John H C Ho

BMJ 2005; 331 doi: (Published 08 September 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:578

Innovative Hong Kong radiologist who widened our understanding of the causes of nasopharyngeal cancer

Professor John Ho Hung-chiu was instrumental in the establishment of cancer treatment in Hong Kong, conducted ground-breaking research on nasopharyngeal cancer, and turned Hong Kong into a centre of excellence in radiology training.

In a public sector career spanning four decades, Professor Ho established the first radiology services and cancer centres in hospitals across Hong Kong. He also raised the funds to open Nam Long Hospital in 1967, the city's only dedicated facility for cancer treatment and hospice care at that time.

Until the first academic department of radiology and oncology was established at the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 1984, research in the cancer field was conducted within the hospitals under the wing of Professor Ho. His own pioneering work was into the causes and treatment of nasopharyngeal cancer, a common cancer in southern China. He discovered that the early introduction of salted preserved fish into the infant diet was a causative factor, and also discovered the relation between nasopharyngeal cancer and the Epstein-Barr virus. From …

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