About us

Dr. Teo KEE KEONG adrian

Adrian Teo, Ph.D., is currently a Principal Investigator at the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IMCB), A*STAR, an Assistant Professor at the Department of Biochemistry and Department of Medicine, NUS Medicine, Singapore, and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the School of Biological Sciences, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Adrian obtained his B.Sc. (1st Class Honours) from the National University of Singapore in February 2007. He then started to work on human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) with Ray Dunn, Ph.D., and Alan Colman, Ph.D., at ES Cell International Pte. Ltd., before joining the Institute of Medical Biology (IMB), A*STAR, Singapore, for an internship as a Research Officer in the laboratory of Ray Dunn, Ph.D.. ​In April 2008, he joined the laboratory of Ludovic Vallier, Ph.D., at the University of Cambridge to pursue his Ph.D. under the A*STAR Graduate Scholarship (Overseas). Concurrently, he was also an Honorary Cambridge Commonwealth Trust Scholar. His thesis described how pluripotency factors regulate endoderm specification via key regulator EOMESODERMIN.  He completed his Ph.D. in July 2010 and joined the laboratory of Ray Dunn, Ph.D., at IMB as a postdoctoral fellow before heading to the laboratory of Rohit Kulkarni, M.D. Ph.D., at Joslin Diabetes Center, Harvard Medical School in September 2011. During his fellowship at Joslin, he obtained two Harvard Stem Cell Institute seed grants and a Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) fellowship to pursue his research interests in using human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) for in vitro disease modelling of diabetes.  ​He is a member of the Oxford and Cambridge Society of Singapore, the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) and Stem Cell Society Singapore. ​


​Natasha is a post-doctoral research fellow in the Stem Cell and Diabetes research group in IMCB. She joined the group after completing her DPhil at the Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology & Metabolism at the University of Oxford under the supervision of Professors Anna Gloyn and Patrik Rorsman in 2017. Her research interests lie in understanding the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying genetic variants linked to diabetes and related glycemic traits from genome- and exome-wide association studies. She extends her interest and experience in this area to new projects in the Teo lab involving the study of monogenic forms of diabetes using human stem cell models. She hopes that her work will shed light on the biological mechanisms that influence disease risk and that the research will translate into better disease diagnosis and management strategies in future.

Prior to this, she obtained her BSc (First Class Honours) degree in Biology at Imperial College London in 2011. Upon graduation she spent a year as a research assistant at the Singapore Immunology Network at A*STAR in Prof Ren Ee Chee’s lab before moving into the field of diabetes and metabolism. Outside of research work she is a keen volunteer, hiker, graphic designer and also a co-founder of a start-up called BioMe Oxford based in the UK.


Lillian is a research fellow in the Stem Cells and Diabetes lab in IMCB. She recently completed her Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania under the supervision of Dr. Mark Kahn, where her work was focused on understanding the molecular regulation of lymphangiogenesis in the setting of injury. Her research interests are in understanding the mechanisms underlying disease progression, and she is excited to move into the field of diabetes, and hopes that her research will help to bring about the development of better therapeutics and treatment of disease. 

Before her Ph.D. studies, she did her undergraduate studies in Molecular and Cell Biology at the University of California, Berkeley. Outside of research, Lillian likes to stay active, and particularly enjoys the outdoors, running, and rock climbing.


I have a strong interest in Research since young. After graduation, I sought for a position in a research lab so as to be closer to my aspiration. In the vast research field, I soon realized that I am particularly attracted to human metabolism translational research.

​Diabetes is one of the major human metabolic diseases that has heavy impact on mankind and it will soon be the most common medical problem in Singapore. To make the matter worse, it has no cure. Diabetes research is therefore critical to be able to counter the issue with the design of new rational therapies. As such, Dr. Adrian Teo’s lab will be a place for me to learn and grow where I wish to apply my skills and knowledge in a more meaningful way.  


Shirley is a research officer in the Stem Cells and Diabetes research group in IMCB. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree at International Medical University (IMU), Malaysia, focusing on biomedical sciences (B.Sc (Hons) Biomedical Sciences). She had her first research experience while attached to Dr. Tham Chau Ling’s lab at the Universiti Putra Malaysia, whereby the study encompassed the assessment of a compound toxicity, developed by the group, on mast cell stabilising effect. Later, she pursued her Master degree at the Genetics & Regenerative Medicine Research Centre, Universiti Putra Malaysia under the supervision of Dr. Mok Pooi Ling in 2014. The project focuses on the use of genetically-modified mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in restoring degenerating retinal neurons and further trans-differentiation into retinal-like cells. Upon graduation, she joined Dr. Ng Shyh Chang’s skeletal muscle lab at the Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS) as a research officer. Her research interests lie in understanding of metabolic networks in the regulation of stem cell proliferation and differentiation for improvement of degenerative diseases. She aims to develop molecular and technical skills and further contribute to the developments in Dr. Teo's laboratory.


Resilind is a research officer in the Stem Cells and Diabetes research group in IMCB. Her experience with human mesenchymal stromal cells in the area of bone repair under Dr. Liu Tongming has allowed her to gain a vast amount of experience in the research translational field.

She was given the opportunity to work closely with Dr. Natasha from Dr. Adrian Teo’s lab, allowing her to further develop her interest in stem cell and diabetes research along with being involved in cell therapeutic efforts.

She not only seeks professional and self development consistently but also makes it a point to make time for her hobbies such as boxing, wakeboarding, swimming, traveling and scuba diving. One of her life motto is “Life is short, appreciate even the smallest things in life”.



Juin Ting is a research officer in the Stem Cells and Diabetes lab in IMCB. She graduated from Nanyang Technological University in 2021 with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Biological Sciences.

As an undergraduate, Juin Ting pursued various research interests, including the study of mechanical biology in Assoc. Prof. Koh Cheng Gee’s laboratory (NTU) and the study of mutational effects on progesterone receptor in Assoc. Prof. Valerie Lin’s laboratory (NTU). Her work on her undergraduate thesis, focused on elucidating peptide inhibitors for toxic islet amyloid polypeptide that is associated with Type 2 Diabetes (T2D), ignited her interest in the field of stem cells and diabetes and inspired her to pursue a career in science. Hence, Juin Ting hopes that her research in Dr. Adrian Teo’s laboratory will help to undercover more T2D risk variants for better disease management.

Apart from research, Juin Ting particularly enjoys spending time with her neighbourhood cat, Meow-Meow, and participating in outdoor activities such as hiking and kayaking.


Carmen is a research officer working in the Stem Cells and Diabetes Laboratory, under the supervision of Dr. Adrian Teo. She graduated from the National University of Singapore in 2021 with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Life Sciences (Specialization in Biomedical Science) and a minor in Medical Physics.

As an undergraduate, she has had the opportunity of working in Dr. Christoph Winkler's lab for a year, focusing on the characterisation of protein tyrosine phosphatase receptor type Z1 (PTPRZ1) in zebrafish. Additionally, Carmen also completed her final year project in Dr. Soh Boon Seng's lab, working on the modeling of cardiac hypertrophy using human stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. These opportunities further encouraged her to pursue a career in science. Currently in Dr. Adrian Teo's lab, Carmen is eager to further her skills, with hopes of contributing to the existing knowledge in the field of diabetes.

Apart from scientific research, Carmen enjoys socialising, singing, listening to music and spending time with her family.


Claire obtained her B.Sc. in Biological Sciences from Nanyang Technological University in 2019 and was awarded the NUS Research Scholarship to pursue her doctorate degree in Dr. Adrian Teo's laboratory. For her undergraduate thesis, she was working on uncovering the role of the diabetes-associated transcription factor HNF1A on the kidney. 

Having had research experiences from various fields such as cancer, neuroscience and stem cells, Claire is passionate about research and hopes that her research will contribute to the healthcare industry.

Apart from research, Claire enjoys reading, running, cooking and learning new skills.


Wei Xuan is a PhD student in the Stem Cells and Diabetes laboratory, under the supervision of Dr. Adrian Teo. He was awarded with the NUS Research Scholarship to pursue his PhD in Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, NUS. Wei Xuan graduated from NTU in 2019 with a Bachelor of Science (Honors) in Biological Sciences. He was a recipient of the A*STAR Undergraduate Scholarship (AUS) (full-time).

Recognizing that diabetes is one of the major health burdens in Singapore and many parts of the world, Wei Xuan is keen to uncover mechanisms of diabetes pathogenesis for better management of the disease. In addition, he likes to study stem cells and developmental biology, and is also fascinated by the vast potential of the CRISPR gene editing technology. Therefore, he is interested in utilizing CRISPR gene editing on hPSCs as one of the models to understand the effects of Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) risk-associated gene variants on human pancreatic beta-cell development and function. He hopes to identify genetic variants that increase a person’s susceptibility to T2D, which may allow better disease management strategies to be adopted.

Apart from research work, Wei Xuan is a huge fan of hiking and enjoys playing team sports such as water polo and football. 


Alvin is a research officer working in the Stem Cell and Diabetes laboratory in IMCB. He graduated from the National University of Singapore in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Life Sciences (Specialization in Biomedical Science) and a minor in Pharmaceutical Science. As an undergraduate, he embarked on a research project that focused on antibody generation and characterization under the supervision of Dr. Deron Raymond Herr. Currently, working in Dr. Adrian Teo's lab, Alvin is looking forward to continuously deepen his knowledge and positively contribute as much as possible in the elucidation of diabetes mechanism and potential treatments. His research interest aside, Alvin is also an avid jazz listener and takes relish in pleasant jam sessions, reading, biking, and learning new skills.


Lay Shuen obtained her B.Sc. (2nd Upper Honours) in Biological Sciences from Nanyang Technological University in June 2020. Her undergraduate research experiences include spending eight months as a research intern in Dr. Giulia Rancati’s laboratory (IMB, A*STAR) and working on her undergraduate thesis pertaining to the characterization of the effects of a novel antimalarial compound on human malaria in Dr. Li Hoi Yeung’s laboratory (NTU). Upon graduation, Lay Shuen began working as a research officer in Dr Adrian Teo’s Stem Cells and Diabetes laboratory (IMCB, A*STAR).

In Singapore, the prevalence of diabetes is alarming and accounts for 10% of the nation’s disease burden. The population of diabetic Singapore residents is predicted to increase from 440,000 in 2014 to 1million by 2050, making it a top national health concern. Lay Shuen hopes that her research efforts in Dr Adrian’s Teo’s laboratory can contribute to the better understanding and management of metabolic diseases.

Apart from conducting research, Lay Shuen enjoys running, travelling, writing and learning new languages.


  • Postdoctoral fellow - Joanita Jasmen 
  • Research officer - Chang Siang LIM

                                      - Chek Mei BOK 

  • ​Ph.D. students - Larry Sai Weng LOO (now Postdoc)

                                   - Thi Ha Linh NGUYEN (now Consultancy)

                                   - Shabrina AMIRRUDDIN (now Postdoc)

                                   - Blaise Su Jun LOW (now Medical writer)

  • NUS FYP students - Nicole Min Qian PEK (now Ph.D. student)

                                         - Daniel Aron ANG (now Ph.D. student)

                                         - Haja Shareef Mahina Azeem

                                           (now Medical student)

                                         - Jeryl Kar Loke TEO

    • NTU FYP students - Munirah SANTOSA (now Ph.D. student)

                                             - Gaytri GUPTA (now Medical student)

                                             - Jun Wei CHAN

                                             - Juin Ting CHEN

    • Medical student - Stephanie Fen Li LER

                                         - Elizabeth PHAN

    • NTU attachment students - Ahmad Suhaimi Bin Ahmad Ishak

                                                        - Balakumaran S/O Nadarajan

                                                          (now Ph.D. student)

                                                        - Liang Hui LOO

    • NYP FYP student - Ching Man LAM
    • RP attachment student - Lian Kwang TANG


    Adrian Teo Laboratory

    The Stem Cells and Diabetes Laboratory of Dr. Adrian Teo focuses on

    the use of stem cell technology to model human pancreas development and

    to study diabetes disease mechanisms.