Banner Image for Directory


Tan Eng King


Programme Director, Pre - Clinician Scientist Residency Preceptorship Programme (PCSRPP)

Deputy Chair (Academic Affairs), Neuroscience Academic Clinical Programme


Education Qualifications: MBBS, MRCP(UK), FRCP(Edin), FAMS(Neurology)         

Professor Tan is an editor of European Journal of Neurology, and Parkinson’s disease Journal and has served in various committees in the International Movement Disorders Society (MDS) and a founding member of the MDS Asian Oceanic Section.

His clinical interest is in the care of patients with neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor and other related disorders. He also runs a botulinum toxin clinics managing patients with various neurological disorders including migraines, dystonias, spasticity, facial spasm, etc


Professional Appointments and Committee Memberships:

  • Senior Consultant, Department of Neurology, Singapore General Hospital
  • Director (Research), National Neuroscience Institute
  • Deputy Medical Director (Academic Affairs), National Neuroscience Institute
  • Associate Designated Institution Official (ADIO), Singhealth Residency
  • Vice Chair, Neuroscience Academic Clinical Programme
  • Professor, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, NUS
  • Honorary Professor, Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine
  • Co Director, USA National Parkinson Foundation Center of Excellence
  • Guest Professor, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China
  • Honorary Secretary, Clinical Neuroscience Society of Singapore, (2004-present)
  • Chairman, Ministry of Health Accreditation of Mentors, Research Units, (2011 – present)
  • Member, Congress Scientific Program Committee, International Movement Disorders Society, (2012 – present)
  • Member, NMRC Awards organising committee, (2014 – present)
  • Member, Genome Institute of Singapore Platform Oversight Committee, (2015 – present)
  • Member, National Health and Biomedical Sciences Open Fund Sub Committee, (2015 – present)
  • Clinical Advisory Committee, MOH Chronic Disease Management Programme, (2016 – 2019)
  • Chairman, National Neuroscience and Sensory Disorders Task Force, (2016 – present)
  • Chairman, NMRC ASTAR Bench and Bedside Review Panel, (2016 – present)
  • Co-chairman, Open Fund IRG Panel, (2016-present)
  • Vice-Chairman SAB Research Committee, (2015-present)
  • Chairman Research Training Review Panel, MOH, (2016-present)
  • Associate Designated Institutional Official, Singhealth Residency, (2014-present)
  • Co-chairman, NMRC Research Training Review Panel, (2015-present)


  • President Science Team Award (Leader) (2018)
  • David Marsden Lectureship Award (2018)
  • STaR Investigator Award (2018)
  • AOS Ambassador for the 3rd Taiwan International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders, International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society (2016)
  • SingHealth Duke-NUS Research Team Award, 1st Prize, (2017)
  • Distinguished Member, Japanese Society of Neurology (2016)
  • Yoshikuni Mizuno Award, International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society – Asian and Oceanian Section (MDS-AOS) (2016)
  • SingHealth Distinguished Team award (2015)
  • STaR Investigator award (2014)
  • SingHealth Distinguished Researcher Award (2011)
  • National Outstanding Clinician Scientist Award (2011)
  • Singapore General Hospital Service Quality Excellence Award (2010)
  • Elected Member, American Neurological Association, (2010)
  • Duke NUS Khoo Investigator Excellence Award (2008)
  • National Medical Research Council Clinician Scientist Award (2008)
  • National Medical Research Council and Biomedical Research Council Clinician Scientist Award (2005)
  • SingHealth Excellent Researcher Award (2005)
  • Singapore General Hospital Clinician Scientist Award (2002)
  • Singapore General Hospital Excellent Publication Award (Gold) (2001)
  • Ministry of Health HMDP clinical fellowship Award in Parkinson’s disease and Movement Disorders (1998/1999)
  • National Medical Research Council-Singapore Totalisator Board Medical Research Fellowship Award in Neurogenetics (1999)
  • Commendation for outstanding performance, Baylor College of Medicine, USA (1999)

Leadership positions / roles in Education: 

  • Programme Director, Pre - Clinician Scientist Residency Preceptorship Programme (PCSRPP)
Dr Tan leads a consortium in translational clinical research in Parkinson’s disease and related neurodegenerative disorders. PD is the most common neurodegenerative condition seen at the National Neuroscience Institute and is the main neurodegenerative condition where significant impact on patients’ quality of life can be achieved with improved care. Dr Tan’s group is involved in the identification of genes involved in PD and related degenerative diseases with a focus on whole-genome and exome analysis and massive parallel sequencing. Building on these potential genetic discoveries, his group investigates the interaction of the various molecular pathways using different in vitro and in vivo models (Mouse, Drosophila, Zebra Fish), with the aim at identifying early markers and to explore potential therapeutic interventions through the selection of viable targets. The program involves participation from many local and international research and clinical institutions and pharmaceutical companies. The team is also involved in various pharmaceutical drug trials.

An Integrated GWAS and Whole Genome Exome and Sequencing Analysis

While exome coding variants have an important role, the analysis of exome coding variants might not capture the non-coding regulatory risk-association variants. Genome wide association (GWAS) is effective in identifying the regulatory risk variants, but will miss the coding risk variants due to their rarity. We are conducting an integrated GWAS and exome coding variant analysis to further dissect and identify genetic risk factors and their functional significance in PD patients.

Development of Novel Behavioural tests in Parkinsonian Mouse Models

In clinical studies his group found that non motor symptoms (behavioral, autonomic etc) are common in PD patients. The exact relationship and interaction between non-motor and motor domains is unclear. They are investigating the link between motor and non-motor traits in the transgenic mice and aim to develop new behavioral tests that can best capture the whole spectrum of non motor abnormalities observed in PD patients.

Drug Testing and Discovery in Neurodegenerative diseases

His group focuses on identification of substrates and interacting partners of proteins encoded by disease causing genes in PD, including PINK1 and LRRK2. Using the in vivo models that they have developed, they aim to utilize contemporary genetics/genomics and other technological platforms to identify disease pathways, cellular processes and drug targets. Working with pharmaceutical companies, they are testing potential therapeutic agents/compounds in their animal models.

Research Interests: Clinical and neuroimaging studies, functional genomics and experimental therapeutics in Movement Disorders.

Selected Publications:

  1. Ranjan VD, Qiu L, Lee JW, Chen X, Jang SE, Chai C, Lim KL, Tan EK, Zhang Y, Huang WM, Zeng L. A microfiber scaffold-based 3D in vitro human neuronal culture model of Alzheimer's disease. Biomater Sci. 2020 Sep 7;8(17):4861-4874. doi: 10.1039/d0bm00833h.
  2. Ng ASL, Xu Z, Chen Z, Tan YJ, Lim WK, Ting SKS, Yu WY, Cheng QH, Foo JN, Tan EK, Lim TCC. NOTCH2NLC-linked neuronal intranuclear inclusion body disease and fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome. Brain. 2020 Aug 1;143(8):e69. doi: 10.1093/brain/awaa210.
  3. Wang T, Yuan F, Chen Z, Zhu S, Chang Z, Yang W, Deng B, Que R, Cao P, Chao Y, Chan L, Pan Y, Wang Y, Xu L, Lyu Q, Chan P, Yenari MA, Tan EK, Wang Q. Vascular, inflammatory and metabolic risk factors in relation to dementia in Parkinson's disease patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Aging (Albany NY). 2020 Aug 15;12(15):15682-15704. doi: 10.18632/aging.103776.
  4. Ma D, Tan YJ, Ng ASL, Ong HL, Sim W, Lim WK, Teo JX, Ng EYL, Lim EC, Lim EW, Chan LL, Tan LCS, Yi Z, Tan EK. Association of NOTCH2NLC Repeat Expansions With Parkinson Disease. JAMA Neurol. 2020 Aug 24:e203023. doi: 10.1001/jamaneurol.2020.3023. Online ahead of print.
  5. Koh YH, Shih YC, Lim SL, Kiew YS, Lim EW, Ng SM, Ooi LQR, Tan WQ, Chung YC, Rumpel H, Tan EK, Chan LL. Evaluation of trigeminal nerve tractography using two-fold-accelerated simultaneous multi-slice readout-segmented echo planar diffusion tensor imaging. Eur Radiol. 2020 Sep 1. doi: 10.1007/s00330-020-07193-x. Online ahead of print.
  6. Tan EK, Albanese A, Chaudhuri KR, Opal P, Wu YC, Chan CH, Jeon B, Truong D, Poewe W, Tan L, Pal P, Colosimo C, Lim SY, Jinnah HA, Cardoso F. Neurological research & training after the easing of lockdown in countries impacted by COVID-19. J Neurol Sci. 2020 Nov 15;418:117105. doi: 10.1016/j.jns.2020.117105.
  7. Chao YX, Gulam MY, Chia NSJ, Feng L, Rotzschke O, Tan EK. Gut-Brain Axis: Potential Factors Involved in the Pathogenesis of Parkinson's Disease. Front Neurol. 2020 Aug 25;11:849. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2020.00849.
  8. Chua LL, Ho P, Toh J, Tan EK. Chetomin rescues pathogenic phenotype of LRRK2 mutation in drosophila. Aging (Albany NY). 2020 Sep 24;12(18):18561-18570. doi: 10.18632/aging.103843. Online ahead of print.
  9. Li WS, Heng DL, Chia TH, Lim EC, Tan EK. High Outpatient Attendance During COVID-19 Lockdown When Patients Were Given the Option to Return. Mov Disord. 2020 Oct 9:10.1002/mds.28350. doi: 10.1002/mds.28350. Online ahead of print.
  10. Tan EK, Albanese A, Chaudhuri K, Lim SY, Oey NE, Shan Chan CH, Wu YC, Jeon B, Truong D, Poewe W, Pal PK, Tan L, Opal P, Colosimo C, Jinnah HA, Cardoso F. Adapting to post-COVID19 research in Parkinson's disease: Lessons from a multinational experience. Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2020 Oct 7:S1353-8020(20)30780-X. doi: 10.1016/j.parkreldis.2020.10.009. Online ahead of print.
  11. Gao X, Huang Z, Feng C, Guan C, Li R, Xie H, Chen J, Li M, Que R, Deng B, Cao P, Li M, Lu J, Huang Y, Li M, Yang W, Yang X, Wen C, Liang X, Yang Q, Chao YX, Chan LL, Yenari MA, Jin K, Chaudhuri KR, Zhang J, Tan EK, Wang Q. Multimodal analysis of gene expression from postmortem brains and blood identifies synaptic vesicle trafficking genes to be associated with Parkinson's disease. Brief Bioinform. 2020 Oct 20:bbaa244. doi: 10.1093/bib/bbaa244. Online ahead of print.
  12. Yong AC, Tan YJ, Zhao Y, Lu Z, Ng EY, Ng SY, Chia NS, Choi X, Heng D, Neo S, Xu Z, Tay KY, Au WL, Tan EK, Tan LC, Ng AS. SNCA Rep1 microsatellite length influences non-motor symptoms in early Parkinson's disease. Aging (Albany NY). 2020 Oct 20;12(20):20880-20887. doi: 10.18632/aging.104111.
  13. Gosavi TD, Koh JS, Rosman M, Prasad K, Doshi K, Lim ES, Saffari SE, Goh SK, Ong HS, Chan CY, De Silva DA, Tan EK. Psychological impact of isolation due to COVID-19 among young and fit dormitory residents. Psychol Med. 2020 Oct 26:1-2. doi: 10.1017/S0033291720004274. Online ahead of print.
  14. Liu W, Kang R, Lim KL, Tan EK. Complete Genome Sequence of Serratia marcescens FY, Isolated from Drosophila melanogaster. Microbiol Resour Announc. 2020 Nov 5;9(45):e00755-20. doi: 10.1128/MRA.00755-20.
  15. Tseng FS, Deng X, Ong YL, Li HH, Tan EK. Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) and smoking: a meta-analysis and mechanistic insights. Aging (Albany NY). 2020 Nov 7;12(21):21959-21970. doi: 10.18632/aging.104021.
  16. Jang SE, Qiu L, Chan LL, Tan EK, Zeng L. Current Status of Stem Cell-Derived Therapies for Parkinson's Disease: From Cell Assessment and Imaging Modalities to Clinical Trials. Front Neurosci. 2020 Oct 16;14:558532. doi: 10.3389/fnins.2020.558532.
  17. Chao YX, Lee B, Ng EY, Lian MM, Chew EGY, Tandiono M, Li Z, Khor CC, Kumar P, Tan LCS, Foo JN, Tan EK. Association analysis of PSAP variants in Parkinson's disease patients. Brain. 2020 Nov 22:awaa358. doi: 10.1093/brain/awaa358. Online ahead of print.
  18. Chua CY, Koh MRE, Chia NS, Ng SY, Saffari SE, Wen MC, Chen RY, Choi X, Heng DL, Neo SX, Tay KY, Au WL, Tan EK, Tan LC, Xu Z. Subjective cognitive Complaints in early Parkinson's disease patients with normal cognition are associated with affective symptoms. Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2020 Nov 17;82:24-28. doi: 10.1016/j.parkreldis.2020.11.013. Online ahead of print.
  19. Vanan S, Zeng X, Chia SY, Varnäs K, Jiang M, Zhang K, Saw WT, Padmanabhan P, Yu WP, Zhou ZD, Halldin C, Gulyás B, Tan EK, Zeng L. Altered striatal dopamine levels in Parkinson's disease VPS35 D620N mutant transgenic aged mice. Mol Brain. 2020 Dec 1;13(1):164. doi: 10.1186/s13041-020-00704-3.
  20. Tan JSY, Chao YX, Rötzschke O, Tan EK. New Insights into Immune-Mediated Mechanisms in Parkinson's Disease. Int J Mol Sci. 2020 Dec 6;21(23):E9302. doi: 10.3390/ijms21239302.
  21. Deng X, Lo YL, Tan EK. Comparing COVID-19-linked neurological complications with other viral infections. J Transl Med. 2020 Dec 9;18(1):465. doi: 10.1186/s12967-020-02633-0.