Early Diagnosis of Cancer:

Our research focuses on “Nanotechnology -integrated lateral flow assays” for the detection of a trace amount of cancer biomarker proteins in human blood samples. This technology has the potential application in clinical analysis, and early diagnosis and prediction of cancer risks.

Treatment of Cancer:

In the treatment of cancer, an innovative methodology integrating Autologous NK Cells alongside T cells is being harnessed, promising transformative outcomes in the battle against this formidable disease

Early Cancer detection kit

Cancer is one of the deadliest diseases, and in most cases, it is detected at a later stage of its progression. Therefore, an early detection of cancer is mandatory that can save millions of lives worldwide. A simple and sensitive method is required to determine a trace level of target protein biomarker in human blood or serum.

We seek cost effective and reliable nanotechnology-based platforms (plasmonic, or fluorescence-based assays) that can-do early detection with a turnaround time of less than 1 hour.

Based on our expertise in nanotechnology, and cancer cell targeting nanoparticles, “Nanosensors-integrated lateral flow assays” are being developed for the detection of low-level cancer biomarker in serum. We believe our approach has a potential application in clinical analysis and diagnosis.

Therapeutic Approaches to Treatment of Cancer

Although several treatment options are available, the most existing treatment methods involve mainly chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy. These treatments are painful as they cause side effects and recurrence of cancer in most cases. Immunotherapy has been emerging as an alternate treatment option in recent years. In our immune system, the most common immune cells are T cells, B cells and natural killer (NK) cells.

When the first and second lines of chemotherapy and radiation therapy are proven unsuccessful, NK cells can be used as an alternative treatment option or a combination therapy for cancer treatment. This NK cell technology could be extended to patients with early stage or advanced stages of cancer with recurrence or failed treatment options.

Our ongoing research focuses on “Novel NK Cell -Based Cell Therapy for Solid Cancers”.

What are Natural Killer NK Cells

NK Cells are a part of our body’s immune system. They can fight against infections and cancers.

NK cells were identified over four decades ago as lymphocytes with innate ability to lyse tumour cells without the need for prior sensitization. NK cells can trigger target cell death by releasing cytotoxic granules containing granzymes and perforin through receptor-mediated pathways. NK cells also play immunomodulatory functions by secreting chemokines and cytokines.

Our research focuses on improving the current NK cell technology for the betterment of cancer therapy for solid cancers. Our study evaluates the cultured NK cells as a monotherapy or a combination therapy for patients with advanced liver cancer, colorectal cancer, lung cancer, and breast cancer.

*Representative Publications for  Mr. Wijenthiran Kunasekaran

1. Lau MN, Kunasekaran W, On YY, Tan LJ, Zaharin NA, H. A. Ghani S, et al. (2022) A comparison study of dental pulp stem cells derived from healthy and orthodontically intruded human permanent teeth for mesenchymal stem cell characterisation. PLoS ONE 17(12): e0279129.

2. Ramarao KDR, Somasundram C, Razali Z, Kunasekaran W, Jin TL, Musa S, et al. (2022) Antiproliferative effects of dried Moringa oleifera leaf extract on human Wharton’s Jelly mesenchymal stem cells. PLoS ONE 17(10): e0274814.

3. Razali, Zuliana, Chandran Somasundram, Siti Zalifah Nurulain, Wijenthiran Kunasekaran, and Matthew Raj Alias. 2021. “Postharvest Quality of Cherry Tomatoes Coated with Mucilage from Dragon Fruit and Irradiated with UV-C” Polymers 13, no. 17: 2919.

4. Yazid, F.B., Gnanasegaran, N., Kunasekaran, W. et al. Comparison of immunodulatory properties of dental pulp stem cells derived from healthy and inflamed teeth. Clin Oral Invest 18, 2103–2112 (2014).

5. Kunasekaran, W., Boyce, A. N., & Somasundram, C. (2011). Cloning and characterisation of ACC oxidase gene from MAS (AA) banana. Malaysian Journal of Science, 30(1), 45–50.

6. Jayaraman, P., Govindasamy, V., Gnanasegaran, N., Kunasekaran, W., Vasanthan, P., Musa, S., & Kasim, N. H. (2015). Expression patterns of immune genes in long-term cultured dental stem cells. Clinical Oral Investigations, 20(1), 109–116.

*Patents filed by Mr. Wijenthiran Kunasekaran

1. Isolation, expansion and characterization of Wharton’s Jelly Mesenchymal stem cells (10542743)

*Representative Publications for Dr. Susan Khin

1. Peginterferon for Chronic Hepatitis B on Nucs (SWAP RCT): Safety trumps Efficacy in Add-on versus Switch Peginterferon Therapy, a Multicentre Randomised Control Trial. Seng Gee Lim, Wei Lyn Yang, Jing Hieng Ngu, Jason Chang, Jessica Tan, Taufique Ahmed, Yock Young Dan, Kieron Lim, Yin Mei Lee, Guan Huei Lee, Poh Seng Tan, Khin Lay Wai, Wah Wah Phyo, Htet Htet Toe Wai Khine, Chris Lee, Amy Tay. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, 2021. 2021 Apr 22;S1542-3565(21)00465-1. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2021.04.031. (In Press)

2. Safdar F, Eng CLJ, Wai KL, Tey WS, Ang SB. Prevalence of female sexual dysfunction in allied health workers: a cross-sectional pilot study in a tertiary hospital in Singapore. BMC Womens Health. 2019 Nov 14;19(1):137. doi: 10.1186/s12905-019-0829-8.

3. Mei Chien Chua, Tony Tan, Wee Meng Han, Mary Foong Fong Chong, Seng Bin Ang, Victor Samuel Rajadurai, Lay Kok Tan, Lay Wai Khin, Claudi Chi, Juin Lee & Kok Hian Tan; Perinatal Society of Singapore. Perinatal Society of Singapore Advocacy Group for Engagement on Optimal Perinatal Nutrition with the support of Integrated Platform for Research in Advancing Metabolic Health Outcomes of Women and Children (IPRAMHO). Guidelines on Optimal Perinatal Nutrition. 2019. Singapore Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (SJOG) 2019. Vol(50): (1): 10 – 12. Perinatal Society of Singapore: (

4. Pregnancy and Birth Cohorts for Biomarkers, Metabolic and Pregnancy Outcomes Evaluation: A summary of Pre-conception, Prenatal and Postnatal Cohorts in KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital. Tan KH, Li JL, Jack MJ, Wai KL, Chern SMB. 2019. Singapore Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (SJOG) 2018. Vol: 49 – (2): 26 – 30.

5. Inthrani R. Indran, Zhongwei Huang, Lay Wai Khin, Jerry K.Y. Chan, Veronique Viardot-Foucault, Eu Leong Yong. Simplified 4 – item criteria for polycystic ovary syndrome: A bridge too far? Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2018. 89(2), 202 211.doi:10.1111/cen.13755. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID: 29851127.

6. Susan JS Logan, Wai Khin Lay, Win Pa Pa Thu, Luna Y Wang, Jane A. Cauley, Eu-Leong Yong. Chronic joint pain and hand grip strength correlates with osteoporosis in midlife women: A Singaporean cohort. Osteoporos Int. 2017 Jun 24. doi: 10.1007/s00198-017- 4095-z. [Epub ahead of print]

7. Carolina Un Lam, Khin Lay Wai, Ashish Chetan Kalhan, Robert Yee, Yung Seng Lee, Mary Foong-Fong Chong, Kenneth Kwek, Seang Mei Saw, Keith Godfrey, Yap Seng Chong, Chin-Ying Hsu. J. Identification of Caries Risk Determinants in Toddlers: Results of the GUSTO birth cohort study. Caries Res. 2017. 25;51(4):271-282. doi:10.1159/000471811. [Epub ahead of print].

8. Wah W, Wai KL, Pek PP, Ho AF, Alsakaf O, Chia MY, Noor JM, Kajino K, De Souza NN, Ong ME; PAROS Investigators. Conversion to shockable rhythms during resuscitation and survival for out-of hospital cardiac arrest. Am J Emerg Med. 2016. (25): S0735-6757 [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 2781025.

9. Ryan Wai Kheong Lee, Lay Wai Khin, Marianne Sybille Hendricks, Heng Hao Tan, Sadhana Nadarajah, Nancy Wen Sim Tee, Seong-Feei Loh, Bee Choo Tai, Jerry KY Chan. Ovarian biomarkers predict controlled ovarian stimulation for in vitro fertilisation treatment in Singapore. Singapore Med J. 2020 Sep; 61(9): 463–468. doi: 10.11622/smedj.2020130ÐMCID: PMC7927167.

10. Wang T, Srivastava S, Hartman M, Buhari SA, Chan CW, Iau P, Khin LW, Wong A, Tan SH, Goh BC, Lee SC. High expression of intratumoral stromal proteins is associated with chemotherapy resistance in breast cancer. Onco target. 2016. 23;7(34):55155-55168. PMID: 27487140.