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​Prof. Shelly Lap-Ah TSE 謝立亞教授


Prof. Shelly Lap-Ah TSE

BMed (Fudan), PhD (CUHK), PgD Dip. Occ. Hyg.(CUHK), ICOH (member), FHKIOEH (fellow)


  • Director, Professional Diploma Programme in Occupational and Environmental Medicine| Hygiene | Health Practice (OEM | OEH | OEHP)
  • Director, Center for Occupational and Environmental Health Studies (COEHS)

  • Director, The CUHK Center of Public Health and Primary Care (Shenzhen)

  • Associate Director, Institute of Space and Earth Information Science, CUHK

  • Chairman, Advisory Committee – Environmental Hygiene, CUHK

  • National Secretary of International Commission on Occupational Health (ICOH), People’s Republic of China

  • Chair, Quality Assurance Sub-committee & Member, Occupational Health and Safety Council

  • Honorary Advisor, Department of Family Medicine & General Outpatient Clinic, Kowloon Central Cluster (KCC FM&GOPC), Hospital Authority

  • Visiting Professor, Shanghai Jiaotong University, China

  • Visiting Professor, Nanjing Medical University, China


Professor Shelly Tse is an occupational and environmental epidemiologist who joined the Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care of the Chinese University of Hong Kong as an Assistant Professor in 2007. Since her last promotion in 2013 as Associate Professor, her research has continued to receive international recognition including being awarded six competitive research grants as PI and one co-PI from local, national and international granting bodies such as GRF/RGC, HMRF, PCFB, NSFC (mainland), ENSURE (CUHK-UoE (UK)), as well as research grants from NIH (USA). Shelly has more than 160 research publications in web of science.

Shelly has long-term international collaboration with NCI/NIH (USA) and I3CARE with Utrecht University and University of Toronto leading the theme of 24/7 exposome society and demonstrated that nightshift work and nighttime eating involving circadian disruption increase risk of obesity, metabolic syndrome, liver injuries and breast cancer. Also, she has collaboration with the IARC/WHO for lung cancer SYNERGY project to generate global evidence for IARC’ monograph on the carcinogenicity of various occupational exposures. Shelly’s national/international profile is also reflected through a number of awards and international activities, including the State Scientific and Technological Progress Award second-class award (2014), the first keynote & plenary speaker in International Congress on Occupational Health (ICOH) from Hong Kong (2018, Dublin, Ireland), President & Fellow of a professional body Hong Kong Institute of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (HKIOEH), and external grant peer reviewer of Medical Research Council of UK and NSFC (mainland).

Being the course coordinator for both undergraduate (PHPC3017) and postgraduate courses (OENV5002, PUBH6004), Shelly has devoted her greatest passion in teaching with consistent good CTE scores. Recently, she has developed and led the Professional Diploma Programme in Occupational and Environmental Medicine | Health Practice | Hygiene with wide recognition from the peers. As a devoted occupational and environmental epidemiologist, she also provides expert opinions to impact policy making to the Hong Kong government to resolve public health crisis and wider public education via local and international media (e.g., South China Morning Post, The Washington Post).


  • Occupational and environmental exposures on cancers

    • Lung cancer: occupational exposures (e.g., silica/silicosis, asbestos/asbestosis, occupations), environmental

    • exposures (e.g., incense smoke burning, residential radon exposure, cigarette and secondhand smoke)

    • Breast cancer: nightshift work, circadian disruption, dietary factors etc

    • Prostate cancer: environmental bisphenol A, dietary factors, nightshift work, etc

  • Shiftwork, sleep/circadian rhythm and various health impacts

    • Incidence of neutropenia fever of breast cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy (a prospective cohort study

    • with circadian rhythm measured by actigraphy and urinary melatonin)

    • Association of shiftwork with breast and prostate cancer

    • Obesity and metabolic syndrome (a prospective cohort of >6000 nightshift workers in China)

    • Mild cognitive impairment in pneumoconiosis patients and community people

  • Other research interests including, occupational environmental health and safety


  • In the past 2 years during 2018-2020, I awarded FOUR competitive research grants and ONE research grant from international granting body as PI or co-PI, namely,

    • Exposure prevention behavior survey and urinary concentrations of short/long half-life chemicals among e-waste recycling workers in Hong Kong. Granting agency: General Research Fund/RESEARCH GRANTS COUNCIL (GRF/RGC); Awarded year: 2020 [role: PI]

    • Workplace safety towards SARS-CoV-2 among non-healthcare workers in Hong Kong, Nanjing and Wuhan: prevention, response and sustainability. Granting agency: Health and Medical Research Fund (HMRF) commissioned project for COVID-19. Awarded year: 2020 [role: PI]

    • Global Food Security, Climate Change and Resilience: An International Perspective. Granting agency: CUHK-University of Exeter Joint Centre for Environment Sustainability & Resilience (ENSURE). Awarded year: 2019 [role: co-PI]

    • Sleep Deprivation, Circadian Disruption and Mild Cognitive Impairment among Patients with Silicosis in Hong Kong. Granting agency: Pneumoconiosis Compensation Fund Board (PCFB). Awarded year: 2018 [role: PI]

    • Hong Kong Breast Cancer Genomics Study. Granting agency: National Cancer Institute of National Institutes of Health. Awarded year: 2019 [role: PI]


  1. Li, Wentao; Kwok, Carol Chi-Hei; Chan, Dominic Chun-Wan; Ho, Amy Wing-Yin; Ho, Chung-Shun; Zhang, Jihui; Wing, Yun Kwok; Wang, Feng; Tse, Lap Ah*. Disruption of sleep, sleep-wake activity rhythm, and nocturnal melatonin production in breast cancer patients undergoing adjuvant chemotherapy: Prospective cohort study. Sleep Medicine. 2019; 55: 14-21.

  2. Bin Zhu, Lap Ah Tse, Difei Wang, Hela Koka, Tongwu Zhang, Mustapha Abubakar, Priscilla Lee, Feng Wang, Cherry Wu, Koon Ho Tsang, Wing-cheong Chan, Sze Hong Law, Mengjie Li, Wentao Li, Suyang Wu, Zhiguang Liu, Bixia Huang, Han Zhang, Eric Tang, Zhengyan Kan, Soohyeon Lee, Yeon Hee Park, Seok Jin Nam, Mingyi Wang, Xuezheng Sun, Kristine Jones, Bin Zhu, Amy Hutchinson, Belynda Hicks, Ludmila Prokunina-Olsson, Jianxin Shi, Montserrat Garcia-Closas, Stephen Chanock and Xiaohong R. Yang*. Immune gene expression profiling reveals heterogeneity in luminal breast tumors. Breast Cancer Research. 2019; 21 (1): 147.

  3. Tse, Lap Ah*; Lin, Xiaona; Li, Wentao; Qiu, Hong; Chan, Chi Kuen; Wang, Feng; Yu, Ignatius Tak-sun; Leung, Chi Chiu. Smoking cessation sharply reduced lung cancer mortality in a historical cohort of 3185 Chinese silicotic workers from 1981 to 2014. British Journal of Cancer. 2018; 119 (12): 1557-1562.

  4. Tse Lap Ah *, Lee Priscilla Ming Yi , Ho Wing Ming, Lam Augustine Tsan, Lee Man Kei, Ng Simon Siu Man, He Yonghua Leung Ka-sing, Hartle Jennifer C., Hu Howard, Kan Haidong, Wang Feng, Ng Chi Fai. Bisphenol A and Other Environmental Risk Factors for Prostate Cancer in Hong Kong. Environment International 2017;107 :1-7.

  5. Li Mengjie, Tse Lap Ah*†, Chan Wing-cheong, Kwok Chi-hei, Leung Siu-lan, Wu Cherry, Yu Wai-cho, Lee Priscilla Ming-yi, Tsang Koon-ho, Law Sze-hong, Vermeulen Roel, Gu Fangyi, Caporaso Neil E.,Yu Ignatius Tak-sun, Wang Feng, Yang Xiaohong Rose. Nighttime eating and breast cancer among Chinese women in Hong Kong. Breast Cancer Research (2017) 19:31 [*Corresponding and †co-first author]

  6. TSE Lap Ah, YU Tak Sun Ignatius, ROTHMAN Nathaniel, JI Bu-tian, QIU Hong, WANG Xiaorong, HU Wei, AU Joseph Siu-kie and LAN Qin. Joint Effects of Environmental Exposures and Familial Susceptibility to Lung Cancer in Chinese Never Smoking Men and Women. Journal of Thoracic Oncology. 2014;9 (8): 1066–1072.

  7. Wang Feng, Yeung Kin-long, Chan, Wing-cheong, Kwok chi-hei Carol, Leung Siu-lan, Wu Cherry, Chan Ying Yang Emily, Yu Ignatius Tak-sun, Yang Xiaorong Rose, Tse Lap Ah*. A meta-analysis on dose-response relationship between night shift work and the risk of breast cancer. Annals of Oncology. 2013; 24: 2724–2732.

  8. Tse Lap Ah, Ignatius Tak-sun Yu, Hong Qiu, Joseph Siu Kie Au, and Xiao-rong Wang. A Case-Control Study of Lung Cancer and Incense Smoke, Smoking and Residential Radon in Chinese Men. Environmental Health Perspectives 2011; 119:1641-1646.

  9. Tse Lap Ah, Ignatius Tak-sun YU, Hong QIU, Joseph Siu-kie AU, Xiao Rong WANG, Wilson TAM, and Kai Shing YU. Lung Cancer Decreased Sharply in First Five Years after Smoking Cessation in Chinese Men. Journal of Thoracic Oncology 2011; 6:1670-6.

  10. TSE Lap Ah; YU Tak Sun Ignatius; GOGGINS III William Bernard; CLEMENT Mark; WANG Xiaorong; AU Joseph Siu-kie and YU Kai Shing. Are current or future mesothelioma epidemics in Hong Kong the tragic legacy of uncontrolled use of asbestos in the past? Environmental Health Perspectives 2010;118(3):382-6.

Last Updated: 13 August 2020

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