Professor Albert Ong DM MA FRCP
Professor of Renal Medicine
Department of Infection Immunity & Cardiovascular Disease
University of Sheffield
Beech Hill Road
Tel: +44 (0)114 215 9542
Fax: +44 (0)114 271 1863
Albert Ong is Professor of Renal Medicine, Head of Academic Nephrology and Academic Programme Director for Renal Medicine at the University of Sheffield. Born in Malaysia, he was educated at the University of Oxford where he received his undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral degrees. While completing higher specialist training in nephrology at University College London and Oxford, he held research positions both at UCL (Lecturer, Rayne Institute) and Oxford (Kidney Research UK Senior Research Fellow, Harris lab, Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine). After moving to Sheffield, he was awarded a Wellcome Trust Research Leave Fellowship to establish an independent research programme on ADPKD. His research efforts have focussed on genetic, cellular and molecular approaches to investigate tubular cell function, drug discovery and translational medicine for rare kidney diseases especially in ADPKD. He was the main clinical expert to the NICE appraisal panel for the use of Tolvaptan in ADPKD and chaired the Renal Association Working Group which developed the first clinical guidance for its adoption and use in the UK. He is Chief Investigator of the CYSTic consortium and serves on several editorial boards, steering groups and scientific advisory committees including the ERA-EDTA Scientific Advisory Board and the Mayo Clinic Translational PKD Centre (USA).
Our major research goals have been to define the molecular basis of autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD), discover, develop and test new treatments and to improve the patient care pathway. We have defined the critical molecular interactions necessary for the formation, trafficking, regulation and function of the polycystin-1/polycystin-2 ADPKD protein complex and have identified several key changes in cell function and signalling resulting from the disease phenotype. These findings are being used to develop new therapeutic approaches in experimental models to inhibit cyst formation or expansion with the ultimate goal of clinical translation.
The clinical research programme has focussed on improving the patient pathway for patients and families with ADPKD. I am a founding member of the European ADPKD Forum which seeks to improve the multidisciplinary care for ADPKD patients across Europe through the adoption of agreed standards and an accepted patient care pathway. Among several initiatives, we established the first UKGTN-approved comprehensive genetic diagnostic service for PKD1 and PKD2 in collaboration with the Sheffield Genetic Diagnostic Service in 2009 which has developed into an internationally used NGS panel for cystic diseases. We are an integral part of the Yorkshire and Humber Genome Medicine Centre (GMC) and the UK Renal GeCIP investigating genetic causes of rare kidney diseases as part of the 100,000 Genomes Project. We have also developed a new genetic psychosocial risk instrument for PKD (GPRI-PKD) and a semi-automated method for measuring total kidney volume from MRI (Sheffield TKV Tool).
I am committed to the development of the next generation of clinical and non-clinical renal scientists and to postgraduate nephrology education especially in the area of inherited kidney diseases. I am Academic Programme Director for Nephrology at Sheffield and previously served as a Board member of the EU FP7 TRANCYST initial training network and the ERA-EDTA Working Group on Inherited Kidney Diseases (WGIKD).
My wider educational interests concern the support and advancement of nephrology in the developing world. I am a member of the ISN Fellowship Committee and was previously Chair of the Renal Association International Committee (2009-2013). I have hosted an ISN Sister Centre, several International Society of Nephrology (ISN) fellows and am an ISN Educational Ambassador.
National and International Committees
- CYSTic Consortium – Chief Investigator.
- UK Kidney Research Consortium (UKKRC) Clinical Study Group on Cystic Kidney Diseases - Chair (2009-2014), Deputy Chair (2014-present).
- ADPKD in Europe Consortium - Co-chair.
- European ADPKD Forum – Faculty member.
- ISN Fellowship committee.
- Renal Association International Committee - Chair (2009-2013), Committee member.
- Editor, Nature Scientific Reports.
- Theme Editor, Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation.
- Review Editor, Frontiers in Pharmacology.
- Faculty of 1000 Medicine, Nephrology faculty.
- Subject Editor, Nephrology.
- Deputy Editor, Nephron Clinical Practice (2008-2012).
- Associate Editor, BMC Nephrology (2008-2012).
- ERA-EDTA Scientific Advisory Board.
- Mayo Translational PKD Centre, Mayo Clinic, Rochester - External Faculty.
- National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) Technology Appraisal of Tolvaptan for ADPKD - Nominated Clinical Expert (2013-2015).
- Renal Genomic England Clinical Interpretation Partnership (GeCIP) – Co-chair for Cystic Diseases.
- Federation of European Associations of Patients Affected by Genetic Diseases (FEDERG) - Scientific Council.
- UK Chinese Life Scientists Society – Fellow.
National and International Guidelines
- Standardised Outcomes in Nephrology –PKD (SONG-PKD) – Steering committee.
- PKD Outcomes Consortium (PKDOC) – Committee.
- Renal Association Working Group for Tolvaptan in ADPKD – Chair.
- ERA-EDTA Guidance for Tolvaptan in ADPKD – Committee.
- KDIGO Controversies Conference on ADPKD – Invited participant and discussant (2014).
Major research themes
- Understanding the molecular basis of polycystic kidney disease.
- Identifying new therapeutic targets for ADPKD in experimental models.
- Improving diagnosis, prognosis and clinical outcomes in ADPKD.
For key publications see below. For a full list of publications click here.
- Omar F, Findlay JE, Carfray G, Allcock RW, Jiang Z, Moore C, Muir AL, Lannoy M, Fertig BA, Mai D , Day JP et al (2019) Small-molecule allosteric activators of PDE4 long form cyclic AMP phosphodiesterases.. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 116(27), 13320-13329.
- Tam FWK & Ong ACM (2019) Renal monocyte chemoattractant protein-1: an emerging universal biomarker and therapeutic target for kidney diseases?. Nephrology,Dialysis and Transplantation. View this article in WRRO
- Simms RJ, Doshi T, Metherall P, Ryan D, Wright P, Gruel N, van Gastel MDA, Gansevoort RT, Tindale W & Ong ACM (2019) A rapid high-performance semi-automated tool to measure total kidney volume from MRI in autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease. European Radiology, 1-10. View this article in WRRO
- Harris T, Sandford R, De Coninck B, Devuyst O, Drenth JPH, Ecder T, Kent A, Gansevoort RT, Górriz JL, Ong ACM , Pirson Y et al (2018) European ADPKD Forum multidisciplinary position statement on autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease care: European ADPKD Forum and Multispecialist Roundtable participants. Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation, 33(4), 563-573. View this article in WRRO
- Ong ACM (2018) Polycystic kidney disease: Tolvaptan slows disease progression in late-stage ADPKD. Nature Reviews Nephrology, 14(3), 146.
- Feng S, Streets AJ, Nesin V, Tran U, Nie H, Onopiuk M, Wessely O, Tsiokas L & Ong A (2017) The Sorting Nexin 3 Retromer Pathway Regulates the Cell Surface Localization and Activity of a Wnt-Activated Polycystin Channel Complex. Journal of the American Society of Nephrology : JASN, 28(10), 2973-2984.
- Chang M-Y & C.M. Ong A (2017) Targeting new cellular disease pathways in autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease. Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation.
- Ong ACM (2017) Making sense of polycystic kidney disease. The Lancet, 389(10081), 1780-1782.
- Streets AJ, Magayr TA, Huang L, Vergoz L, Rossetti S, Simms RJ, Harris PC, Peters DJM & Ong ACM (2017) Parallel microarray profiling identifies ErbB4 as a determinant of cyst growth in ADPKD and a prognostic biomarker for disease progression. American Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology, 312(4), F577-F588. View this article in WRRO
- Xu Y, Streets AJ, Hounslow AM, Tran U, Jean-Alphonse F, Needham AJ, Vilardaga J-P, Wessely O, Williamson MP & Ong ACM (2016) The Polycystin-1, Lipoxygenase, and α-Toxin Domain Regulates Polycystin-1 Trafficking. Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, 27(4), 1159-1173.
- Ong ACM & Harris PC (2015) A polycystin-centric view of cyst formation and disease: the polycystins revisited. Kidney International, 88(4), 699-710. View this article in WRRO
- Ong ACM, Devuyst O, Knebelmann B, Walz G & Diseases ERA-EDTAWGFIK (2015) Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease: the changing face of clinical management. The Lancet, 385(9981), 1993-2002.
- Chang MY & Ong ACM (2013) New treatments for autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 76(4), 524-535.
- Streets AJ, Wessely O, Peters DJM & Ong ACM (2013) Hyperphosphorylation of polycystin-2 at a critical residue in disease reveals an essential role for polycystin-1-regulated dephosphorylation.. Hum Mol Genet, 22(10), 1924-1939.
- Giamarchi A, Feng S, Rodat-Despoix L, Xu YX, Bubenshchikova E, Newby LJ, Hao JZ, Gaudioso C, Crest M, Lupas AN , Honore E et al (2010) A polycystin-2 (TRPP2) dimerization domain essential for the function of heteromeric polycystin complexes. EMBO J, 29(7), 1176-1191.
- Ong ACM & Wheatley DN (2003) Polycystic kidney disease--the ciliary connection.. Lancet, 361(9359), 774-776.
- Newby LJ, Streets AJ, Zhao Y, Harris PC, Ward CJ & Ong ACM (2002) Identification, characterization, and localization of a novel kidney polycystin-1-polycystin-2 complex.. J Biol Chem, 277(23), 20763-20773. View this article in WRRO
- Ong AC, Harris PC, Davies DR, Pritchard L, Rossetti S, Biddolph S, Vaux DJ, Migone N & Ward CJ (1999) Polycystin-1 expression in PKD1, early-onset PKD1, and TSC2/PKD1 cystic tissue.. Kidney Int, 56(4), 1324-1333.
- Ong AC, Ward CJ, Butler RJ, Biddolph S, Bowker C, Torra R, Pei Y & Harris PC (1999) Coordinate expression of the autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease proteins, polycystin-2 and polycystin-1, in normal and cystic tissue.. Am J Pathol, 154(6), 1721-1729.
- Ward CJ, Turley H, Ong AC, Comley M, Biddolph S, Chetty R, Ratcliffe PJ, Gattner K & Harris PC (1996) Polycystin, the polycystic kidney disease 1 protein, is expressed by epithelial cells in fetal, adult, and polycystic kidney.. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 93(4), 1524-1528.