Nicole Pek


'Best Oral Presentation First Prize' in the 7th Biochemistry Student Symposium (NUS)

Diabetes Facts


The Straits Times reported the following on 20th August 2017


  • 11 % of Singaporeans are diabetic
  • Another 12 to 15 % suffer from pre-diabetes. Of them, one in three will become diabetic within eight years
  • The number of diabetics under 70 in Singapore is expected to rise to 670,000 by 2030 and to one million by 2050
  • Diabetes costs Singapore $1 billion a year and the figure is expected to climb to $1.8 billion by 2050
  • The incidence of diabetes is highest among Indians, with 17.2 % of adults affected. This is followed by Malays (16.6 %) and Chinese (9.7 %)
  • Half of those who have a heart attack; two in five victims of stroke, and two in three with kidney failure in Singapore are also diabetic
  • Every day, four amputations are the result of uncontrolled diabetes


The Straits Times reported the following on 8th April 2016


  •  Singapore is No. 2 nation with most diabetics


 The BBC News website reported the following on 8th April 2016


  • Gestational diabetes is common and affects up to 18 in every 100 pregnancies
  • Babies can be at higher risks of obesity and diabetes later in life
  • Women testing positive for gestational diabetes at 28-week stage were twice as likely as other mothers to have an abnormally large foetus.
  • Mothers who were obese as well as having gestational diabetes had five times the risk of a large foetus
  • Screening should take place at some point between 24 and 28 weeks, but in practice a lot screen at 28 weeks


The BBC News website reported the following on 6th April 2016


  • Diabetes cases had nearly quadrupled to 422 million in 2014 from 108 million in 1980
  • High blood sugar levels are a major killer – linked to 3.7 million deaths around the world each year
  • 8.5 % of adults worldwide has diabetes
  • 1.5 million people died as a result of diabetes in 2012
  • 2.2 million additional deaths were caused by higher-than-optimal blood glucose
  • 43 % of these 3.7 million people died before they were 70 years old
  • Diabetes triples the risk of a heart attack and leaves people 20 times more likely to have a leg amputated, as well as increasing the risk of stroke, kidney failure, blindness and complications in pregnancy
  • Diabetes itself is the eighth biggest killer in the world



THE STRAITS TIMES REPORTED THE FOLLOWING ON 22ND FEBRUARY 2016


  • 34 % of those aged 24 to 35 in 2016 may become diabetic by age 65
  • Diabetes rates have risen from 8.6 % in 1992 to 11.3 % in 2010.



The BBC News website reported the following on 17th August 2015


  • Diabetes cases soared by 60 %, from 2.1 million to more than 3.3 million people in the UK
  • Diabetes can lead to blindness and amputations, and is a massive drain on NHS resources.
  • Diabetes medication now accounts for 10 % of the NHS drugs bill
  • Nearly £869 million was spent on drugs including insulin and metformin as of 2015
  • Diabetes costs the NHS nearly £10 billion a year


The Straits Times reported the following on 24th May 2015:


  • Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is the top cause of blindness among working-age adults in Singapore, causing 
  • About 600 people to be totally blind
  • Over 8000 to lose their sight in one eye
  • 17500 to be visually impaired
  • Three in ten diabetics have diabetic retinopathy
  • Singapore has an estimated 600000 diabetics aged 18 to 69
  • About 180000 have the eye condition
  • Only 30000 have been diagnosed
  • 11 percent of diabetics and 83 percent of those with DR were undiagnosed.
  • Nine in ten of those who did not know they had DR were aware they were diabetic.
  • The incidence of both DR and the late-stage vision-threatening DR was highest among Indians
  • The World Diabetes Day is on the 14th November.
  • As of 2013, Singapore is ranked 10th in the world for the prevalence of impaired glucose tolerance (IGT), at 12.4 %.
  • Every 6 seconds, a person dies from diabetes.



The Straits Times reported the following on 24th February 2012:  


  • One in three Singaporeans will develop diabetes.   
  • 11.3 % of those aged 18 to 69 already had the disease in 2010.    
  • Diabetes is the top cause of blindness in Singapore.   
  • Diabetes is linked to two limb amputations a day.    
  • Diabetes is linked to 60 % of kidney failures. 
  • 46.4 % of people who had their first heart attacks in Singapore were diabetic.  



The Straits Times reported the following on 2nd October 2012:    


  • By 2050, Singapore may have as many as one million diabetics.   
  • Every one in two people, by age 70, will be diabetic.    
  • Aging and obesity are the two main factors that will drive Singapore’s number of diabetics up in the next 40 years.



Adrian Teo Laboratory

Stem Cells and Diabetes Information ​ ·     


  • International Society for Stem Cell Research ·        
  • Stem Cell Society Singapore ·         
  • The World Diabetes Day is on the 14th November. ·         
  • American Diabetes Association ​·         
  • JDRF ·         
  • European Association for the Study of Diabetes ·         
  • Diabetes UK

AT lab would like to congratulate the following members for their various awards and achievements:


Adrian Teo @ Interstellar Initiative - outstanding team contribution award


The Interstellar Initiative — presented jointly by the Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development and the New York Academy of Sciences — will recognize the world's most promising Early Career Investigators (ECIs) in the fields of cancer, regenerative medicine, and neuroscience. Individuals accepted into the Interstellar Initiative will participate in a three-day conference at the New York Academy of Sciences from March 17–19, 2017, where they will be grouped within teams of three and asked to propose a solution to a major research question, guided by mentors who are at the peak of their respective disciplines.

AWARDS AND stem cell and diabetes facts & Media

Larry Loo


A*STAR Graduate Scholarship 2015

A*STAR-P&G 1st Singapore Biotechnology Young Entrepreneur Scheme (YES) Competition 2016 – Most Original Idea Prize Featured on A*STAR social media (https://www.facebook.com/HQastar/videos/1403231686395385/?pnref=story)


NTU-Quintiles Challenge 2016 – Predicting Patients’ quality risk - 1st Prize Featured on Biotechin.asia social media https://biotechin.asia/2016/11/10/singapore-is-seeing-a-rise-in-entrepreneurship-competitions-for-researchers-in-the-lifesciences-sector/


Selected as one of the 100 leaders of tomorrow (LoT) from around the world to participate in the Global Biotech Revolution GapSummit 2017 held in Washington D.C (Team Digi-ease - Finalist in Idea Challenge) http://www.globalbiotechrevolution.com/events/gapsummit-2017/idea-challenge/



INSIDE JOSLIN- VIDEO AND BLOG ENTRY

http://blog.joslin.org/2014/04/making-beta-cells/