Prof XU is currently a Professor jointly appointed by the Department of Medicine and the Department of Pharmacology & Pharmacy, and also the director for State Key Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology (www.sklpb.hku.hk) at the University of Hong Kong. He received his BS (Hons) in medicine at Anhui Medical University in China in 1989 and his PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Auckland in New Zealand in 1999. He received his postdoctoral training at the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Auckland working on the proteomic identification of novel adipocyte-derived factors involved in obesity and insulin resistance.
Prof XU is interested in obesity-related research. Obesity is a major risk factor of type 2 diabetes (T2DM), insulin resistance and cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). In obesity, chronic metabolic stresses trigger adipose tissue inflammation and promote macrophage infiltration, resulting in aberrant secretion of bioactive peptides (known as adipokines). Our primary research interest is to investigate the role of adipokines in the pathogenesis of obesity-related insulin resistance, systemic inflammation, T2DM and vascular dysfunctions in animal models and human subjects.