Visualising Medicine 形影相醫

Visualising Medicine is where this exhibition begins.

It is a dazzling showcase of artistic renderings inspired by medical images that are both eye-catching, but also closely intertwined with the health and wellbeing of us all.

This zone is inspired by images of cells and diseases through the lens of microscopy, all of which stem from novel discoveries by research teams at HKUMed.




Vivid (1)

Identifying the origin of cancer stem cells (CSC) in primary liver cancer, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) 

As the fifth most common cancer worldwide, existing therapies against HCC are limited by the advanced stage at which the disease is often diagnosed. The limited efficacy of liver resection and transplantation also result in a high mortality rate.  

With growing evidence of how a small population of CSC can maintain tumour formation and growth, HKUMed researchers from the Department of Clinical Oncology set out to identify the CSC population that drive and maintain HCC growth and metastasis.  

The study found a population of CSCs expressing a CD133 surface phenotype from human liver cell lines. CD133+ cells possess a greater colony-forming efficiency, higher proliferative output, and a greater ability to form a tumour in living organisms.  

Findings also showed that CD133+ cells exhibit an increased potential for self-renewal and a marked ability to differentiate and spread to different parts of the body.  

The study provided new insights into the more efficient elimination of a crucial population of cancer cells and the potential to develop more effective cancer therapies. 

Vivid (2)

Association between IVIM parameters and treatment response in locally advanced squamous cell cervical cancer treated by chemoradiotherapy 

Studies have shown that cervical cancer tumours with better blood supply respond better to chemoradiotherapy.  

Researchers from HKUMed’s Department of Diagnostic Radiology set out to see if intravoxel incoherent motion (IVIM), an MRI technique increasingly used in oncology, could be used to evaluate tumour microcirculation in cervical cancer and its impact on treatment response.  

IVIM is attractive as it can assess both tumour tissue cellularity – the proportion of tumour cells to normal cells – and microcirculation in the tumour in one scan. The technique is non-invasive and removes the need to use injected contrast agents, which are not suitable for all patients.  

The research found tumours that were found to have higher blood flow through IVIM responded better to chemoradiotherapy.  

While there are currently limited treatment options for the cancer, there is potential to use these discoveries to recruit patients with tumours with lower blood circulation to clinical trials. 

Vivid (3)

Whole-genome sequencing and comprehensive molecular profiling identify new driver mutations in gastric cancer 

A team from HKUMed’s Department of Pathology led the discovery of mutated genes that cause gastric cancer, the fourth most common cause of global cancer deaths in 2020. 

As the first to publish the world’s largest and most comprehensive genomic profiling of 100 gastric cancer patients, the research team uncovered the different complex ways that DNA in cancer cells is damaged, including chromosomal breakage, mutation, and methylation changes. 

Adopting next-generation sequencing technology, they identified hundreds of gastric cancer driver genes deregulated by the different types of DNA damage. The analysis also showed the various subtypes, each with unique patterns that can affect specific cancer driver genes, leading to differential sensitivity to different targeted drugs. 

Such findings open avenues to develop genome-guided personalised therapy and provide targets to develop new anti-cancer drugs. The study also identified how environmental factors could damage DNA and increase the risk of stomach cancer, highlighting potential preventative strategies. 

Vivid (4)

Long-Term Prognosis of Patients With Coronary Microvascular Disease Using Stress Perfusion Cardiac Magnetic Resonance 

A team from HKUMed’s Department of Diagnostic Radiology set out to answer why some patients report chest pain despite tests by their doctors showing no significant narrowing of their coronary arteries. 

The team’s work drew on their database of cardiac MRI cases from three hospitals in Hong Kong, inviting those patients for stress cardiac MRI scans, which use drugs to mimic the effects of exercise on the heart, to identify microscopic coronary artery disease. 

Cardiac MRI can help identify microvascular dysfunction, or abnormal blood flow in the small vessels in the heart, by measuring blood flow to identify cases of reduced overall flow. Measuring the blood flow entering the heart can be correlated with bad outcomes such as heart attack and death. 

By measuring myocardial perfusion, or how well blood flows through the heart muscle, the research contributed to a growing body of evidence that coronary microvascular dysfunction is one of the causes of unexplained chest pain.  

Following this research, HKUMed has now partnered with an international group of 16 centres to develop a fully automated method for quantifying myocardial blood flow. Analysis of images that previously took 30 minutes can now be completed in less than a minute. 

Commissioned Artist 委約藝術家

Victor Wong 黃宏達

Victor Wong is a Hong Kong inventor-artist who specialises in multimedia art and technology.

After he graduated from the University of Washington in 1989 with a degree in the Bachelor of Science of Electrical Engineering, Victor has been pioneering the digital creative media industry in Hong Kong for 30 years. His physics and electrical engineering background led to his innovative approach to ancient Chinese ink traditions with the invention of A.I. Gemini, the world’s first artificial intelligence ink artist, and together they have produced A.I. ink painting series such as ‘Escapism’ and the Samsung-commissioned ‘The Fauvist Dreams of Gemini’, reassembling Gemini’s consciousness and dreamscape through different algorithms. His work, the epitome of the endless possibilities of how technology can offer creativity and expression, has been featured in many cities internationally, from London, Hong Kong, Shanghai, to Nanjing, was acquired by renowned international collectors such as Mr. Uli Sigg and Mr. Merlin Swire, Chairman of Swire Pacific Group.


黃宏達自1989年於美國華盛頓大學電子工程系畢業後,一直為香港數碼創意跨媒體的創意先驅。其物理學與電子工程學的專業背景,啟發他利用創新的手法演繹傳統中式水墨藝術,並於2018年發明了史上首位人工智能水墨藝術家 A.I. Gemini,共同創作了獲得高度評價的《逸》以及受三星委託創作的《雙子座03的野獸派之夢》(2020) 等水墨作品系列,以演算法把人工智能的意識和夢境完美呈現出來。他的作品曾在倫敦、香港、上海、南京等城市展出,獲多個國際知名收藏家收藏,包括來自瑞士的烏利‧希克博士以及香港太古集團前主席施銘倫(Merlin Swire)先生。