Jan 10, 2024 12:00:00 PM       by Kin Leung

Diabetes, Obesity, and Accessibility: Considerations For GLP-1 Drugs

As the new year gets going, most people have already set some New Year's resolutions (here's some if you're of the science-y academic ilk) and chief among these is usually to exercise more and lose that holiday weight after the mounds of cookies and pie. It is perhaps not a coincidence that the latest Science Magazine Breakthrough of the Year recognizes GLP-1 drugs, which have been shown not only to be effective in managing diabetes, but also has significant impact on weight loss. The demand for these drugs has skyrocketed over the last few years as the word of their efficacy has spread, leading to supply chain issues that could adversely affect diabetes patients dependent on the medications. As the various GLP-1 drugs remain in short supply, it seems a good time to explore these drugs, their potential contributions to global human health, and what can be done to ensure they are accessible to those who need them most.


Dec 7, 2022 12:00:00 PM       by Kin Leung

The Ongoing Battle Against HIV and AIDS

December is a month of holidays and celebration, but it is also a time to raise awareness for a global epidemic that has lasted over four decades. During World HIV/AIDS Awareness Month, health organizations, including the United States Department of Veteran Affairs, serve to remind everyone about the importance of getting tested, to remember those who succumbed to the disease, and to improve access to advanced therapies.

Since its first identification and description in 1981, medical advances have offered effective therapies to keep the virus at bay, and in some cases even completely cure a patient of the human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV, and to prevent it from becoming the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, or AIDS, which is often catastrophic to the patient. Unfortunately, as of 2021 per the World Health Organization (WHO), there are still over 38 million people living with HIV, with approximately 1.5 million new infections and 650,000 HIV-related deaths. Much of this has to do with lack of education or proper infrastructure and often obstacles to accessibility for treatment and prevention. I hope to explore HIV with you during this month of awareness so we can do our part to mitigate this persistent epidemic.

Sep 7, 2022 12:00:00 PM       by Kin Leung

Why Accessibility and Collaboration are Critical to Good Science

Like most PhD students, I had to generate publications in order to earn my doctorate, and my mentor had to use those publications to support his grant applications. The ability to churn out publications in volume is critical to sustaining academic research, and the labs with the best reputations are the ones who regularly crank out quality articles that land in top-tier journals. However, does science have to be driven this way? Are we overlooking some great scientists or discoveries because they were unable to find the opportunities for funding and exposure, and thus dropped academia in search of another career? We should explore improving accessibility to funding and publication in research so that everyone has the chance to share their ideas.