Two teams of our students were awarded merit prizes in Hong Kong Youth Science & Technology Innovation Competition 2012-2013


Team 1

Ho Poon Kiu (3V), Chow Pak Chun (3M) and Ma Ho Him (3M)

Team 2

Law Chak Yan (1N), Lau Ka Yi (1N) and Chow Hui Yau (1N)

Prize Giving Ceremony was held on April 7, 2013 (Sun).


Students were preparing their posters for presentation on April 6, 2013 (Sat).

Research topics:

Gentiana scabra, a type of Chinese Medicine, cannot protect SH-SY5Y cells from oxidative stress by Ho Poon Kiu (3V), Chow Pak Chun (3M) and Ma Ho Him (3M)

Abstract: Neuronal death is found in neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. It is believed that oxidative stress may play a role in the neurodegeneration. Gentiana scabra is a type of traditional Chinese medicine which is commonly used to treat hepatitis, stomatitis and inflammatory diseases. Recently, it is found that Gentiana scabra has effects on the central nervous system. The present study is to investigate whether Gentiana scabra can protect neuronal cells against oxidative stress. The model of neurodegenerative diseases was made by culturing neuroblastoma cells (SH-SY5Y) which were treated with hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) at 500μM or 750μM in DMEM culture medium supplemented with 10% fetal bovine serum. Neuroprotection of Gentiana scabra against H2O2 was measured by cellular release of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). Our results showed that pretreatment of Gentiana scabra at concentrations of 0, 0.01, 0.1, 1, 10 and 100 μg/ml cannot protect SH-SY5Y cells against H2O2-induced toxicity. This indicates that Gentiana scabra may not help neurons against oxidative stress in neurodegenerative diseases.

(This is a collaborative project with Dr. Raymond Chuen-Chung Chang, Laboratory of Neurodegenerative Diseases, Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong.)

Novel bio-detergent by Law Chak Yan (1N), Lau Ka Yi (1N) and Chow Hui Yau (1N)

Abstract: This project focuses on the inhibiting effect of plant extracts on the growth of bacteria. We used the solid plate method as well as the diffusion disc method to evaluate the effectiveness of these plant extracts. The bacteria sample was collected from the toilet of our school to mimic human living environment. Different from the common sayings, most of our tested plant samples showed no significant effect on inhibiting the growth of bacteria except garlic and lemon which showed observable inhibiting effect on the growth of bacteria. This suggests the possibility to develop novel bio-detergent in the future.

Students were doing their experiment in our biotechnology laboratory. They were adding serially diluted Traditional Chinese Medicine to cells in culture.