Newsletter No. 232

Hope for Victims of Spinal Cord Injury W orld-renowned neuroscientis t Prof. Wise Young delivered a 40th Anniversary Distinguishe d Lectur e o n 'The Bases for Hope in Spinal Cord Injury Research' o n 5t h Decembe r a t th e Postgraduate Educatio n Centr e o f th e Prince o f Wales Hospital . Prof. Young, recognized as one of the w o r l d ' s mo s t o u t s t a n d i n g a n d compassionate neu r os c i enc t i s t , i s professor an d chair a t the Department o f Cell Biolog y an d Neuroscience , W.M . K e c k C e n t e r o f C o l l a b o r a t i v e Neu r os c i ence, Rutgers , Th e Stat e University o f New Jersey . He was named 'America's Best ' in the field of spinal cord injury researc h i n August 200 1 by Time magazine. In his lecture, Prof. Young explaine d advances i n th e clinica l treatmen t o f spinal cor d injur y an d the clinica l trial s underway. I n th e pas t seve n years , th e field o f spina l cor d injur y researc h ha s transformed fro m on e o f pessimis m t o hope. Tw o deepl y entrenche d dogma s concerning th e centra l nervou s syste m have bee n overturned . I n 1996 , mos t scientists though t tha t n o ne w neuron s were bor n i n th e adul t centra l nervou s system. Now i t is known that neuropoiesis occurs i n the adult brain and spinal cord . Likewise, mos t scientist s thin k tha t th e spinal cor d cannot regenerate . Yet man y therapies hav e been shown to regenerat e the spina l cords o f animals. Advances i n surgery, rehabilitation, and medicine have also revolutionized the clinical treatmen t of spina l cor d injury . Two CUHK Members Honoured by Chinese Academy of Sciences T wo member s o f th e Un i v e r s i t y were amon g fou r Hon g Konger s r e c en t ly electe d f r o m amon g 30 9 candidates a s members b y th e Chines e Academy o f Sciences . Th e C U H K recipients wer e Prof . Ch i W u ( l e f t ) , professor o f chemistry, an d Prof. Josep h W.Y. La u ( r i g h t ) , professor o f surgery , w h o w e r e h o n o u r e d f o r t h e i r contributions t o thei r respectiv e fields . Membership o f the Chinese Academy o f Sciences i s the highest scientifi c honou r in China. The academy currently ha s 688 members. Th e announcemen t wa s mad e on 24th November 2003 . Certificates o f membershi p wer e presented to Hong Kong recipients on 5th December b y Prof . L u Yongx i ang , president o f the academy , wh o cam e t o Hong Kon g speciall y fo r th e purpose . Prof. Chi Wu said that the honour was not hi s alon e bu t tha t o f hi s colleague s and students a s well. 'Sinc e I joined Th e Chinese University, the whole Universit y from th e managemen t t o m y researc h team member s an d student s hav e give n me tremendous support. I want to take this opportunity t o thank them. I als o want t o thank Prof . Kennet h Young wh o helpe d me revise my first application for research grants.' Prof. W u emphasize d tha t th e award is not 'th e en d of the game'. No t only doe s he not intend to celebrate, he didn't eve n inform his wife right away . He w i l l continu e w i t h hi s researc h according t o schedule . Prof. Josep h Lau believes tha t th e award i s an affirmation o f his work . ' I have learn t s o muc h fro m patients , colleagues, an d students. It i s my dut y t o repay society. ' H e hope s t o continu e contributing t o his motherland, especiall y in fosterin g communicatio n betwee n mainland scientist s an d thei r Wester n counterparts. Prof. La u pointed ou t tha t althoug h much progres s ha s bee n achieve d i n scientific developmen t o n the mainland , Chinese scientist s hav e no t receive d th e attention the y deserve . 'Thi s i s becaus e they publish in Chinese and most of them are no t to o proficien t i n English . Thi s hinders communicatio n wit h th e West . Besides the y don ' t hav e tha t man y o p p o r t u n i t i es t o atten d academi c conferences overseas . This furthe r limit s their academi c network, ' h e explained . He w i ll continue to devote himself to academic exchang e activitie s o n th e mainland. Th e long-ter m goa l i s helpin g to trai n youn g surgeon s t o publis h an d lecture in English. The medium-term goa l is helping t o brin g Chin a t o th e world' s academic stag e an d t o i mpo r t ne w advances i n Wester n medicin e int o th e mainland. An d th e short-ter m goa l i s i n t r o d u c i n g E n g l i s h - p r o f i c i e n t individuals o f China's surgical field to the international arena . Changing Roles of Asian Women under Globalization A round 8 0 academic s fro m across Asi a attende d th e i n t e r na t i onal conferenc e o n 'Globalization an d Gender : th e Implications o f Global Economi c Restructuring for Women in China and Southeas t Asia' , hel d fro m 27th t o 29t h Novembe r 200 3 a t the Cho Yiu Conference Hall. Th e conference wa s organize d by th e Gender Researc h Centr e o f th e Hong Kon g Institut e o f Asia - Pac i f ic Studies , th e Gende r Studies Programm e o f CUHK , and the Women's Studie s Centr e of Peking University. An academi c even t to celebrat e th e Un i v e r s i t y ' s 40t h anniversary, th e function was sponsore d by the University, Chung Chi College, the Canadian Internationa l Developmen t Agency, For d Foundatio n China , th e Global Fun d fo r Wome n (USA) , Th e Asian Institute, and the United Board fo r Higher Educatio n i n Asia. There wer e pane l session s o n women i n processes o f change i n Chin a and Southeas t Asia , globalizatio n an d women's healt h i n China an d Southeas t A s i a , w o m e n o r g a n i z i n g f o r emp o w e r me nt i n th e c o n t e x t o f globalization, workin g wome n i n Chin a and Southeas t Asia, wome n addressin g fragmentation an d conflict , wome n i n chang i ng gende r role s an d f am i l y r e l a t i ons, a s w e l l a s a r ound t ab l e discussion o n synthese s an d lessons fo r gender-responsive policies . Speakers include d researcher s an d experts fro m Canada , mainlan d China , Hong Kong , India , Indonesia , Malaysia , the Philippines , Taiwan , an d Thailand . Plaque Unveiling Ceremony of Alumni Garden C lose t o a hundred guest s attende d the u n v e i l i n g ceremon y o f th e commemorative plaqu e gracing the ne w A l umni Garden , locate d betwee n th e swimming poo l and John Fulton Centre , on 30t h November . Attendee s include d pro-vice-chancellors Prof . P.W. L i u an d Prof. Jac k Cheng, the four colleg e head s or t h e i r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s , s t a f f , representatives o f the Convocatio n an d a l umni associations , ma j o r a l umn i donors, an d oversea s alumn i f r o m 1 4 cities f r o m th e US , Canada , th e UK , Australia, New Zealand , Singapore , an d Taiwan. Th e ceremon y wa s performe d by Prof . Ambrose King , vice-chancello r of th e University . The Alumni Garde n was establishe d to p r omo t e th e suppor t o f C U H K alumni t o thei r alm a mater . As a toke n of thanks to the alumni, a special plaqu e carrying th e name s o f CUH K alumn i who hav e donate d HK$50,00 0 o r mor e to suppor t the University's developmen t over th e year s w i l l b e installe d i n th e garden. G.H. Choa Cardiovascular Centre Opens T he G.H. Choa Cardiovascular Centr e officially opene d a t th e Princ e o f Wales Hospita l o n 1s t Decembe r 2003 . The centr e i s funde d b y a generou s donation fro m Dr . th e Honourabl e Quo - wei Lee, chairman of Wei Lun Foundation L t d . an d f o r me r c h a i rma n o f th e University Council , and a matching gran t from the Hospital Authority. Th e facilit y is named after the late Prof. Gerald Hug h Choa, forme r directo r o f medica l an d health service s o f Hong Kong , foundin g dean of the CUHK Facult y o f Medicine , and forme r pro-vice-chancello r o f th e University, i n commemoratio n o f hi s distinguished contribution s t o medica l and health services and medical education in Hong Kong . Dr. Quo-we i Lee ; Mrs . Pegg y Choa ; Dr. Willia m Ho , chie f executiv e o f th e Hospital Au t ho r i t y ; Dr . Joh n Chan , chairman o f th e Hospita l Governin g Committee of the Prince of Wales Hospital; Dr. Edga r Cheng , chairma n o f th e University Council ; an d Prof . Ambros e King, vice-chancello r o f th e University , officiated at the opening ceremony . The ne w centr e i s equippe d w i t h state-of-the-art f ac i l i t i e s t o ensur e excellence i n performance an d safety o f percutaneous coronar y interventio n o r balloon angioplast y wit h stenting—a n effective treatmen t fo r coronar y arter y d i s e a s e . T h e n e w l y a c q u i r e d cardiovascular imagin g biplane system i n the centr e ca n hel p medica l worker s complete interventio n procedure s wit h greatly improve d imag e qualit y i n a shorter time and with improved safety fo r both patient s an d operators . Afte r th e installation o f th e ne w equipment , th e centre w i l l operat e w i t h tw o cardia c catheter procedure rooms , and the Princ e of Wales Hospital w i ll b e able to provid e an expande d an d imp r ove d cardia c service fo r New Territorie s East . No. 232 19th December 2003