Professor WONG Kam Bo


(Office): Rm 289, Science Centre South Block
(Lab): Rm 294, Science Centre South Block

People WKB r1 


(Office): (852) 3943 8024
(Lab): (852) 3943 8073

Fax (852) 2603 7246
Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



1997 Ph. D. University of Cambridge
1993 M. Phi. The Chinese University of Hong Kong
1990 B. Sc. The Chinese University of Hong Kong


  • Professor, School of Life Sciences
  • Assembly of Fellow, S.H. Ho College

Research Interests

  • Using structural biology (NMR, X-ray crystallography and cryo-EM) to understand the molecular mechanism of life
  • The maturation pathway of urease
  • Vacuolar sorting in plant cells
  • Protein Engineering, Design, Simulation and Modelling

Representative Publications

  1. Yap Shing Nim, Ivan Yu Hang Fong, Justin Deme, Ka Lung Tsang, Joseph Caesar, steven Johnson, Longson Tsz Hin Pang, Nicholas Man Hon Yuen, Tin Long Chris Ng, Tung Choi, Yakie Yat Hei Wong, Susan M. Lea*, Kam-Bo Wong*. (2023) Delivering a toxic metal to the active site of urease. Science Advances, 9(16):eadf7790.
  2. Lei Yang, Ka-Ming Lee, Conny Wing-Heng Yu, Hirotatsu Imai, Andrew Kwok-Ho Choi, David K Banfield, Kosuke Ito, Toshio Uchiumi, Kam-Bo Wong*. (2022) The flexible N-terminal motif of uL11 unique to eukaryotic ribosomes interacts with P-complex and facilitates protein translation. Nucleic Acids Res, 50:5335-5348.
  3. Ka Lung Tsang, Kam-Bo Wong*. (2022) Moving nickel along the hydrogenase–urease maturation pathwayMetallomics, 15(5):mfac003
  4. Hsi-En Tsao, Shu Nga Lui, Anthony Hiu-Fung Lo, Shuai Chen, Hiu Yan Wong, Chi-Kin Wong, Liwen Jiang, and Kam-Bo Wong*. (2022) Structural insights into how vacuolar sorting receptors recognize the sorting determinants of seed storage proteins. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 119:e2111281119.
  5. Shuangli Sun, Lanlan Feng, Kin Pan Chung, Ka-Ming Lee, Hayley Hei-Yin Cheung, Mengqian Luo, Kaike Ren, Kai Ching Law, Liwen Jiang, Kam-Bo Wong, Xiaohong Zhuang. (2021) Mechanistic insights into an atypical interaction between ATG8 and SH3P2 in Arabidopsis thalianaAutophagy, 18(6):1350-1366.
  6. Kwok-Ho Andrew Choi, Lei Yang, Ka-Ming Lee, Conny Wing-Heng Yu, David K Banfield, Kosuke Ito, Toshio Uchiumi, Kam-Bo Wong*. (2019) Structural and Mutagenesis Studies Evince the Role of the Extended Protuberant Domain of Ribosomal Protein uL10 in Protein TranslationBiochemistry, 58:3744-3754.
  7. Yuen MH, Fong YH, Nim YS, Lau PH, Wong KB*. (2017) Structural insights into how GTP-dependent conformational changes in a metallochaperone UreG facilitate urease maturation. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 114:E10890–E10898
  8. Cheung MY, Li X, Miao R, Fong YH, Li KP, Yung YL, Yu MH, Wong KB*, Chen Z*, Lam HM*. (2016) ATP binding by the P-loop NTPase OsYchF1 (an unconventional G protein) contributes to biotic but not abiotic stress responsesProc Natl Acad Sci USA. 113:2648-53
  9. Luo F, Fong YH, Zeng Y, Shen J, Jiang L, Wong KB*. (2014) How vacuolar sorting receptor proteins interact with their cargo proteins: crystal structures of apo and cargo-bound forms of the protease-associated domain from an Arabidopsis vacuolar sorting receptor. Plant Cell, 26:3693-708
  10. Fong YH, Wong HC, Yeun MH, Lau PH, Chen YW, Wong KB*. (2013) Structure of UreG/UreF/UreH complex reveals how urease accessory proteins facilitate maturation of Helicobacter pylori urease. PLoS Biol, 11:e1001678.
  11. Lee KM, Yusa K, Chu LO, Yu, CWH, Oono M, Miyoshi T, Ito K, Shaw PC, Wong KB*, Uchiumi T*. (2013) Solution structure of human P1•P2 heterodimer provides insights into the role of eukaryotic stalk in recruiting the ribosome-inactivating protein trichosanthin to the ribosome. Nucleic Acids Res, 41:8776-8787
  12. Chuck CP, Chen C, Ke Z, Wan DC, Chow HF, Wong KB*. (2013) Design, synthesis and crystallographic analysis of nitrile-based broad-spectrum peptidomimetic inhibitors for coronavirus 3C-like proteases. Eur J Med Chem, 59:1-6.
  13. Lee, K.M., Yu, W.H., Chiu, Y.H., Sze, K.H., Shaw, P.C., Wong, K.B*. (2012) Solution structure of the dimerization domain of the eukaryotic stalk P1/P2 complex reveals the structural organization of eukaryotic stalk complexNucleic Acids Res, 40:3172-82.
  14. Fong, Y.H., Wong, H.C., Chuck, C.P., Chen, Y.W., Sun, H., Wong, K.B.* (2011) Assembly of the preactivation complex for urease maturation in Helicobacter pylori: Crystal Structure of the UreF/UreH complexJ Biol Chem 286:43241 (Selected as paper of the week).
  15. Chan C.H., Yu, T.H., Wong, K.B.* (2011) Stabilizing salt-bridge enhances protein thermostability by reducing the heat capacity change of unfoldingPLoS One 6:e21624.
  16. Lam SY, Yeung RCY, Yu TH, Sze KH, Wong KB* (2011) A Rigidifying Salt-Bridge Favors the Activity of Thermophilic Enzyme at High Temperatures at the Expense of Low-Temperature Activity. PLoS Biol 9:e1001027
  17. Lee KM, Yu CW, Chan DS, Chiu TY, Zhu G, Sze KH, Shaw PC, Wong KB.* (2010) Solution structure of the dimerization domain of ribosomal protein P2 provides insights for the structural organization of eukaryotic stalk. Nucleic Acids Res, 38:5206-5216.
  18. Too PH, Ma MK, Mak AN, Wong YT, Tung CK, Zhu G, Au SW, Wong KB*, Shaw PC*. (2009) The C-terminal fragment of the ribosomal P protein complexed to trichosanthin reveals the interaction between the ribosome-inactivating protein and the ribosomeNucleic Acids Res, 37:602-610.
  19. Chan DS, Chu LO, Lee KM, Too PH, Ma KW, Sze KH, Zhu G, Shaw PC, Wong KB* (2007) Interaction between trichosanthin, a ribosome-inactivating protein, and the ribosomal stalk protein P2 by chemical shift perturbation and mutagenesis analyses. Nucleic Acids Res, 35:1660-1672.
  20. Lee CF, Makhatadze GI, Wong KB* (2005) Effects of charge-to-alanine substitutions on the stability of ribosomal protein L30e from Thermococcus celer. Biochemistry, 44:16817-16825.
  21. Lee CF, Allen MD, Bycroft M, Wong KB* (2005) Electrostatic interactions contribute to reduced heat capacity change of unfolding in a thermophilic ribosomal protein L30e. J Mol Biol, 348:419-431.
  22. Cheung YY, Lam SY, Chu WK, Allen MD, Bycroft M, Wong KB* (2005) Crystal structure of a hyperthermophilic archaeal acylphosphatase from Pyrococcus horikoshii–structural insights into enzymatic catalysis, thermostability, and dimerization. Biochemistry, 44:4601-4611.
  23. Wong KB*, Lee CF, Chan SH, Leung TY, Chen YW, Bycroft M (2003) Solution structure and thermal stability of ribosomal protein L30e from hyperthermophilic archaeon Thermococcus celer. Protein Sci, 12:1483-1495.
  24. Chen YW, Bycroft M, Wong KB* (2003) Crystal structure of ribosomal protein L30e from the extreme thermophile Thermococcus celer: thermal stability and RNA binding. Biochemistry, 42:2857-2865.

Research Grants

2023-2025, GRF, How the receptor-homology-transmembrane-RING-H2 protein (RMR) recognizes and sorts its specific cargo to the vacuoles?, $1,180,218

2021-2024, GRF, Structural basis of specific interactions among metallochaperones that facilitate the nickel delivery in the urease maturation pathway, $1,175,732

2019-2022, CRF, A state-of-the-art X-ray diffraction facility for structural biology research in Hong Kong, $2,306,960

2018-2020, GRF, How SH3P2 interacts with ATG8 in the autophagosome biogenesis in Arabidopsis, $1,274,389

2017-2019, GRF, How the C-terminal vacuolar sorting detainment (ctVSD) of plant storage proteins is recognised by sorting receptors, $1,124,086

2016-2018, GRF, Structure-function study of eukaryotic proteins eL12 and P0 and their roles in protein translation, $974,892

2015-2017, GRF, Structure-function studies of urease accessory protein UreG - elucidating the conformational changes that couple GTP hydrolysis to urease maturation, $634,168

2014-2016, HMRF, Structure-based discovery of inhibitors of Helicobacter pylori urease maturation, $994,522

2013-2015, GRF, How vacuolar sorting receptor (VSR) proteins recognize their cargo-proteins - structure-function study of the ligand-binding domain of Arabidopsis VSR1 protein, $1,168,250

2012-2014, GRF, Structure-function studies of Helicobacter pylori urease accessory proteins UreF and UreH - protein engineering studies and structure determination of the ternary UreG/UreF/UreH complex, $1,050,000

2010-2012, GRF, Structure-function study of P-complex in eukaryotic ribosomal stalk – structure determination of the dimerization domain of P1/P2 complex by NMR spectroscopy, $1,333,220

2010-2011, RFCID, Profiling of substrate-specificity and rational design of broad-spectrum peptidomimetic inhibitors for main proteases of coronaviruses, $799,092

2008-2011, UGC Special Equipment Grant, Acquiring a high-field NMR spectrometer for chemical and structural biology – from macromolecular structures and dynamics to biomolecular interactions, $10,000,000

2008-2009, RFCID, Substrate specificity and rational design of peptidomimetic inhibitors for SARS coronavirus main protease, $775,008

2008-2010, GRF, Does Charge-charge interaction contribute more to protein stability at high temperatures? $639,261

2007-2009, GRF, Structure-function of hydrogenase maturation factor B (HypB) – structure determination of HypB by X-ray crystallography. $654,500

2006-2009, GRF, Is the reduced catalytic efficiency of a thermophilic acylphophsphatase a necessary consequence of enhanced stability and rigidity? $1,290,183

2003-2006, GRF, Structure-function study of ribosomal protein P2 – structure determination of human P2 by NMR spectroscopy, $1,491,000

2002-2005, GRF, Structural basis of thermostability of proteins – protein engineering of a thermophilic protein from a hyperthermophilic archaea Thermococcus celer, $1,394,000

2000-2003, GRF, Structure-function of a novel RNA binding motif - structure determination of a ribosomal protein L30e from Thermococcus celer by multi-dimensional NMR spectroscopy, $1,015,200

Professional Activities

Editoral Board, The Journal of Microbiology
Editoral Board, Protein Engineering, Design and Selection