Professor Albert Ong DM MA FRCP
Academic Unit of Nephrology
Department of Infection and Immunity
The University of Sheffield Medical School
Beech Hill Road
Tel: +44 (0)114 271 3402
Fax:: +44 (0)114 271 1711
Secretary: Ms Jean Lazenby
Tel: +44 (0)114 271 2237
Fax: +44 (0)114 271 3892
I am Professor of Renal Medicine and Head of the Academic Unit of Nephrology at the University of Sheffield. After graduating in medicine from the University of Oxford, I underwent postgraduate clinical training in medicine and nephrology at University College London and Oxford. My research career started as a Clinical Lecturer at the Department of Medicine at UCL. I was then awarded a Kidney Research UK Senior Research Fellowship to work under the mentorship of Dr Peter Harris and Sir David Weatherall at the MRC Molecular Haematology Unit, Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, Oxford.
I received the AEG Raine and CM Lockwood awards from the Renal Association (UK) and a personal Research Leave Fellowship from the Wellcome Trust. I have published over 80 original papers and book chapters in leading journals such as the Lancet, BMJ, PNAS and the EMBO Journal. My research interests are in the impact of the new genetics on kidney disease and in the genetic basis of cystic kidney disease.
I lead the Kidney Genetics Group at the University of Sheffield. Its major research interests are in the molecular genetics, cell biology and pathogenesis of autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD). In particular, we aim to discover new treatments for ADPKD, to understand better how cysts form and grow in the ADPKD kidney and to improve the clinical management of ADPKD patients.
ADPKD is one of the most common monogenic human diseases known and affects around 1 in 500 people. It is caused by mutations in two genes, PKD1 and PKD2. ADPKD accounts for ~10% of patients with kidney failure in most renal units and affects up to 10 million people worldwide. It is also a major cause of sudden death and disability in younger patients due to intracranial aneurysm rupture.
My educational interests concern the support and development of nephrology in the developing world. I chair the International Committee of the Renal Association and am an Educational Ambassador of the International Society of Nephrology.
- Chair, Renal Association International Committee.
- Chair, UK Kidney Research Consortium (UKKRC) Clinical Study Group on Cystic Kidney Diseases.
- Co-chair, EU PKD Consortium.
- Board member, ERA/EDTA Working Group on Inherited Kidney Diseases (WGIKD)
- Deputy Editor, Nephron Clinical Practice.
- Associate Editor, BMC Nephrology.
- Faculty of 1000 Medicine, Nephrology.
We have taken several experimental approaches to studying ADPKD including:
- Investigating structure-function relationships of the ADPKD proteins, polycystin-1 and polycystin-2.
- The role of post-translational modification in regulating polycystin protein function.
- Using experimental models to understand the natural history of disease and to test novel compounds.
- Pathogenesis of the cardiovascular phenotype in ADPKD.
- Clinical, genetic and epigenetic factors determining renal disease progression in ADPKD patients.
We have a number of active international collaborations. Our work is currently supported by the Wellcome Trust, the Medical Research Council, Research Councils (UK), Kidney Research UK, the Polycystic Kidney disease foundation (USA), the Sheffield Kidney Research Foundation (SKRF), The Sheffield Area Kidney Patients Association (SAKA) and the Polycystic Kidney Disease Charity (UK).
Selected recent publications
- Feng S, Rodat-Despoix L, Delmas P, Ong ACM – A single amino acid residue constitutes the third dimerisation domain essential for the assembly and function of the tetrameric polycystin-2 (TRPP2) channel – Journal of Biological Chemistry 2011; 286: 18994-19000.
- Streets AJ, Needham, AJ, Gill, SK, Ong ACM – Protein Kinase D mediated phosphorylation of polycystin-2 (TRPP2) is essential for its effects on cell growth and channel activity – Molecular Biology of the Cell 2010; 21: 3853-3865
- Giamarchi A, Feng S, Rodat-Despoix L, Xu Y, Bubenshchikova E, Newby LJ, Hao J, Gaudioso C, Crest M, Lupas AN, Honore E, Williamson MP, Obara T, Ong ACM*, Delmas P* (*joint corresponding authors) - A polycystin-2 dimerization domain essential for the function of heteromeric polycystin complexes - EMBO Journal 2010; 29:1176-1191.
- Yong Y, Ulbrich MH, Li M-H, Buraei Z, Chen X-Z, Ong ACM, Tong L, Isacoff EY and Yang J – Structural and molecular basis of the assembly of the TRPP2/PKD1 complex - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 2009; 106: 11558-11563.
- Ong ACM – Screening for intracranial aneurysms in ADPKD – British Medical Journal 2009; 339: b3763.
- Prasad S, McDaid JP, Tam FWK, Haylor JL, Ong ACM – Pkd2 dosage influences cellular repair responses following ischaemia-reperfusion injury – American Journal of Pathology 2009; 175:1493-1503.
- Streets AJ, Wagner B, Harris PC, Ward CJ, Ong ACM – Homophilic and heterophilic polycystin-1 interactions regulate E-cadherin recruitment and junction assembly in MDCK cells - Journal of Cell Science 2009; 122: 1410-1417.
- Feng S, Okenka GM, Bai C-X, Streets AJ, Newby LJ, DeChant BT, Tsiokas L, Obara T, Ong ACM – Identification and functional characterisation of an N-terminal oligomerisation domain for polycystin-2 – Journal of Biological Chemistry 2008: 283: 28471-28479.
- Bai C, Kim S, Li W, Streets AJ, Ong ACM, Tsiokas L – Activation of TRPP2 through mDia1-dependent voltage gating – EMBO Journal 2008; 27: 1345-1356.