Dr Kiwon Ban (潘基沅博士)

PhD (University of Toronto)

Assistant Professor

Dr Kiwon Ban

Contact Information

Office: 1B-205, 2/F, Block 1,
To Yuen Building
Phone: +852 3442-7477
Fax: +852 3442-0549
Email: Ban.KW@cityu.edu.hk
Web: CityU Scholars

Research Interests

  • Cardiovascular regeneration with human pluripotent stem cells
  • Generation of structurally and functionally mature cardiomyocytes derived from human pluripotent stem cells
  • Development of optimal strategies for transplanting human cardiomyocytes for cardiac regeneration
  • Understanding the pathophysiology of human heart disease


Emory University, Atlanta, USA Instructor Cardiac stem cell biology
Emory University, Atlanta, USA Post-doc Cardiac stem cell biology
University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada PhD Cardiovascular physiology
University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada MSc Cardiovascular physiology
Dongguk University, Seoul, Korea MSc Microbiology
Dongguk University, Seoul, Korea BSc Applied Biology

Selected Publications

  1. Ban K, Wile B, Cho KW, Kim S, Song MK, Kim SY, Singer J, Syed A, Yu SP, Wagner M, Bao G, and Yoon YS; Non-genetic purification of ventricular cardiomyocytes from differentiating embryonic stem cells through molecular beacons targeting a ventricle-specific transcription factor. Stem cell reports. 2015 Dec 8; 5(6):1239-49
  2. Wile B*, Ban K*, Yoon YS+, and Bao G+; Molecular beacon enabled purification of living cells by targeting cell-type specific mRNAs. Nature Protocols. 2014 Oct; 9(10):2411-2424 PMID: 25232937 (* and +: contributed equally)
  3. Ban K, HJ Park, Kim S, K Cho and Yoon YS; Cell therapy with embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes encapsulated in injectable nanomatrix gel enhances cell engraftment and promotes cardiac repair in experimental myocardial infarction. ACS Nano. 2014 Oct 28; 8(10):10815-10825 PMCID: PMC4212793.
  4. Ban K, Wile B, Kim S, Byun J, Saafir T, MK Song, sP Yu, Wagner M, Bao G and Yoon YS; Purification of cardiomyocytes from differentiating human pluripotent stem cells using molecular beacons targeting mRNA of a cardiomyocyte-specific gene. Circulation. 2013 Oct 28: 128(17) 1897-1909 PMCID: PMC3878656.
  5. Moon SH, Ban K, Kim C, Kim SS, Byun J, Song MK, Park IH, Yu SP, Yoon YS; Development of a novel two-dimensional directed differentiation system for generation of cardiomyocytes from human pluripotent stem cells. International Journal of Cardiology. 2013 Sep 20; 168(1):41-52A PMCID: PMC3556195.
  6. Ban K, Kim K, Cho CK, Sauvé M, Diamandis EF, Backx PH, Drucker DJ and Husain M; GLP-1(9-36)-mediated cytoprotection is blocked by exendin(9-39) yet does not require the known GLP-1 receptor. Endocrinology. 2010 Apr; 151(4):1520-31 PMID 20172966.
  7. Sauvé M, Ban K, Momen MA, Kabir M, Husain M and Drucker DJ; Genetic deletion or pharmacological inhibition of dipeptidyl peptidase-4 improves cardiovascular outcomes after myocardial infarction in mice. Diabetes. 2010 Apr; 59(4):1063-73 PMCID: PMC2844815.
  8. Ban K, Hui S, Drucker DJ, and Husain M; Cardiovascular effects of drugs commonly used for the treatment of diabetes: Do incretin-based therapeutics hold greater promise? Journal of the American Society of Hypertension. 2009 Aug; 3(4):245-259 PMID 20409967.
  9. Ban K, Cooper AJ, Samuel S, Bhatti A, Patel M, Izumo S, Penninger JM, Backx PH, Oudit GY, Tsushima RG; Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinase gamma is a critical mediator of myocardial ischemic and pharmacological preconditioning. Circulation research. 2008 Sep 12; 103(6):643-653 PMID 18688045.
  10. Ban K, Noyan-Ashraf MH, Hoefer J, Bolz SS, Drucker DJ, Husain M; Cardioprotective and vasodilatory actions of glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor are mediated through both glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor-dependent and -independent pathways. Circulation. 2008 May 6; 117(18):2340-2350 PMID 18427132.

Research Interests


Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the worldwide with the majority of fatalities due to coronary artery disease and correlating heart failure. Due to limited therapeutic options for severe myocardial infarction and advanced heart failure, stem cell-based therapy has emerged as a promising therapeutic option. Hence, the ultimate goal of our research group is to develop novel therapeutic applications for stem cell based cardiac regeneration using the cells differentiated from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) including both embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs).

In particular, we have been focused on studying cardiomyocytes (= Heart muscle cells) derived from (hPSCs) as they are regarded as one of the most promising sources for cardiac repair. Cardiomyocytes differentiated from hPSCs share many similar characteristics with human primary cardiomyocytes. They have unquestioned cardiomyogenic potential, and have a clear cardiac phenotype, cardiac-type electrophysiologic characteristics, and expression of expected genes and proteins. Several recent studies have shown that transplantation of these cardiomyocytes into rodent models helped preserve cardiac function.

Figure 1
Figure 1. Cardiomyocytes derived from pluripotent stem cells. A) Morphology of differentiated cardiomyocytes. B) Immunocytochemistry images on differentiated cardiomyocytes. C) Electrophysiological results of differentiated cardiomyocytes. D) Calcium imaging of differentiated cardiomyocytes.

To achieve this aim, we have been studying a wide variety of research areas including but not limited to cardiovascular physiology, pathophysiology, pharmacology, tissue engineering, biomaterials, and nanoscience.

Figure 2
Figure 2. A) One example strategy for improving the retention of implanted stem cell derived cardiomyocytes in heart through injectable self-assembling biomaterials. B) Engraftment of injected cardiomyocytes in hearts with or without biomaterials (4 & 14 weeks after injections).

We have ongoing research efforts aimed at:

  1. Generation of universal protocol that can efficiently produce large scale of CM derived from human PSCs
  2. Production of homogeneous population of functionally and structurally mature hPSC-derived cardiomyocytes
  3. Development of optimal strategies to increase the retention of transplanted human cardiomyocytes in the diseased heart
  4. Studying the pathophysiological mechanisms of human cardiac disease through hPSC derived cardiomyocytes

Available Position(s)

We are currently looking for highly motivated and focused candidates with expertise in cell biology, molecular biology, and physiology. If you are interested in joining our research group, please send your CV to Dr Ban.