In 2005, the University celebrated the inauguration of the first 8 Endowed Professorships,
a milestone in the University's history.
To date, a total of 116 Endowed Professorships have been established.
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Professor Y W Kan

Y W Kan Professorship in Natural Sciences

"In recognition of the contribution of Professor Y W Kan over twenty years to the work of the Foundation and to Hong Kong science, the Trustees of the Croucher Foundation are proud to establish the Y W Kan Professorship in Natural Sciences. Professor Kan is a Fellow of the Royal Society, a member of the US National Academy of Sciences, a member of the Academia Sinica, a foreign member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and an internationally-renowned pioneer in the field of human genetics."

The Croucher Foundation

Leung Suet-Yi

Leung Suet-Yi

Appointed in 2012

Professor C Y Wang was appointed as the first Professor of Pathology at The University of Hong Kong in 1920 after graduating from the Hong Kong College of Medicine. At the time the predominant causes of mortality were tropical diseases, mainly infections and parasites. Today the Department of Pathology has 21 full-time academic staff who are actively pursuing research on Histopathology and Molecular Oncology, Immunology, Haematology, and State Key Laboratory for Liver Research..

Professor Leung Suet-Yi is known for her expertise in molecular genetics and genomics of gastrointestinal cancer. Her study is focused on understanding how cancers develop through gene mutations or epigenetic modifications, and the application of these knowledge in cancer prevention and treatment. Her laboratory has made systematic study into the cause of Lynch Syndrome (a common form of hereditary colon cancer) and discovered a novel mechanism of genetic disease inheritance through deletion of the 3' exons of a neighbouring gene named EPCAM (TACSTD1) leading to methylation and switching-off of the MSH2 gene promoter. These findings have resulted in incorporation of EPCAM deletion into the standard genetic diagnosis protocol for Lynch Syndrome worldwide.

Professor Leung's team has published the world's first comprehensive exome sequencing study of stomach cancer and discovered many new cancer driver genes. Her laboratory has generated some of the world's largest genomics databases of gastrointestinal cancer and identified many novel tumour suppressor genes, prognostic biomarkers and genes that contributed to stem cell maintenance that have potential for therapeutic development.

Professor Leung graduated from the Medical Faculty of HKU in 1986. She then underwent specialist training in Anatomical Pathology in the Department of Pathology, Queen Mary Hospital and became a Member of the Royal College of Pathologists in 1992; Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia and Hong Kong College of Pathologists in 1993. She obtained the Doctor of Medicine degree in The University of Hong Kong in 1998. She became a Founding Fellow of the Faculty of Science of the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia in 2011.

She joined the Department of Pathology at HKU in 1993 as a Lecturer and became a Professor in 2006. She has been Visiting Scholars of Cambridge University and Stanford University.

Apart from performing surgical pathology clinical practice for Queen Mary Hospital, she also runs a charitable genetic diagnosis service for putative hereditary gastrointestinal cancer patients throughout Hong Kong.

Professor Leung was the recipient of the Croucher Senior Medical Fellowship and HKU's Outstanding Researcher Award in 2007, and won the Research Output Prize at The University of Hong Kong in 2007 and 2009. She has been on the Editorial Board of 4 medical journals and is frequently invited to give talks at overseas conferences. She has published 124 journal articles with a total citation of 7,357 and a h-index of 37. Representative publications include articles in Nature Genetics, Nature, PNAS, Am. J. Human Genetics, Gastroenterology and Cancer Research.