. I have co-authored ~120 peer-reviewed articles (total citation ~2800; H-index 28 as of Feb 2024) and have been selected as the Top 2% most cited scientists by Stanford University. As a Project Coordinator, I also lead the first Horizon Scanning project funded by the RGC Research Impact Fund to launch the HEOR training and root the Health Technology Assessment ecosystem for early innovative adoption in Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area.

My current team (Xue’s lab) includes 12 full-time Postdoc/PhD/MPhil students and research fellows. With a team spirit of Proactive – Empathy – Resilience – Teamwork, and Self-motivation (X-PERTS), we embrace and enjoy the open research environment, international collaboration, and breakthrough methodologies in health science. Please email for full-time or part-time Postdoc/PhD/MPhil/RA opportunities. 

HKU Scholars Hub
Lab Homepage

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.