17 August 2018

Discovery Cafe - Age of Precision Oncology: Challenges and Opportunities


  • A program organized by Centre for Research Management (CRM)

Discovery Café was held on the 17th August 2018 at E6.05 (X-Space) Taylor’s Lakeside Campus. This is the first time that such an event was organised by Centre for Research Management. The main objective of Discover Café is to serve a common platform for all researchers from various schools and faculties; where one can informally present their research work, share ideas at the very frontier of research or at a preliminary stage of development, as well as get valuable insights or feedbacks from others especially from participants beyond their own school and faculty. This segment also gives an opportunity for researchers to know colleagues from other faculties. This is essential as we want to bring together researchers and experts from different disciplines to find the solutions for today's global challenges. 

Adeline Yong, Director of Centre for Research Management is very pleased with the turn out of the event and to be able to meet the researcher’s from various disciplines. “After Dr. Yeong’s sharing session, we observed researchers from other faculties inviting themselves or wanting to know how they could contributetowards her research,” she said. The Discover café was officiated by Dr. Anthony Ho, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Research and Enterprise.

In 2015, the President of the United States of America, Mr. Barack Obama announced a research initiative that aims to accelerate progress towards precision medicine. The mission is to enable a new era of medicine through research, technology and policies that empower patients, researchers and providers to work together toward development of individualized treatments. The concept of precision medicine is not new, but the prospect of applying this concept has been dramatically improved by the multidisciplinary efforts in omics studies (eg. genomics, proteomics, metabolomics), molecular imaging, functional imaging, anatomical the incidence increases as the population ages. Imaging, as well as big data analysis (computing). Cancers are the leading causes of death worldwide and the incidence increases as the population ages. It is therefore a primary target in precision medicine to show near-term impact. The branch of precision medicine that relates to cancer treatment is referred to as “precision oncology”.

During this lunch symposium were shared updates on personalized cancer treatment, with the focus on targeted therapies, theranostics (therapy + diagnostics) and radioimmunotherapy. Dr. Yeong began her symposium by explaining the 4 P’s of Medicine: Predict, Personalized, Preempt and Participation.  She explained what the research is all about, alongside the challenges and opportunities faced, and way in which they could overcome these challenges in order to ensure that the research would continue forward. Dr. Yeong ended the symposium by stating, “To go fast, go alone. To go far, go together” which signals to the audience that with research every individual is important and involved. Every participant plays an important role in moving a research forward. Every challenges and every step forward would be a stepping-stone to a clearer and more focused research development. 14 Taylor’s University Academicians, 3 GRA Students and 3 external participants from attended discovery Café UM.

Dr. Yeong Chai Hong
Strategic Research Professor at the School of Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Science