Karolinska Institutet establishes research base in Hong Kong and China after record donation

[PRESS RELEASE 2 February 2015] Karolinska Institutet is to set up its own research base in Hong Kong. This initiative is made possible by a donation of USD 50 million, equivalent to SEK 400 million, by Hong Kong-based businessman Ming Wai Lau. This is one of the largest private donations ever received by Karolinska Institutet.

The Ming Wai Lau Center for Regenerative Medicine will comprise two nodes, one in Stockholm and one in Hong Kong, and will allow scientists from Hong Kong, China, and around the world to work together in an independent research environment under the auspices of Karolinska Institutet.

The Center’s research focus will be on three major disease areas in which Karolinska Institutet and several Hong Kong universities possess unique expertise. One of its objectives is to use stem cell technology to rebuild damaged tissue, focusing, for example, on heart tissue damaged by infarction, spinal injury and finding a cure for Parkinson’s disease, and on repairing a damaged liver using stem cell transplants.

“This exceedingly generous donation from Ming Wai presents unprecedented opportunities to do groundbreaking research in these extremely important disease areas,” says Professor Anders Hamsten, vice-chancellor of Karolinska Institutet. “The new center will provide our university with a pathway to critically important knowledge and bring us closer to key partners.”

“It is with great pleasure and enthusiasm that I support world-leading research into regenerative medicine being done at Karolinska Institutet and the deepening of existing research partnerships between Karolinska Institutet and the top universities in Hong Kong and China,” says Ming Wai Lau.

About the donor
Mr. Ming Wai Lau is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Chinese Estates Holdings Ltd and Vice Chairman of the Bauhinia Foundation Research Centre. He holds a Master of Laws and a PhD from the London School of Economics and King’s College London, with his doctoral thesis being published as a book by Oxford University Press in 2011. He is also a registered attorney in the State of New York and in 2014 was a visiting lecturer at Harvard Law School, Boston, USA.

Ming Wai is active in public affairs. Among his many engagements, in Hong Kong he is a member of the Commission on Strategic Development, a member of the Commission on Poverty, and a Council member of City University of Hong Kong; and in China, he is a member of the Sichuan Committee of Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, a board member of the University of International Business and Economics, and an honorary trustee of Peking University.

For press images and further information, please contact
Anders Hamsten, Vice-Chancellor, Karolinska Institutet, via Antonia Lam at +852 9034 3750, press@ki.se
Mikael Horal, MD, Development Office, Karolinska Institutet, at + 46 70 824 20 14,
mikael.horal@ki.se

Karolinska Institutet is one of the world’s leading medical universities. Its vision is to significantly contribute to the improvement of human health. Karolinska Institutet accounts for over 40 per cent of the medical academic research conducted in Sweden and offers the country’s broadest range of education in medicine and health sciences. The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet selects the Nobel laureates in Physiology or Medicine.

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