Contact Information
Research Team
Name Position Office Phone Email
Hin Kit KOUResearch AssistantE12-3048hinkitkou@um.edu.mo
Chiteng LEIPhD StudentE12-3048
Zhengyin GAOPhD StudentE12-3048
Weng I LEIPhD StudentE12-3048
Wanjun YUANPhD StudentE12-3048
Duo XIEPhD Student
Mengdi LIPhD Student
PhD Department of Zoology, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
MPhil Department of Biochemistry, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
BSc Department of Biochemistry, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
2021 – Present Associate Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Macau
2015 – 2021 Assistant Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Macau
2007 – 2015 Research Assistant Professor, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
2005 – 2007 Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Zoology, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Research Interests
  1. Application of dendrimer – small RNA drugs in cancer therapy
  2. The role of GPCR biased signaling in ovarian cancer
  3. Renin-Angiotensin System in cancers
Representative Publications
Top 30 publications

For the full publication list, please refer the Pubmed My Bibliography:


  1. YF Xiong, R Ke, QY Zhang, WJ Lan, WJ Yuan, KNI Chan, T Roussel, YF Jiang, J Wu, S Liu, AST Wong, JS Shim, XJ Zhang, RY Xie, N Dusetti, J Iovanna, N Habib, L Peng, LTO Lee# 2022 Small activating RNA modulation of the G protein-coupled receptor for cancer treatment. Advanced Science doi: 10.1002/advs.202200562.
  2. P Ahuja, X Bi, CF Ng, MCL Tse, M Hang, BPS Pang, ECY Iu, WS Chan, XC Ooi, A Sun, O Herlea-Pana, Z Liu, X Yang, B Jiao, X Ma, KKL Wu, LTO Lee, KKY Cheng, CW Lee, CB Chan 2022 Src homology 3 domain binding kinase 1 protects against hepatic steatosis and insulin resistance through the Nur77- fibroblast growth factor 21 pathway. Hepatology doi: 10.1002/hep.32501.
  3. Z Gao, WI Lei, and LTO Lee# 2022 The role of neuropeptide-stimulated cAMP-EPACs signalling in cancer cells Molecules 27(1), 311
  4. R Ke, SIS Lok, K Singh, BKC Chow, H Janovjak and LTO Lee# 2021 Formation of Kiss1R/GPER heterocomplexes negatively regulates Kiss1R-mediated signalling through limiting receptor cell surface expression J Mol Biol 443(7) 166843
  5. QY Zhang, W Zhou, S Yu, Y Ju, SKY To, AST Wong, Y Jiao, TCW Poon, KY Tam, LTO Lee# 2020 Metabolic reprogramming of ovarian cancer involves ACSL1-mediated metastasis stimulation through upregulated protein myristoylation Oncogene 440(1) 97-111
  6. R Ke, SIS Lok, K Singh, BKC Chow, LTO Lee# 2020 GIP receptor suppresses PAC1 receptor-mediated neuronal differentiation via formation of a receptor heterocomplex J Neurochem doi: 10.1111/jnc.15220. [Epub ahead of print]
  7. X Yang, F Hu, JA Liu, S Yu, MPL Cheung, X Liu, IO Ng, XY Guan, KKW Wong, R Sharma, HL Lung, Y Jiao, LTO Lee, M Cheung 2020 Nuclear DLC1 exerts oncogenic function through association with FOXK1 for cooperative activation of MMP9 expression in melanoma. Oncogene 39(20) 4061-4076
  8. SS Li, CKM Ip, MYH Tang, Y Tong, J Zhang, AA Hassan, ASC Mak, S Yung, TM Chan, PP Ip, CL Lee, PCN Chiu, LTO Lee, HC Lai, HZ Zeng, HC Shum, AST Wong 2019 Sialyl Lewisx-P-selectin cascade mediates tumor-mesothelial adhesion in ascitic fluid shear flow Nat Commun 10(1):2406
  9. QY Zhang, S Yu, MMT Lam, TCW Poon, LT Sun, Y Jiao, AST Wong, LTO Lee# 2019 Angiotensin II promotes ovarian cancer spheroid formation and metastasis by upregulation of lipid desaturation and suppression of endoplasmic reticulum stress. J Exp Clin Canc Res, 38(1):116
  10. QY Zhang, S Yu, SIS Lok, AST Wong, Y Jiao, LTO Lee# 2019 FAM83D promotes ovarian cancer progression and its potential application in diagnosis of invasive ovarian cancer J Cell Mol Med, 23(7): 4569-4581
  11. R Ke, X Ma, LTO Lee# 2018 Understanding the functions of kisspeptin and kisspeptin receptor (Kiss1R) from clinical case studies. Peptides, S0196-9781(18)30176-1
  12. X Ma, YF Xiong, LTO Lee# 2018 Application of Nanoparticles for Targeting G Protein-Coupled Receptors. Int J Mol Sci, 19(7), E2006
  13. S Yu, L Sun, Y Jiao, LTO Lee# 2018 The Role of G Protein-coupled Receptor Kinases in Cancer. Int J Biol Sci 14, 189-203
  14. Q Zhang, NE Madden, AST Wong, BKC Chow, LTO Lee# 2017 The role of endocrine G protein-coupled receptors in ovarian cancer progression. Front Endocrinol 8:66 doi: 10.3389/fendo.2017.00066
  15. OWH Chua, KKL Wong, BC Ko, SK Chung, BKC Chow, LTO Lee# 2016 Role of nuclear factor of activated T-cells 5 in regulating hypertonic-mediated secretin receptor expression in kidney collecting duct cells, BBA-Gene Regul Mech, 1859 (7): 922-932.
  16. JSW On, C Duan, BKC Chow, LTO Lee# 2015 Functional pairing of class B1 ligand-GPCR in cephalochordate provides evidence of the origin of PTH and PACAP/glucagon receptor family Mol Biol Evo 32(8):2048-59.
  17. JSW On, BKC Chow, LTO Lee# 2015 Evolution of parathyroid hormone receptor family and their ligands in vertebrate. Front Endocrinol 6: 1-6.
  18. LTO Lee*, SYL Ng*, JYS Chu, R Sekar, KG Harikumar, LJ Miller, BKC Chow 2014 Transmembrane peptides as unique tools to show in vivo action on water intake of a GPCR hetero-complex FASEB J 28(6): 2632-2644.
  19. JKV Tam, BKC Chow, LTO Lee# 2013 Structural and functional divergence of growth hormone-releasing hormone receptors in early sarcopterygians: lungfish and Xenopus. PLoS ONE 8(1): e53482
  20. Y Yuan, BKC Chow, VHY Lee, LTO Lee# 2012 Neuron-restrictive silencer factor functions to suppress Sp1-mediated transactivation of human secretin receptor gene. BBA-Gene Regul Mech 1829(2):231-238.
  21. SYL Ng, Billy K.C. Chow, J Kasamatsu, M Kasahara, LTO Lee# 2012 Agnathan VIP, PACAP and their receptors: ancestral origins of today’s highly diversified forms. PLoS ONE 7(9)
  22. VHY Lee, IPY Lam, HS Choi, BKC Chow, LTO Lee# 2012 The estrogen-related receptor alpha upregulates secretin expressions in response to hypertonicity and angiotensin II stimulation. PLoS ONE 7(6): e39913.
  23. VHY Lee*, LTO Lee*, Chu JYS, IPY Lam, FKY Siu, H Vaudry, BKC Chow 2010 An indispensable role of secretin in mediating the osmoregulatory functions of angiotensin II. FASEB J 24(12):5024-5032.
    Recommended by Faculty 1000 as must read paper: http://f1000.com/10505956
  24. JYS Chu, LTO Lee, CH Lai, H Vaudry, YS Chan, WH Yung, BKC Chow 2009 Secretin as a neurohypophysial factor regulating body fluid homeostasis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U.S.A. 106(37):15961-6.
    Awarded Research Output Prize by HKU
  25. VHY Lee, BKC Chow, KW Lo, LS Chow, C Man, SW Tsao, LTO Lee# 2009 Regulation of RASSF1A in nasopharyngeal cells and its response to UV irradiation. Gene 443(1-2):55-63
  26. LTO Lee, IPY Lam, BKC Chow 2008 A functional variable number of tandem repeats is located at the 5’ flanking region of the human secretin gene plays a down regulatory role in expression. J Mol Neurosci. 36(1-3):125-131.
  27. FKY Siu*, LTO Lee*, BKC Chow 2008 Southwestern blotting in investigating transcriptional regulation. Nat Protoc. 3(1): 51-58.
  28. LTO Lee, FKY Siu, JKV Tam, ITY Lau, H Vaudry, MCM Lin, AOL Wong, BKC Chow 2007 Discovery of growth hormone-releasing hormones and receptors in non-mammalian vertebrates. Proc Natl Acad Sci. U.S.A. 104(7):2133-2138.
    Communicated by Nobel laureate, R Guillemin
  29. LTO Lee, KC Tan-Un, MCM Lin, BKC Chow 2005 Retinoic acid activates human secretin gene expression by Sp-proteins and Nuclear Factor I in neuronal SH-SY5Y cells. J Neurochem 93:339-350.
  30. LTO Lee, TU Tan, RTK Pang, DTW Lam, BKC Chow 2004 Regulation of the human secretin gene is controlled by the combined effects of CpG methylation, Sp1/Sp3 ratio and the E-Box element. Mol Endocrinol 18(7):1740-1755.

* Co-first author publication;  # Corresponding author publication

Full publications list
Research Grants
External research grants
2020 Fundo para o Desenvolvimento das Ciências e da Tecnologia (FDCT), 0016/2020/A1, (PI)
Proteomic and metabolic analyses reveal the role of fatty acid metabolic reprogramming and protein myristoylation in highly metastatic ovarian cancer cells
2017 Fundo para o Desenvolvimento das Ciências e da Tecnologia (FDCT), 134/2016/A3, (PI)
Optogenetic analysis of kisspeptin receptor hetero-complexes in the hypothalamus
2016 Fundo para o Desenvolvimento das Ciências e da Tecnologia (FDCT), 101/2015/A3, (PI)
Investigation of the signaling mechanism and therapeutic potential of angiotensin II type 1 receptor in ovarian cancer
Internal research grants
2019 Multi-Year Research Grant, MYRG2019-00075-FHS, (PI),
Elucidating the role of GRK2 and GRK6 in the β-arrestin signaling in ovarian cancer and its potential clinical application
2018 Multi-Year Research Grant, MYRG2018-00161-FHS, (PI)
Using dendrimer nanotechnology to suppress ovarian cancer metastasis via manipulating angiotensin II-related signaling pathways
2016 Multi-Year Research Grant, MYRG2016-00075-FHS, (PI)
Assessment of the role of G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) heterodimerization in gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) and gonadotropin release regulation
2016 Start-up Research Grant, SRG2015-00048-FHS, (PI)
Construction of a G protein-coupled receptor – yellow fluorescence protein (GPCR-YFP) expression library to identify potential GPCR hetero-dimerization in reproductive system
Professional Activities
Journal Editor :Associate Editor: Frontiers in Endocrinology, since 2018
Guest editor of special issue: Peptides 2018
Guest Associated Editor Frontiers in Neurosciences 2018
Academic Editor: PLoS One, since 2012
Journal Reviewer :Evolution and Development; Molecular Biology and Evolution; Frontiers in Physiology; Scientific Reports; Cancer Letters; Journal of Molecular Endocrinology; PLoS One; General and Comparative Endocrinology; International Journal of Molecular Sciences; Gene; Journal of Experimental Zoology Part A; International Scholarly Research Notices; International Journal of Brain Science; Article in Drug Metabolism and Pharmacokinetics