Professor NGAI Sai Ming


(Office): Rm EG05, Science Centre
(Lab): Rm EG08 & G93, Science Centre

People NSM


(Office): (852) 3943 6025
(Lab): (852) 3943 4086 & (852) 3943 6289

Fax (852) 2603 5745
Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



1994 Ph.D., University of Alberta, Canada
1986 B.Sc. (Hons) in Biochemistry, University of Waterloo, Canada


  • Associate Professor, School of Life Sciences
  • Director, The Chinese Medicinal Fungal Proteomics Laboratory, CUHK
  • Investigator, State Key Laboratory for Agrobiotechnology, CUHK

Research Interests

  • Bioinformatics and Proteomics
  • Protein/peptide structural and functional studies
  • Research and development on Modern Chinese Medicine

Representative Publications

  1. He, M., Qin, H., Poon, T.C., Sze, S.C., Ding, X., Co, N.N., Ngai, S.M., Chan, T.F., Wong, N. (2015) Hepatocellular carcinoma-derived exosomes promote motility of immortalized hepatocyte through transfer of oncogenic proteins and RNAs. Carcinogenesis 2015 Jun 7. pii: bgv081. [Epub ahead of print]
  2. Cai, Z., Xu, D., Zhang, Q, Zhang, J., Ngai, S.M., Shao, J. (2015) Classification of lung cancer using ensemble-based feature selection and machine learning methods. Mol Biosyst. 2015 Mar;11(3):791-800. doi: 10.1039/c4mb00659c. 
  3. Luo, Z., Yu, L., Yang, F., Zhao, Z., Yu, B., Lai, H., Wong, K.H., Ngai, S.M., Zheng, W., Chen, T. (2014) Ruthenium polypyridyl complexes as inducer of ROS-mediated apoptosis in cancer cells by targeting thioredoxin reductase. Metallomics. 2014 Aug;6(8):1480-90. doi: 10.1039/c4mt00044g.
  4. Lu, Y., Lam, H.M., Pi, E., Zhan, Q., Tsai, S., Wang, C., Kwan, Y.W., Ngai, S.M. (2013) Comparative Metabolomics in Glycine max and Glycine soja under Salt Stress To Reveal the Phenotypes of Their Offspring. J Agric Food Chem. 61:8711-8721.
  5. Zhan, Q., Tsai, S., Lu, Y., Wang, C., Kwan, Y.W., Ngai, S.M. (2013) RuvBL2 is involved in histone deacetylase inhibitor PCI-24781-induced cell death in SK-N-DZ neuroblastoma cells. PLoS One. 8:e71663.
  6. Liu C., Liu Z., Li M., Li X., Wong Y.S., Ngai, S.M., Zheng W., Zhang Y., Chen T.. Enhancement of auranofin-induced apoptosis in MCF-7 human breast cells by selenocystine, a synergistic inhibitor of thioredoxin reductase. PLoS One 2013: 1; e53945.
  7. Shao, J., Xu, D., Hu, L., Kwan, Y. W., Wang, Y., Kong, X., Ngai, S.M., (2012) Systematic analysis of human lysine acetylation proteins and accurate prediction of human lysine acetylation through bi-relative adapted binomial score Bayes feature representation. Mol Biosyst. 2012 Oct 2;8(11):2964-73. doi: 10.1039/c2mb25251a.
  8. Wang, C., Lu, Y. Chen, Z., Liu, X., Lin, H., Zhao, H., Chen, J., Kwan, Y.W., Ngai, S.M. (2012) Serum proteomic, peptidomic and metabolomic profiles in myasthenia gravis patients during treatment with Qiangji Jianli Fang. Chinese Medicine 2012, 28 July 2012: 7:16.
  9. Wu T., Pi E.X., Tsai S.N., Lam H.M., Sun S.M., Kwan Y.W., Ngai, S.M. (2011) GmPHD5 acts as an important regulator for crosstalk between histone H3K4 di-methylation and H3K14 acetylation in response to salinity stress in soybean. BMC Plant Biol. 2011 Dec 15;11:178. doi: 10.1186/1471-2229-11-178.
  10. Lu, Y., Chunmei Wang, C.M., Chen, Z., Zhao, H., Chen, J. b, Xiaobin Liu, X., Kwan, Y.W., Lin, H. and Ngai, S.M. (2011) Serum metabolomics for the diagnosis and classification of myasthenia gravis. Metabolomics. Doi:10.1007/s11306-011-0364-6.

Research Grants

  • 2008-2013, Focused Investments Scheme - Scheme B. Establishment of the Centre for Microbial Genomics and Proteomics (MD08703) (CoI), HKD 10,000,000.00
  • 2010-2012, CUHK Research Committee Funding (Direct Grants) (BL09527) (PI), Molecular Characterization of Cultured Cordyceps Militaris - A Comprehensive "Omics" Study. HKD 46,443.00.
  • 2010-2012, National Natural Science Foundation (NSFC) of China (BL09757) (PI), 新型硒雜環化合物通過p53信號轉導通路誘導腫瘤細胞凋亡的分子機制研究 (Project amount awarded: RMB 200,000; Budget allocated to CUHK: RMB90,000). HKD 105,750.00.
  • 2010-2012, Research Grants Council - General Research Fund (CU09674) (CoI), Functional analysis of Sox9 in neural progenitor cells of cerebellum in mice. HKD 1,039,170.00.
  • 2010-2012, Research Committee Group Research Scheme (BL09626) (CoI), Integrated Studies of Stress Tolerance Mechanisms in Wild Soybean for New Strategies in Crop Improvement. HKD 500,000.00.
  • 2010-2011, Research Grants Council - General Research Fund (CU08667) (CoI), Functional Analysis of Smad Genes in Granule Neurons of Cerebellum in Mice. HKD 1,064,049.00.
  • 2010-2011, University Grants Committee - Areas of Excellence (BL09916) (PI), (Sub-project of BL06978, PI: Prof. Samuel Sun)Molecular Mechanism behind the Concerted Histone Variants and Histone PTMs upon Salinity Stress. HKD 200,000.00.
  • 2009-2011, Research Grants Council - General Research Fund (CU08637) (CoI), The Anti-apoptotic Protein BRE - Its Functional and Molecular Roles in Human Hepatocellular Carcinoma. HKD 937,655.00.
  • 2007-2011, University Grants Committee - Areas of Excellence (BL06978) (CoI), UGC AoE Centre for Plant and Agricultural Biotechnology. HKD 25,000,000.00.
  • 2006-2010, National Basic Research Program of China – 973 (BL05408) (PI), 脾胃氣虛型重症肌無力患者血清蛋白質組學差異表達的研究 (Total project amount: RMB60,000; Budget allocated to CUHK: HK$0).
  • 2007-2013, CUHK RAC/ CUHK Strategic Investment - Major Area. Institute of Plant Molecular Biology and Agricultural Biotechnology (IPMBAB) (CoI) HK $22,800,000
  • 2008-2010, Focused Investments Scheme - Scheme D (One-off Support) (BL08991) (CoI), Hong Kong Bioinformatics Centre. HKD 1,508,000.00.
  • 2007-2009, CUHK Research Committee Funding (Direct Grants) (BL06989) (PI), Synthetic Peptide and Mass Spectrometry Approaches on Studying the Substrate Specificity of Histone Methylation : Post-translational Modification Controls at the Histone N-termini. HKD 39,000.00
  • 2007-2009, CUHK Research Committee Funding (Direct Grants) (BL07752) (PI), Proteomics and Synthetic Peptide Approaches on Studying the Histone Post-translational Modifications (PTMs) in the Brain of the Senescence-accelerated Mouse: A Model for Studying Aging and the Early Phase of Alzheimer's Disease. HKD 38,678.00.
  • 2006-2008, Research Grants Council (Earmarked Grants) (CU05563) (CoI), Proteomic Approach for Specific Identiciation of SUMO Proteases Substrates. HKD 718,957.00.
  • 2006-2008, Research Grants Council (Earmarked Grants) (CU05487) (CoI), Identification of T-cell Epitopes in Oncogenic Human Papillomavirus to Provide a Foundation for Developing Peptide-based Prophylactic and Therapeutic Vaccines against Cervical Cancer. HKD 706,957.00.


  • Synthetic peptide based vaccine development on Coronaviral proteome: Viral protein/peptide structural and function studies (US provisional patent# 60/487,396; filing date is 14th July, 2003)


Professorship: Part-time Professor (Peking University, Shenzhen Graduate School, China) 2004-2006