Newsletter No. 263

Support for 18 Projects T he following 1 8 research projects undertake n by facult y member s o f the Universit y have attracted funding support from various quarters : O Chinese-Putonghua Learning Software (Hong Kong Dialect Clinic) (HK$140,000) Sponsor: Incentiv e Scheme for Developing Instructional Softwar e Principal investigator: Dr. Cheun g Lai-yin (Centre for Research and Development of Putonghua Education, HKIER ) O Web-based Language Awareness Learning Package for English Teachers (HK$436,500) Sponsor: Qualit y Education Fund Principal investigator: Dr . Jose Lai (English Language Teaching Unit ) O A Pilot Study of Curcumin for Treating Alzheimer's Disease (£12,260) Sponsor: Th e Bupa Foundation Specialist Research Grants 2005 themed 'Healt h and Care of Older People ' Principal investigator: Prof . Larry Baum (Department o f Medicine an d Therapeutics) From the Health and Health Services Research Fund O Developmen t o f th e OMQo L : A n Oropharyngea l Mucositis-specifi c Measure of Qua l i t y of Life i n Patients w i t h Cancer Therapy (HK$277,340) Principal investigator: Dr. Kari s Cheng Kin-fong (Nethersol e Schoo l of Nursing) O A Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial: The Effect of Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction Programme on Pain, as we l l as Qua l i ty of Life i n Chronic Pain Sufferer s (HK$399,000 ) Principal investigator: Prof. Samuel Wong Yeung-shan (Department o f Communit y and Family Medicine ) O Postpartum Depression Amo n g Ho ng Kong Chinese Me n (HK$794,529) Principal investigator: Prof. Domini c Le e Tak-shing (Departmen t o f Psychiatry ) O Cancer Patients w i t h Fever and Neutropenia: A Prospective Evaluation of Risk Assessment Tools and Infectious Etiology i n Ho ng Kong (HK$199,949) Principal investigator: Dr . Edwin Hui Pun (Department o f Clinical Oncology ) O A Randomize d Controlle d Tria l fo r th e Cost-effectivenes s o f Us i n g Dermabond (2-Octyl Cyanoacrylate) Versus Suture i n the Lacerated Wound Closure (HK$241,246) Principal investigator: Prof. Eliz a Wong Mi-ling (Nethersol e Schoo l of Nursing) From the Research Fund for the Control of Infectious Diseases O Identificatio n o f T-cel l Epitopes o f SARS-coronavirus : Provid e Fundamental Data for the Design of Peptide-based Vaccines and the Development o f Peptide-base d Cellula r I mmu n i t y Assessmen t Method s (HK$755,610) Principal investigator: Prof. Paul Chan Kay-sheung (Department o f Microbiology ) O Rol e o f Hepatiti s B V i ms Covalentl y Close d Circula r D N A i n Determination of Treatment Outcome (HK$800,472) Principal investigator: Dr. Henr y Chan Lik-yuen (Department o f Medicine an d Therapeutics) O Sequencing Analysis of 3' Region of cagA Gene i n Helicobacter Pylori Isolated f r om Ho ng Kong Chinese Patients w i t h D i f f e r ent H. Pylori- associated Diseases (HK$574,246) Principal investigator: Prof. T o Ka-fai (Department o f Anatomical and Cellular Pathology) O Genetic Studies of Tuberculosis: Analysis of Tuberculosis Susceptibility Genes i n th e Chemokine-gene s Cluste r Regio n o f Chromosom e 1 7 i n Chinese (HK$786,420 ) Principal investigator: Prof . Nelson Tang Leung-sang (Department o f Chemica l Pathology) O Establishmen t o f a Public Noroviru s Genom e Databas e i n Ho n g Ko n g (HK$784,840) Principal investigator: Dr . Leung Wai-keung (Department o f Medicine an d Therapeutics) O Immunogenetic s an d V i r al Geno t yp i n g o f Ho n g Kon g Hepatiti s B Viru s Carriers for the Increased Risk of Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HK$669,428) Principal investigator: Prof. Margare t H.L. Ng (Departmen t o f Anatomical an d Cellular Pathology ) O Development of Rapid Molecular Methods for the Detection and Epidemiological Investigatio n o f Food-born e Outbreak s (HK$667,492 ) Principal investigator: Dr. Juli a Ling Mei-lun (Department o f Microbiology ) O T o Determine th e Prevalenc e an d Ris k Factor s fo r STDs / H I V fo r Femal e Street and Brothel Sex Workers i n Ho n g Kong (HK$688,525) Principal investigator: Dr. William C.W. Wong (Department o f Community an d Family Medicine ) O A Comparativ e Stud y o f Nasopharyngea l Aspirat e an d Nasa l Swa b Specimens for the Diagnosis of Causative Agent i n Acute V i r a l Respiratory Infection (HK$510,600 ) Principal investigator: Prof . Rita Sung Yn Tz (Department o f Paediatrics) O Mental Health Impact of SARS to Patients: A Prospective Study (HK$654,557) Principal investigator: Prof. Win g Yun-kwok (Departmen t o f Psychiatry) Chinese Musi c Archive Receives Jockey Club Donatio n T he Chines e Musi c Archiv e o f th e Musi c Department received a donation of HK$3.76 million from the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust i n Jun e 2005 , supportin g th e archive' s operation an d researc h fo r th e comin g fiv e years. With this donation, the archive will implemen t a serie s o f plan s t o strengthe n it s wor k i n pre - servation, audio-visual digitalization, and general education, and broaden its support of research and publications. Th e archiv e welcome s visit s b y individuals an d groups. Please contact archivist , Mr. Wong, at 2609 6555 during office hours. News from the Medical Faculty Screening and Liver Cancer Research findings o f the Department of Clinical Oncology confir m that intensiv e screenin g an d surveillance programme s hav e significant impac t o n th e earl y detection o f live r cancer . Th e department screene d ove r a thousand hepatiti s B carrier s b y serum alfa-fetoprotein (AFP ) an d abnormal ultrasoun d ( AUS ) between 199 7 and 2000. Those wit h AFP o f les s tha n 20 ng/d l o r abnorma l AUS wer e enrolled on an intensive screenin g programme whereas those with normal AFP/UAS were followed routinely. In the first batch of carriers, an annual liver cancer risk of 6.8 per cen t was found , compare d to the much lowe r annua l rat e o f 0. 3 pe r cen t o f th e second batch. Antibiotic Resistance i n Salmonellae Studies i n v e s t i ga t i n g th e mechanism s o f fluoroquinolone-resistance i n salmonellae conducted by the Department of Microbiology have shown that resistance is due to the presence of genetic mutations. The more resistant a strain is, the more mutations i t has. Even if a strain appears to be susceptible, it has a mutation and treatment by fluoroquinolone s wil l fail. Th e result s wer e publishe d i n Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. Th e findings underscor e the nee d t o preven t an d contro l th e sprea d o f antibiotic resistance . Strategie s includ e rapi d detection o f resistan t organisms , avoidanc e o f antibiotic abus e in humans and animals, and patient compliance in antibiotic treatment . Colorectal Neoplasm Most Prevalent i n HK Chinese The Institute o f Digestive Disease s led endoscopists from 1 4 Asian cities to form the Asia Pacifi c Workin g Grou p o n Colorecta l Cance r i n 2003 . Th e grou p studie d the epidemiology o f colorecta l neoplasm i n Asia. I n a six-month surve y o f ove r 7,00 0 colonoscopies performed in different Asian populations, it was found that the prevalence of colorectal neoplasm was highest among Chinese than other ethnic groups in Southeast Prof. Tong Mok, principalinvestigator(left2) Prof. Julia Ling announcing the findings Prof. Joseph Sung 2 No. 263 4t h September 2005