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Health Future Challenge



Health Future Challenge is a start-up ideation competition for students, researchers, alumni and industrialists to team up and come up with health-tech ideas and business model for the future. The competition aims to:

  • source impactful innovations for the future
  • catalyse inter-disciplinary team formation and business and technology integration through the entrepreneurship competition process
  • advancing PolyU domain expertise through translational research and start-ups



Faculty of Health and Social SciencesDepartment of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology



Join a PolyU Project Team or come with your innovative idea to win!




Health-tech is the application of organised knowledge and skills in the form of devices, medicines, vaccines, procedures and systems developed to solve a health problem and improve quality of life. 



For Students

Gain initial entrepreneurship experience and win prizes for innovative efforts


For Researchers

Enrich the team composition with like-minded individuals from different disciplines and compete for Translational Research Grant of max. HK$500,000* with follow-up supports

*applicable to winning health research project(s) under PolyU FHSS (for the HK$500,000) or ABCT (for the HK$200,000)


For Alumni

Form multi-disciplinary team and gain valuable pitching experience with feedback from seasoned judges


For Industrialists

Co-innovate new health-tech solution harnessing PolyU domain expertise




1st runner up


2nd runner up
  • Cash prize HK$1,000 to multi-disciplinary team(s) consisting of PolyU researchers and students/ alumni from other disciplines

  • E-certificate of Award


  • E-certificate of Participation to all participants
  • Opportunities for Translational Research Grant of max. HK$500,000 with follow-up supports     
    • applicable to winning health research project(s) under PolyU FHSS (for the HK$500,000) or ABCT(for the HK$200,000)

Individuals or teams with interest in health-tech-related business ideas to form multi-disciplinary teams* during Ideation Gala

*consisting of one PolyU/ HKCC/ SPEED current student (both undergraduates and postgraduates) or researcher as Person-in-charge
(team size: max. 5)


How? | Application closed

Fill in online application form individually. 




Day 1

Date: 15 Jul 2022 (Fri)
Time: 6 - 9PM

Venue: V322, PolyU



6:00PM  - 6:15PM


6:15PM - 6:30PM





Opening Remark

Kelvin Wong, Interim Director of Knowledge Transfer and Entrepreneurship

Prof. David Shum, Dean of Faculty of Health and Social Sciences

Prof. Larry Chow, Head of Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology


6:30PM - 7:00PM



Guest Speaker Sharing

Dr Cyrus Chan, Associate of Qiming Venture Partners


7:00PM - 7:20PM

Introduction of the Challenge and Research Projects

7:20PM - 7:40PM

Ice Breaking & Open Mic

7:40PM - 9:00PM



Day 2

Date: 16 Jul 2022 (Sat)
Time: 10:30AM - 6PM

Venue: V322, PolyU




10:30AM - 10:45AM


10:45AM - 12:15PM



Training – Business Model/ Case Sharing

Michael Tsui, CEO, Deltason Medical Ltd.


12:15PM - 2:00PM


2:00PM - 3:00PM



Training – Pitching Skill

Freddy Law, Co-founder & CEO of Storius Limited


3:00PM - 3:05PM

Introduction of Industrial Centre

3:05PM - 6:00PM












Work-it-out | Mentoring Session



• Ir Dr CC Cheung, Senior Engineering Manager (Additive Manufacturing Stream, Digital Manufacturing Stream), Industrial Centre, PolyU

• Dr David Li, Director, Great Bonus Development Limited

• KY Tan, Director Business Development, Asia Pacific Brainlab
• Dr Kevin Chu, General Manager, Nin Jiom Health Products Limited

• Ir Dr Kevin Wong, Senior Engineering Manager (Building Services, Construction & Safety Stream), Industrial Centre, PolyU

• Louis Sze, Co-founder and CEO, Syngular Technology

• Raymond Chow, Director Marketing & Strategy Asia, Merit Medical Asia Co. Ltd


Briefing Session | Networking

24 Jun 2022 (Fri) | 5:30 – 7PM

Venue: N002, PolyU

Application Deadline

 8 Jul 2022 (Fri) 1 PM

Ideation Gala | Team Formation | Workshop

15-16 Jul 2022 (Fri-Sat)
Day 1: 6 - 9PM
Day 2: 10:30AM - 6PM


Venue: V322, PolyU

Team & Project Submission
1PM, 21 July 2022 (Thu)
Announcement of Shortlisted Projects
Late July
Pitching Early August 


  • 20% Innovation and Industry Disruption 
  • 20% Relevancy and Uniqueness  
  • 20% Team Background and Strength
  • 20% Impact on Society and Solution Effectiveness  
  • 20% Feasibility and Commercial Viability  



Join a PolyU Project Team

or come with your innovative idea to win


Fitness on YouTube


With social distancing and lockdown in place, healthcare practitioners are facing challenges to engage people in physical activities and healthy lifestyles in isolation. Trending fitness YouTubers, who produce and disseminate videos of at-home workouts and wellbeing tips, have come to play an important new role in public health. Not only have they offered handy knowledge of indoor exercises and self-help techniques among others, but they have also kept people motivated through COVID-19. Who are the top fitness YouTubers that have thrived in Hong Kong, where tough pandemic restrictions have been imposed? What digital resources have they mobilized to turn their channels viral and make their follower-members committed to the ‘lonely’ fitness trainings and healthy lifestyle routines from afar?


With the case of fitness YouTubers, this research aims at exploring and developing effective strategies of health communication in response to the pandemic, thus offering a timely account of how health-related practices and knowledge can be packaged and transacted in digital environments. Conducting an analysis of the trending YouTubers and their channels, it maps various modes of content creation and audience engagement, and highlights factors and processes enabling or disenabling them. On the one hand, this research seeks to modularize best practices of mediated health communication and community building for both practitioners and policymakers, and informs business model innovation for healthcare industries and content creators to boost their (self-)enterprises amidst public health crises. On the other hand, it opens collaboration opportunities and facilitates public-private cooperation by identifying promising influencers and suitable communicative patterns for relevant businesses and public health projects, respectively.


Principal Investigator: Dr TING Tin-yuet (Department of Applied Social Sciences)


Use of Live Streaming Immersive Technology to Promote Community Connectedness in Long Term Care Residents


Many long term care residents with deteriorating physical mobility are confined to the care facilities due to physical and contextual constraints. They are at elevated risk for depression because of the limited exposure to the outside world. Maintaining connectedness with the community has been shown to promote resident physical and mental health. This proposed study aims to bring the residents to virtually visit Hong Kong using the Live Streaming Immersive Technology developed by PolyU IC to keep their connectedness with the community without physically leaving the facilities. This technology is an integrated application involving a 5G mobile communication network, an ultra-high resolution 360-degree camera, and a large scale 6-sided CAVE system.


Principal Investigator: Prof. Elsie YAN (Department of Applied Social Sciences)



A phylogeographic surveillance platform to monitor COVID-19 transmission in the community


Our team established a revised “PCR tiling" protocol coupled with Nanopore sequencing technology, which can characterize the entire SARS-CoV-2 genome and identified mutations within 8 hours (vs 3-4 days using convention method). Because of the rapid sequencing technique, Dr. SIU’s lab is always the first to identify the new SARS-CoV-2 variants introduced into the community.

For better monitoring the viral transmission in our community, we established a phylogeographic database of COVID-19 in Hong Kong. The database integrates the disciplines of genetic epidemiology and geographic information system to illustrate the spatial distribution of different SARS-CoV-2 variants in the city. In the database, the residences of the confirmed cases are represented by colour dots in the interactive map. Cases with the same viral genomes belong to the same transmission event and are labelled with the same colour dots. Animation is used to display the colour dots in order according to the date of diagnosis, and then lines will appear to connect the dots to simulate the transmission path of the virus strain in the community. This database has been providing timely scientific support for the Government’s anti-pandemic measures.


> watch video <


Photo 3112019 1 02 33 PM

 Fig.1. The project outline of construction of phylogeographic database of COVID-19 in Hong Kong


HTIHealth Future ChallengeResearch Team Application Form Prof Cai Jing

Fig.2. Our database revealing the co-circulation of four SARS-CoV-2 variants during the early stage of the 5th wave of community outbreak in Feb 2022. The information helped the Government to suppress the transmissions originated from aircrews and identified the source of the outbreak in Kwai Chung Estate.


Principal Investigator: Dr Gilman SIU (Department of Health Technology and Informatics)


New orally administrable peptide for treatment of diabetes


Despite the successful development of insulin related therapies for the treatment of diabetes, there is still an unmet need to better treat hyperglycaemia and hyperlipidaemia. To expand the toolbox of effective medications needed for providing better glycaemic control and at reduce complications for individual characteristics of our diabetes patients is a continuous effort in pharmaceutical industry, our team focuses on exploring novel antidiabetic peptides for more effective treatments. By our state-of-the-art platforms, orally administrable antidiabetic peptide can be used for treatment of both type 1 and 2 diabetes was identified. Further investigation on the translation potential of this peptide will be performed in this project. 


Principal Investigator: Dr Wong Chi Ming (Department of Health Technology and Informatics)


Effect of markerless motion capture (MMC) system for measurement of range of motion (ROM) in patients with disability


Motion Capture Green Ball on Joint 2

This project develops and utilize the use of markerless motion capture (MMC) system in Leap 

Motion Controller (LMC) and mobile device, such as iPad Pro and iPhone for motion tracking and analysis. We implemented programs in the MMC systems, LMC and iPad Pro, and investigate its effect in measurement of range of motion (ROM) in patients to detect for and identify the movement limitation in them.


The use of MMC system for ROM measurement acts as an alternative tool to the traditional use of goniometer. MMC system in mobile or portable devices enables the measurement ROM in the home setting in which the patients can perform the daily tasks in a natural way while therapists can monitor the recovery progress of the patients remotely and comprehensively.

RS_Health Future Challenge_Research Team Application Form_Winnie














Principal Investigator: Prof. Kenneth FONG (Department of Rehabilitation Sciences)


Knowledge transfer of the evidence-based recommendations for the management of musculoskeletal disorders to local therapists and patients


Our research team develop evidence-based clinical practice guidelines for the management of some of the most prevalent and disabling musculoskeletal conditions, namely low back pain, neck pain, hip and knee osteoarthritis. Our current project aims to transfer the recommended care resulting from these clinical practice guidelines to local stakeholders such as therapists and patients. We are planning to develop a mobile phone-based app to transfer the recommended care to stakeholders and track their performance over time until they fully recover.


Principal Investigator: Dr Fadi AL ZOUBI (Department of Rehabilitation Sciences)


Machine learning in analyzing visual signalling coding in the myopic retina 


Visually guided ocular growth theory is believed to correlate 

SO_Health Future Challenge_Research Team Application Form_Dr PAN Feng

with myopia development. Our Team believed that various focus/defocused images could be used to modulate the signalling between retina-scleral and therefore prevent axial length elongation. Thus, we first applied poisson generalized linear models (GLMs) model to determine how alpha retinal ganglion cells(α RGCs) can sense the nuance of various images with respect to their biophysical properties. Then the second step is how these spike properties affect the retinal signalling to the scleral. Our research aims to explore the application of designated visual stimuli in the form of glasses to regulate the change of axial length.


Principal Investigator: Dr PAN Feng (School of Optometry)


Deciphering refractive error by utilizing smartphone AI photorefraction technology

SO_Health Future Challenge_Research Team Application Form_Miss KIU Ling Yau

In the post-pandemic digital era, healthcare must evolve to reach those in need yet with scarce resources. Nowadays, smartphones have reached a global penetration even rising in less developed countries. Our recent efforts aimed to explore the use of smartphone photorefraction in identifying amblyogenic risk factors, and determination of myopic (short-sightedness) and astigmatic refractive errors. By adopting artificial intelligence (AI) technology that uses machine learning, our goal is to develop a new avenue in smartphone application for a fast and accurate automated determination of refractive errors so that timely diagnosis and treatment can be implemented.


Principal Investigator: Miss KIU Ling Yau (School of Optometry)


Development of an ultra-fast "light up" biosensor tool to achieve high-throughput screening in drug discovery against superbug New Delhi Metallo-beta-lactamase-1 (NDM-1)

Health Future ChallengeABCT Research Team Application Form Prof Leung YunChung v1


The New Delhi Metallo-β-lactamase 1 (NDM-1) has raised lots of awareness since the past 1years. It is a Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriacease, which can hydrolyse most of the β-lactam antibiotics, rendering it to be a superbug. Because of the shortage of an effective in vitro drug screening assay, there is still no clinically useful inhibitor against NDM-1.  We have developed a fluorescent labelled NDM-1 biosensor for the detection of potential NDM-1 inhibitors. Results showed that the NDM-1 biosensor can generate turn-on fluorescent signal after binding to L-captopril and thanatin (positive controls). Our next step will immobilize the NDM-1 biosensor in 96-well plate to develop a high-throughput screening tool for the drug discovery. Product performance and stability tests will be conducted before product commercialization.


Principal Investigators: Prof. LEUNG Yun-chung, Prof. WONG Kwok-yin (Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology)


Digital Platform for Personalized Dietary Coaching of Hong Kong Older Adults


The declining food intakes in older age may lead to nutrient deficiency without noticing, and elevates the risk of multiple chronic diseases. When disease burden increases with aging population in Hong Kong, it is especially important for older adults to self-monitor their diet. In the proposed project, we plan to develop a smartphone-based digital platform to assess dietary intake of older adults using photos and audio messages. More importantly, the platform will evaluate the healthy and unhealthy foods, and will generate personalized advice in modifying dietary choice and food preparation method. With the use of smart technology, older adults can self-evaluate their diet and prevent diseases due to nutritional inadequacy.


Principal Investigators: Dr Kenneth LO (Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology)


Photocontrolled Skin Drug Delivery


Our research team has working on the area of photocontrolled supramolecular soft materials over last 5 years. We plan to expand the research scope to translational research in applications of our recently developed supramolecular soft robotic systems (awarded Croucher Innovation Award) into the next generation visible-light controlled drug delivery systems.
With our recent collaboration research experience and knowledge in the CEVR project, we would extend the potential applications of the eye-drug delivery systems to skin-drug. Though the project is still in its infant state, with our track-record, we can foresee the applicational importance for biomedical materials for skin drug deliveries.


Principal Investigators: Dr Franco LEUNG King-chi (Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology)


Health products from mycelial fermentation of a medicinal fungus Cs-HK1


This project aims to develop novel functional food and therapeutic products from mycelial fermentation of Cs-HK1 fungus originated from Cordyceps sinensis (冬蟲夏草), an exotic and precious medicinal fungus in TCM. The fungal mycelium (FM) and exopolysaccharide (EPS) produced by Cs-HK1 mycelial fermentation have proven and notable health and therapeutic effects including anti-tumor, anti-oxidant, anti-fatigue, anti-inflammation and anti-hypertension. With these desirable effects, the project will make functional foods, dietary supplements and/or therapeutic adjuvants of Cs-HK1 FM and EPS in the forms of capsule, tablet, syrup and injectable liquid.


ABCT_WU Jianyong

Principal Investigators: Prof. WU Jian-yong (Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology)


Novel Influenza Diagnostic Assays Development


Given the continuous public health threat caused by influenza viruses, World Health Organization(WHO) urges global surveillance as a key strategy to address this problem. Rapid diagnostic technologies play an important role on field surveillance of influenza viruses in human as well as animals such as pets, poultry and other farm animals for the control of zoonotic or pandemic influenza viruses. We plan to develop a new turn-on fluorescent smart detection device for simple, rapid, and semi-quantitative point-of-care diagnostics of influenza viruses. This diagnostics platform will offer rapid tests for influenza viruses in human facilitating the prescription of antiviral drugs and support new antiviral drug and vaccine development. 

ABCT_Wong Man Kin


Principal Investigator: Prof. Man-Kin Wong (Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology)


A Device for Measurement of Covered Curvature


External measurements of the body curvature can evaluate the musculoskeletal system, such as obtaining changes in spine curvature for spinal health assessment. However, body surfaces may be covered and challenging to measure, for example, measuring the back while lying on the back, sitting in a chair, or carrying a backpack. Therefore, multiple inertial measurement units were integrated into a concise circuit to fabricate a curvature measurement tape. The self-developed algorithm facilitates accurate and real-time measurement of covered curvature. This device is portable, non-invasive, and cost-effective. In addition to the spine assessment, there are other potential applications, for example, integration into an endoscope to achieve the position detection function of the device.








Curvature measurement Tape - bending









Curvature measurement Tape - lying















Principal Investigators: Tommy Tung-Ho HONG (Department of Biomedical Engineering)



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