Ho Chun Loong's Lab


Dr. Ho Chun Loong’s research focuses primarily on using synthetic biology and protein engineering to address various health and environmental issues. This includes establishing a platform where researchers could share their constructs and systematically amass these genetic constructs for protein engineering purposes.

Research Directions

Cellular engineering for the purpose of the therapeutic and environmental sustainably, through the means of protein engineering and synthetic biology. This is achieved through exogenous gene transfer to various cellular host to imbue different cellular functionalities.

Research Achievement

The research results have been published in Nature Biomedical Engineering, Journal of American Chemistry Society, and ACS Synthetic Biology. These papers has been cited more than 500 times, with 3 filed patents.



The microbiome is the collection of all microbes and their genes existing within a specific niche. The genes in the human microbiome outnumber the genes in our own genome by about 100 folds. The microbiome interacts with the host in various manners. As such, the human microbiome can be regarded as a human organ from a physiological standpoint, and its homeostasis is crucial to our health. In our lab, the intestinal and pulmonary microbiomes were investigated, focusing on kid inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and HIV/MTB (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) coinfections of the lungs. In addition, the bone microbiome was also studied although bone tissues of healthy humans remain considered sterile to date; however, the physiological structure of bones (including compact and cancellous bones) is suggestive of its susceptibility to exterior microbes, mainly through the blood. Interestingly, blood was also considered aseptic traditionally but has been acknowledged as septic recently, although the blood-borne microbes do not cause significant symptoms in healthy people.

Development of Oral delivery-based optimized therapeutic proteins for cancer and infection treatment

Developing intestinal permeable tags for efficient orally-administered therapeutic proteins, and engineering therapeutic proteins to improve stability, specificity and efficacy against cancer and infections. The study aims to increase the bioactivity of these proteins in the host body by increasing the specificity and efficacy by at least two to three orders of magnitude. This work will provide an alternative to orally-administered conventional therapeutic drugs by exerting the desired bioactivity on the target, while leaving minimal metabolic burden to the host body.

Join Us

We are recruiting various talents, please refer to the join us page for details