Saturday, November 28, 2015

What I Learnt from Phase 1 Conference?

I always feels that international conference is very much different than local conference, in the sense that the talks and speeches are on their work, unlike local ones which sometimes talk on the textbook content.

And so with a bit of luck, I had the chance to go to ICPOEP - International Conference on Phase 1 and Early Phase Clinical Trials in Hong Kong.

All the way from Seberang Jaya at Grand Hyatt Hotel, TST defined Phase 1 as studies that are usually conducted with healthy volunteers and that emphasize safety. The goal is to find out what the drug's most frequent and serious adverse events are and, often, how the drug is metabolized and excreted.

Of course, the obligatory photo as a traveler in Hong Kong
This conference is organised by Clinical Trial Centre, University of Hong Kong. As you can see, their's is a bit different setup from ours in Clinical Research Centre, Malaysia. They are part of the university and their hospital is part of the university.

There is a section displaying their trial set up. There is a large picture of the view from clinical trial ward. The hospital which houses the trial ward is overlooking ocean view of Hong Kong. They make the subjects feel that they are on Holiday rather than coming in for Research. Basic amenities such as soaps, shampoos, slippers are Hotel-like, and menu of the food there is extremely attractive!

Each of them given this starterpack. Note that there is an IPAD with entertainment, something like flight entertaiment concept.
Macam Hotel
Menu. Ganas.
The talk started right on time. Good organisation I would say. The list of speakers were impressive. Mostly were Chinese names based in overseas, renowned medical centres, like Ninewells Dundee, NUS Singapore, Imperial London, Uni of Toronto Canada, Harvard just to name a few.

I took pictures of almost all slides to keep me awake throughout the sessions, and for the purpose of this entry, for my goldfish memory. I'll share some slides which are very interesting, at least to me.

Let me start with this Prof Gail Echardt's talk on challenges and opportunities in early phase trial. She was given an award lecture in Drug Development in this annual conference. She is a very established early phase researcher from Colorado, USA. She shared her experience in organising her Phase 1 centres, particularly her strategies in nurturing new researchers and going away from MD-driven hierarchy. 

I particularly like this slide. She showed that there is a disease specific team leader and coordinator which oversees the Phase 1 study, specifically on that disease, and they typically follow through as the study progresses to Phase 2 and 3. 
Let me just say that in this slide, the last sentence is the killer!
I think I will not be able to go in depth in all talks. 

Let me move on to my favourite speaker, Prof Lee M Ellis. His CV is long, but for the sake of his speech, suffice to know that he is a journal editor. He talked about research integrity. 

He talked about increasing occurrence of fraud and dishonesty in research conduct. He feels that this is all because of academic pressure which is unnecessary. He gave examples of Japanese Riken scientists and Anil Potti in Duke. 

I think it is very relevant to us, in Malaysia whereby the push for publication is high, but without proper mentoring. There is a very high pressure on us to perform. In that process, it is important to keep in mind that we do not sway from good research integrity, attempted plagiarism, sloppy reporting, dishonesty and academic bullying.

I would think most of us are Sloppy, but hopefully we dont Fabricate.
I have nothing to publish in CNS. LOL
It is funny when some proposals I was told that was rejected previously because it has been done. Our top level needs to know the importance of reproduciblity of any research to test the hypothesis repeatedly. We learnt to do more, as we done more.
I would love to see this kind of fresh talk in NCCR.

OK, lets move to a intellectual talk. This Prof Mak Tak-Wah, is extremely funny man. I think he is damn old, probably in his 70s and his job is just travelling around the world giving speech. Despite his age you see, he is given a topic - Future Oncology Targets, just to show how big is his name in advanced research of Oncology. He basically went through from historical perspective on how unsuccessful our endeavors in coming out with new oncology drugs, mainly because we had the wrong conception. But right now, there are many new targets being pursued, which his lab is working on, and he even shared a slide of which it has just been published on that day itself.

New targets, note the footnote. The conference was on 19/11/15 - it was just published today
Warburg is a Nobel Prize winner who said Cancer is not caused by Virus or genes, both very wrong. But we progress not because scientists changed their minds, but because they die. Scientists - sometimes, over-believed their science.
Note that Prof Mak is the main author!
Other interesting speakers and slides:

 This was Prof Swanton's talk on  Cancer Evolution and Implications to research. Oncology which have seen past 12 years of research producing 72 FDA approved drugs with 52 new targeted approaches but only producing meagre 2.1 months of improved overall survival. 
How stagnant is our research progress and yet we we think we have progressed very much.

I think this is an exceptionally good topic. Prof Plesner gave a talk of his entire journey with Daratumumab, a new therapy for Multiple Myeloma. He was there in the Phase 1 trial in his Hematology Unit and Clinical Research Unit and all the way right up to Marketing. Such a complete research story to share.
Dr Chan Wing-Kai is a very outspoken person. He gave a brief outline of clinical trial in Taiwan. More like an advertisement type of talk, he told us the strength of Taiwan Clinical Research. But I took one point from him very deeply, is that if you want to be the boss, you must have gone through the entire process, A to Z, and keep youself involved in the entire process, and then you can be the BOSS. Taiwan is very far ahead of us in Clinical Trial, mainly because they have such competitive character like Dr Chan.
From Singapore, we have Danny Soon, well known figure in the field of clinical research South East Asia. Very straight to the point and motivated person, he is an example why Singaporean soars in every field they put their foot into. We can see from this one slide how far ahead is everyone else in terms of Phase 1 studies.
I checked with NMRR, we have two Phase 1 studies in this country as of today.

All in all, I enjoyed the conference very much, it shows me how behind is my exposure to current world and we need super flying speed to be catching up with the rest of the world.

Perhaps we should start with nurturing good research attitude and research culture. 

and pray.

Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Do work for a cause. Not for applause.

Live life to express. Not to impress.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015


Arghhh..still struggling to get the pace to settle the review of CVS.

Actually it is an easy task to do, as in everything is just in the computer, but I have too many distractions.

Need to step up and gear up!

The plan is to settle it within 1 month, get it published, and then move on to other papers I already can write it up.

Come on Ang!

Thursday, August 06, 2015


20% progress....since started in Bukit Fraser

Oh why write-up so slow...why....

Must settle in 2 weeks!!

Come on Ang Choon Seong!


Friday, July 24, 2015


Semua nak menang, siapa nak kalah?

As I ages, I starts to understand the heavy meaning of the above seemingly light sentence

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Bangkok 5565

I went to Bangkok for an investigators meeting.
Konkunkap to this company and this study.

DS - Arigatokap

Hospitality is so superb. (Already buying 5565 for today Magnum/Toto/Kuda)

The Westin Hotel is really a very posh hotel... (yeah, wont be able to afford actually, hahaha..too ex la)

Didnt go anywhere else apart from around the Hotel, coz scared meet orang jahat tangkap. LOL

(lack of travel funds la, "why my father is not Li Kah Sing")

Only went out across the street to the shopping mall, Westin is just right next to one very interesting shopping mall, the Terminal 21.

The concept is based on airport designed terminal...

The 9 storey high Terminal 21
We were treated very nice reception dinner at the 26 storey Altitude with spectacular view of Bangkok. Not a quarter of investigators turned up. For me it shows how investigators treating the investigators meeting concept. Right or wrong? oh well, small potato here I would like to show my gratitude for the hospitality. (oh probably some will cite their disagreement with the profitability of the pharma and their abuses, erm...then why you take the free trip?)

Like this shot.
Would I be one day having a building under my name? ACS on top of the building

DS is a Japanese company. The investigators are trying very hard to converse in English, which is rather difficult to learn for them, as their Japanese Language makes it harder in terms of pronounciation.

So I thought to myself, If I am able to, I will try to learn up this language. 

It will be so cool right, if I blahblahblah in Japanese.

On a serious note, medical advances of the Japanese is very impressive. We must admit that their discipline and attitudes is somewhat very enviable.

We tend to ignore them and continue to idolise the West in terms of medical research. 

But they had too many success stories for us to ignore them actually.

For example, there must be something done very right for their ACS rate to be that low, their rate of transplantation of kidneys are so successful and etc.

Yes, 2017 probably I can - Angchoonseong-san.

Saturday, June 20, 2015


I have always wonder what would I be if I am not a doctor?

"Marketing lah! I can talk to anyone from anywhere of any age one"

"Management lah! I like to organise things and many times to have been able to get people to work hard for me!"

Yes, that might be true.

I applied Medicine because I wanted a reputable line of job.

I want people to know I can do things they cant do, sometimes even with money.

Respect has to be earned.

But as I go further and deeper into medicine, I realised although my deepest interest might not be in medicine, but deep inside us, we have altruistic tendencies.

To see people get well.

To see people happy.

And to see the people we care happy!

That is why I always thought to myself, doctors can only be truly happy, if patients do not pay for their treatments.

When we factor in money, this noble thing that I am trying to do is full of suspicious, full of intent

both from the patients and family,

and myself.

I also want to be rich, who doesnt?

But if money is the one thing that makes you keep going, in this line;

you might not be able to enjoy to be happy anyway.

*Reminder to self, of the real meaning of life, and taking care of lives*

Monday, June 15, 2015

Next door

I am in KL for a work-related visit (ceh wah).

Booked a hotel within the claiming expenses somewhere nearby KL Sentral and since the day is still bright, decided to have a walk around KL sentral.

Walked past Jalan Sultan Abdul Samad, very Indian feel. A lot of Indians, with some warungs and teh tarik stalls.

The 4 storeys flats and shophouses below them, with mostly doing small businesses like printings, locksmiths, some distributors etc.

Then I turned into some roads with Brickfields name - still alot of people walking around the street. I must admit I am seeing more foreigners.

Then there is this road (not small lanes, I am not that hero)

with a lot of man sitting on chairs and tables chit chatting near the entrance to the upstairs of 3 storeys very old looking shophouses, and it looks very dodgy, I just walked quickly passed it.

Actually heard some woman's cries from the upstairs and then the man downstairs sitting there just smile among them.

I dont know. I felt quite sad.

It is not that I am culturally shocked, this type of things existed even in Penang.

But dont know, it is today emo terlebih or what

I feel a sense of sadness, that just behind that row of flats, just like 15-20 steps away, literally just behind that only to another shop houses overlooking

the grand, modern looking, shopping mall of Nu Sentral,

where people dressed up nicely in branded stuffs

where cars are valet parked

where most of the coffee and cakes costs RM20 above

where people spent hundreds on lunch only

and just nearby

we have young/old women forced into prostitution.

and we just walked through, and continue our lives.

Sorry, maybe it is just overthinking Whatblog.

Sunday, June 14, 2015


What you plan to do when you are old?

I hope I can collect enough money to operate a small cafe in some not so busy town.

Everyday can chit chat.

and earn money.

At first was thinking of small B&B, or hotel. But thinking back..

dont want la, later ppl rent room to kau yeh.


*Above was a stall selling egg tart and some other local delicacies in Penang Carnovan St.

Operated by very old ppl. And these are truly hand made, nice old Penang taste.

Combined age of the three operators would be almost 2 and half centuries.

Sunday, June 07, 2015

NCCR 2015

"We are arriving in 5 minutes," read the text sent to me via Whatsapp.

I made bigger and faster strides to the ever cheerful crowd of committee members and whispered,"Get the CRC family ready at the lobby for photo taking. The Minister and Big Boss going to be here very soon".

Yang Berhormat Minister of Health Malaysia, Datuk Seri S. Subramaniam arrived at the Bayview Beach Hotel Penang with huge smile. Accompanied by National Director of Clinical Research Centre Dr Goh Pik Pin and CEO of Clinical Research Malaysia Dr Akhmal Yusof from airport, he was warmly welcomed by the Deputy Director General of Health Dr Shahnaz Murad, State Health Director Dato' Dr Hajah Zailan and by about seventy of us in purple Batiks at the lobby.

Warm greetings were exchanged among the VIPs, and a family photo of the members of the Clinical Research Centre (CRC) with the minister was quickly taken.

The Entire Family of Clinical Research Centre and YB Minister
The minister then made his way quickly to the event hall and was greeted with cheers by 520 curious delegates of the 9th National Conference of Clinical Research (NCCR). It was indeed such an honour to have the busy minister flew all the way from Kuala Lumpur on the earliest flight of the day, to open this conference.

In his speech, he reminded the members of the healthcare that despite overwhelming demand of service in our settings, clinical research should never fell out of our radar. He sent a strong word of encouragement to the local researchers to buck up and speed up. "There is still a huge gap in our understanding of diseases, particularly Dengue, which is very common in our country and hardly seen in the West. We are on our own to close this gap and we must not give up, even if we stumbled and we must try over and over again. It is our disease, affecting our own people and we can't run away kept hoping for discoveries from the Western countries".

Being a medical doctor himself, the Minister sat through the 45-minute-long CRC named lecture by a world renowned epidemiologist, Dr Elizabeth Barret Connor. She shared her inspiration journey in research in Gender and Aging for the past 30 years, particularly the story of how she courageously took on the challenge in her very first research project in epidemiology - an area she was unfamiliar with then; "Have courage and never say No, too early!"

Distinguished speaker Prof Elizabeth Connor
The two-and-a-half-day conference was attended by a total of 520 participants from all over the country. Speakers from both abroad and local institutions were carefully selected and invited. With the main theme of "Research that Matters to Society" and focusing on "Aging", a huge spectrum of talks from these 17 distinguished speakers were spelled out for the participants.

There were a few speakers were particularly impressive. Prof Dr Maria Rosario (Happy) G. Araneta, an epidemiologist in University of California USA shared her research quest to understand the link between Metabolic syndrome and ethnicity. On the lighter side, she also presented her new studies of the effects of Yoga and Zumba dancing in Metabolic Syndrome and that was clearly well received by a large section of our young audience.

Another notable invitational speaker is Prof Lo Eng Haw from Harvard Medical School. He was a local Penang boy who has made a name in stroke research. His impressive work on Stroke at the basic science and cellular level were published in many top notched scientific journal such as Nature and Science. His talk, "When Stroke Strikes the Aging Brain - Cell-cell Signaling surprisingly did not lose the audience which were mostly of clinical background. The feedback from the ground was that it was one of the best basic science talk that we ever had.

The conference was not all only about how advanced the world out there. We had a list of our country's top researchers sharing their works in the conference. Our Deputy Director General of Health, Dr Shahnaz Murad was well known for her work in Immunogenicity of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Her research on specific rheumatoid arthritis biomarkers among Asians paved ways for further works to understand the immunogenicity of our own patients' population.

In the field of academic research, we were very proud to have Prof Dato’ Dr Ruszymah Bt Hj Idrus and Prof Yuen Kah Hay to share their works. Prof Dr Ruszymah captured the audience with her impressive presentation on her research in skin tissue engineering. The product of her discovery "Myskin" was patented and successfully used in human patients. Prof Yuen on the other hand, was a key scientist in the research of tocotrienol, an isoform of Vitamin E found in palm oil. He found them to be effective in slowing down aging process of brain cells and received worldwide recognition for his work.
Prof Yuen from USM answering queries from the floor regarding his work in neuroprotection of Tocotrienol.
We accepted a total of 160 posters nationwide with on a variety of clinical research areas. Eminent clinical researchers were selected to make up the panel of judges. We had Prof John Chan Kok Meng, Prof Yeow Toh Peng and Prof Asrul Akmal in the panel and they came to a consensus that it was too difficult to shortlist just three submissions for oral presentations for Dr Wu Lien Teh's Young Investigator Award. Instead, they requested to add another category of award with 3 posters for Best Posters Award during the conference after went through all the posters.

A section of the 160 posters on displayed

It was an absolute pleasure to have worked with many interesting characters throughout the months of preparation for this conference. We were very glad to receive so many constructive feedbacks from both the participants and speakers. On behalf of the organising committee, I would like to thank everyone who have involved directly or indirectly, in making the 9th NCCR a successful meeting of clinical researchers. See you in 2016.

Committee Members of the 9th NCCR Penang, 2015
Ang Choon Seong
CRC Hospital Seberang Jaya 2015

Wednesday, June 03, 2015


Back to blogging because it kick starts my reading project.

This morning I saw a bad accident, oh well there is never a good accident anyway.

Accidents are meant to be bad.

There were a pile up of 7 cars i think, or maybe 6, cant really count them all.

The driver of the first car seemed relax, the rest were not so cool.

The one behind was shouting away.

We all know that the one behind going to kena all the way already.

This is the law.

Although he might not be the one at fault, to a certain extent.

It has to be, usually the one most infront braked and the cars behind all knocked each others back because followed to closely.

But in love, we like to blame people.

Sometimes, we have to take it that there is no one to blame.

We need to carry on.

We need to know that some people cars also dont have.

Some people, never sat a car before. (truestory)

And who are we to be so saddening and keep the blaming game going?

In the end, what makes we happy, are the true happiness.

Not what make others think that we are happy.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015


I remembered when I was in medical school, first examination I had was an awful one.

I stayed awake entire night to read up, but the thing is that one cannot chase back entire 6 month's things within a night.

Not when you dont even care what is on the lecture.

I guessed if I can turn back time, I will read my books properly.

One particular question that I will remember till today was on: Circle of Willis.

I think the question goes like; Draw the blood vessels forming circle of willis of the brain.

I drew a circle and wrote there....willis.

Such was my medical school days.

N it felt just like yesterday

Oh my oh my. How i wish I studied hard in those days.

Monday, May 11, 2015


She heard from her friends that Gym is fun.

So I brought her to my apartment's gym.

It lasted for ...

15 minutes before she asked me when we are going for breakfast.



Sunday, April 19, 2015

Finishing Line

The finishing line

Is the state of mind.

We have so many finishing line in life.

Important to keep having if not we will stop moving.

While money is a great finishing line, it has no limits.

Not to say I am a noble person who not into money, no

the opposite is truer I think

But I always believe it wholistic advancement.

Having the right amount of money at the right time.

In the past I kept thinking what will I do when I am this old this old doing this job that job

But once maturity or laziness sets in, perhaps reading a good book is better than earning that locum slot.


(always keep finding excuses not doing locum)

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Old song

Old song never, gets old.

Saturday, March 21, 2015


This is such a delay entry.

I dropped my phone when opening my car door.

It hit at the cornerest of the corner of the phone.

After that, the touch screen became no response already, of the 3/4 of the screen.

1/4 of the screen actually still okay...

But nowadays, touchscreen phone, cannot be used if only 1/4 responding...

That reminds of my Nokia fone many years ago in Edinburgh (i searched my blog but apparently I didnt document down this event, arghhh)

At that time I was using a Nokia, no we dont have touchscreen yet.

I always play 5-a-side football bringing only a fiver (Angmoh way of saying 5 pounds) and the fone.

Then I put my fone at the side of the goalpost.

My friend shouted, "Wei, you dont want your fone already ah, put like that sure pecah one"

I said,"you want to shoot the ball in the goal also difficult already, what are the chances the ball hit my phone?"

We played.

One of the shot, I forgot who did it, missed the goal, but got the phone sweetly...

The ball hit the phone, and the phone flew hitting the post.

And the screen cracked, only can see 1/2 the screen. The other half was black.

And so I cannot see the message of the SMS sent to me, but I got unlimited free minutes call, so whenever I received SMS, I can see the sender, and sometimes I will need to call the sender.

Because, I can only guess what is the SMS...

It was a tiring half year using a half phone....


Sunday, March 08, 2015

Change! (again)

I used to be scolded yi si yi yang.

Meaning, inconsistent.

Hahaha, today i officially reported in to a new job at the new department - Clinical Research Centre.

What do I do?

I dont know, but involves doing research first hand or give a hand to other people in conducting research. You know, statistics and so on.

Just lazy to do clinics and so on la, escape a while.

Seems like involves a lot of travelling, but I like it.

Now this is typed in Palm Garden Resort, Putrajaya.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Gong Xi Gong Xi

A very good feat to be able to continue our commitment in coming together no matter where we are every year, during the 3rd day of CNY.

It started all in Lee Ken's house but now we moved on from place to place.

A gathering whereby married friends have to give us ang pow

and we battled on the table.

This year I lost about 200, funding various renovation costings of Kenny's place.

And like every other year....

Valerie is the centre of attraction. So cute when she was a baby, and now so cute as a toddler.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Gong Xi Fa Cai

Happy Chinese New Year Sau Kong Lunch with colleagues from Medical Department Sungai Petani.

It has been a great year working with all of you.

May we continue to grow and improve and serve better.

- Ang CS-

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Entering Year of Goat

And so, we have come to another Chinese New Year.

Year of Goat was said to be a bad year for ox.


Year of Horse is bad enough loh!!!

Found to have torn ligament and gout.

Everytime watch football at night, felt a bit down.


No more football

No more jogging

No more hiking.

Time to study more I guess.

Lets hope for the best. Gong xi fa cai. Positive positive = positive.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Monday, January 26, 2015


2 months liau FML.

Cannot walk properly

Cannot run

Cannot hike

Practically off sports for 2 months liau.

Eat then shit eat then shit eat then shit.

Sien la....

Orang kurang upaya sukan.

Will definitely need to buy new pants for cny.

Oh god pls heal my ankle!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I dunwan to retire so early!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Where to eat in Penang - Midnight Duckrice

New theme to whatablog!

Air Itam Market, not the cleanest market you can find so this is not a good place whose immune system were undertrained.

For me, it is okay. Hahahaha.

The duckrice in Air Itam market has a long queue starts about 10pm. Usually I will go about 1am after movies or football.

The duck meat is the loh type not the usual roasted ones. Usually I don't like those but this stall's duck is good.

Anyways, I do not advocate midnight supper but if you have to have one, this is a definitely a good one!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Ankle Aspiration

Had a medical procedure on your own self is no fun.

LA itself is painful.

Anyways, I am finished liau.

I mean, from football.

Asked my colleague to aspirate my ankle if it is really coming back as gout crystal.

Mana tau...

Aspiration is no joke.

It was really painful.

And aspirated blood. Might be traumatic. Might be really hematoma swelling from old injury.

Don't know.

Omfg. Omfg. Omfg.

Saturday, January 10, 2015


Have been running out of ideas to blog these days, despite being on MC.

Perhaps age is catching, creativity slowly retarding.

2015 - Resolution; To stop wasting time on time wasting activities.

Friday, January 09, 2015

Blessed Marriage WyKy

(Delayed entry, for 3 weeks hehe)

Thanks for putting me in your best buddies list. Very honoured man!

Sorry for forgotten to charge my phone, missed the alarm, late for the hengtai project.

Ohya, wrong colour shirt for that too.

And for having unkempt hair, unshaven face for that project too.


Then when arriving at the garden ceremony, sorry I misunderstood and wear a tie instead. And Ah Butt have to give me his bowtie and making him wearing another colour bowtie. Spoiled your plan. Argh.

Thanks for inviting me to witness your exchange of vows, front seat.

And making me wearing a coat! The last time I wore coat was my graduation and the one before that was when I flew to UK as JPA scholar (yes, give u a lot of face my friend!)

Beautiful, meaningful and lovely event I must say.

Treat each other well!

Blessed marriage!



I sat at home tonight with my ankle swelled up to the size of a pau.

I thought of the history of this symptoms - ankle pain, when it all started.

Erm, housemanship!

I remember my first week tagging in Orthopedic, probably in early 2012 because that was my 4th posting, I think.

We tend to think we are fit and well, I mean me. How others perceive their health, I am not sure.

How can a long distance runner (ehem), regular football player, can ended up with such disability!

Dont know.

I gained about 8kg since back from Kuching, probably difficult to diet at home, have to eat with so many people part of my social responsibility.

Have not been playing futsal for more than 2 months now...

Cant believe my football activity came to an end because of gout at the age of 30.

With central obesity, high LDL, central obesity, hyperuricaemia;

scary thoughts - ACS will have higher risk of ACS.

Not a bad cause of death actually. haha.