Kathryn S.E. Cheah, PhD, is Chair of Biochemistry since 1997 and Head of Department from 1997 to 2009. She was the Director for the LKS Faculty of Medicine Centre for Reproduction, Development and Growth from 2004 to 2009. Her university education was obtained in the UK, at University of London, and the University of Cambridge, where she was also a Brooks Scholar. She was a postdoctoral fellow in the University of Manchester and a Research Fellow at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund in London before joining the University of Hong Kong in 1983. Kathy Cheah has been an Honorary Professor, Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, China since 1997. In 2000 she was awarded the University of Hong Kong's Outstanding Researcher Award and also the Croucher Foundation Senior Fellowship. She is the founding President of Hong Kong Society for Developmental Biology and was the President of the International Society for Matrix Biology 2006-2008.
Her research focuses on understanding gene regulation and function and how mutations cause disease, with an emphasis on the skeletal system and the inner ear. She has contributed insights into the regulation and function of genes in vivo and the molecular pathogenesis of disease by generating transgenic mice and mouse models and by studying human degenerative skeletal disorders especially degenerative intervertebral disk disease. She actively promotes public understanding of science in the region..
Mechanistic insights into chondrodysplasia caused by ER stress revealed by genetic and transcriptome analyses