Animal Assisted Intervention for Hong Kong’s ‘Hikikomori’
The therapeutic value of animals to relieve stress in the young, elderly and sick has been documented by academics and medical professionals around the world. But what has not been known until relatively recently is how therapy animals can also help people who have difficulties dealing with modern society and lock themselves away in their rooms. Dr Paul Wong, Associate Professor at the Department of Social Work and Social Administration, is working with a non-profit-making social service organisation to study how therapy animals, mainly trained dogs, are helping Hong Kong’s hidden youth to regain their self-belief.
Conservation Forensics Helping to Fight Illegal Wildlife Trafficking
Illegal wildlife trafficking is the fourth most lucrative criminal trade in the world and is estimated to generate up to US$20 billion in illicit revenue a year. Millions of animals and plants are traded every year threatening the survival of many endangered species. With more species on the brink of extinction, illegal profits surging and with no sign that the trade is slowing down, HKU School of Biological Sciences has adopted conservation forensics to provide authorities investigating illegal wildlife trafficking with accurate scientific data to use against traffickers.
‘Public Health Approach to Suicide Prevention’
Led by Professor Paul Siu Fai Yip and his team members, Dr Yik Wa Law and Dr Qijin Cheng, the Hong Kong Jockey Club Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention has reduced the myth of suicide and improved awareness of mental health in the community. The quality of suicide news reporting has significantly been changed to avoid copycat effect. The team received the University’s Knowledge Exchange Excellence Award 2017 for their ‘Public Health Approach to Suicide Prevention’.
Making Our City More Walkable for All
Hong Kong is one of the busiest and most compact vertical cities in the world. Yet it is also one of the most walkable urban centres on the planet with networks of interlinked multi-level walkways connecting transportation hubs, markets, shopping malls and residential areas. However, as the ageing population grows and new infrastructure projects and high-rises are squeezed into the city’s already crowded spaces, people who use these walkways are under increasing pressure to find clear, direct routes to their destinations. The HKUrbanLab, the research and knowledge exchange arm of the Faculty of Architecture at The University of Hong Kong, is working with Civic Exchange and the Hong Kong Council of Social Service on a project called ‘Walking with Wheels’, aimed at finding the best barrier-free routes for people in wheelchairs and those with prams and trolleys.
Gerontechnology Innovations at HKU
Ageing is a well-recognised global challenge. Researchers at The University of Hong Kong are conducting cutting-edge research in gerontechnology to meet the challenges.
Next Generation Bone Implant for the Elderly
A research team in HKU Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology has developed the Fang-Kulper Anti-Migration Tip, a bone implant technology designed to help elderly patients recover more quickly and safely from broken hips, shoulders, and spinal fractures.
The Magic of Chinese Yam for Treatment of Menopausal Syndrome
A research team in HKU School of Chinese Medicine has isolated a novel bioactive protein from Chinese Yam for treating conditions resulting from low serum estrogen and progesterone levels including osteoporosis, menopausal syndrome and the accompanying cognitive function deterioration.
Prevention of Ageing-associated Neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s Disease and Glaucoma with a Wolfberry Extract
A research team in the HKU School of Biomedical Sciences has found that wolfberry not only can protect the retinal ganglion cells on the retina against glaucoma, but also can inhibit neuronal apoptosis to prevent neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s disease.