Scientific research has brought major changes to the world. CUHK brings together top researchers for the incubation of world-leading technologies into tangible applications and products under the university’s support. Advances in the fields of life and health technology, artificial intelligence, smart cities, robotics, and environment and sustainability have been in the spotlight in recent years. CUHK Innovation reveals the stories of CUHK scholars and alumni, and how they have applied innovative technologies in these fields to improve people’s health and life.
Remarkable research and innovation from CUHK have reaped multiple awards at this year’s International Exhibition of Inventions of Geneva. A CUHK professor also received the honour of AIMBE College Fellowship in recognition of his novel technology for rehabilitation and his contribution to the education of biomedical engineering.
The Microbiota I-Centre of CUHK has identified distinct gut microbiome profiles that can characterise “long COVID”. This is the world’s first study to demonstrate gut microbiota as a key determinant of long COVID. These distinct gut microbial signatures can be used as a diagnostic tool and to guide therapy.
People who have recovered from a COVID-19 infection may suffer from poor memory, hair loss, difficulty in sleeping and other long-term consequences, which are commonly known as “long COVID”. CU Medicine has found that patients with long COVID have a less diverse gut microbiome, indicating that gut microbiome composition may be linked to the risk of developing long COVID, while gut microbiota modulation could facilitate timely recovery and reduce the burden of post-acute COVID-19 syndrome.
Playing a major role in enhancing the quality of human life, healthcare technologies, artificial intelligence and robotics technologies are the international global trends in the development of innovation and technology. CUHK has established six InnoHK Centres covering health, biomedicine, robotics and artificial intelligence in partnership with prestigious global universities.
Sinovac and BioNTech work more effectively in people who have an abundance amount of a particular bacterium called Bifidobacterium adolescentis in their gut. In most of us, this reduces with age, modern diet, stress, and the use of antibiotics, and a joint CUHK-HKU study has found that those who lack it have a lower antibody response to the vaccines. This implies that modulating the gut has potential to power up the impact of COVID vaccines.
A low sensitivity faecal test is used to screen for colorectal cancer. Its cause, polyps can only be detected by a probing colonoscopy. Now a CUHK Medicine team has devised a first ever, highly sensitive, non-invasive “bacterial gene markers” test on faeces. It is 94% sensitive to the cancer, and over 90% sensitive to recurring polyps - which the present test can’t detect at all.
Constant academic pursuit by scholars is essential to driving improvements in life and social progress. Scholars and research studies from CUHK have received international and national awards in various disciplines over the past few months, with research excellence widely recognised.
A university research team has found that lower levels of “good” bacteria and higher levels of “bad” bacteria in the gut of people with COVID-19 has made it harder for them to fight off the virus. The team has since developed a probiotic supplement based on this research to enhance the “good” bacteria thereby offering hope to boosting immunity against the virus in everyone who could be at risk.
Stool, found to be a “shed” for the coronavirus. According to the latest study, the coronavirus was found in faeces samples from 14 COVID-19 patients, regardless of the severity of their condition. 3 of them still had virus even though their respiratory secretions were cleared of the virus. Researchers suggest faeces test as an alternative screening.