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Research

Priority Lines of Research


Despite all of the objectives the ECB group (outlined above) are very important, but the priority will be given to the projects that we have funds or those we expect to get good funds within the coming few months. Accordingly, priority of the research group will be:

  1. Establishing a molecular physiology lab that could help in defining candidate genes and their metabolites (e.g., osmolytes, phytohormones, antioxidants, etc) that help plants to tolerate the very harsh conditions of the UAE deserts. Priority will be given to the facultative halophytes unique to UAE stress conditions. These halophytes are known for their normal growth in both saline and non-saline habitats. These group should have a set of genes that turned on/off, based on salinity levels. Using these plants will help in defining candidate genes that could tolerate both the salt and draught not only for UAE but also globally.

  2. Identification of unique short DNA sequence that can be used for barcoding all native plants to UAE which will help in their taxonomic classification and determination of exogenous and allied plants to UAE.

  3. Establishing of a pollen grains bank, a palynological Atlas, a pollen calendar for Sharjah Emirate and link the changes in pollen types and density with pollen allergenicity

  4. Using native plants in landscaping the UAE cities

  5. Identifying and assessing the 'Ecosystem function' roles of potential natural engineer plants that could be used in combating desertification and rehabilitation/restoration of degraded desert ecosystems. 

  6. Exploring and utilizing the economic potentially important natural products of native plants

  7. Determination of the most important active chemical/biochemical constituents in native plants, environmental factors affecting such constituents and their possible impact on the plant host, ecosystem and our life including their medicinal uses.

  8. Studying foliar trichomes of selected medicinal plants and identify their secreted substances and their biological activities.

  9. Assessing and conserving the plant diversity in the UAE. Special priority will be given to conservation of fragile habitats, threatened and endangered plants and keystone trees.


    On-Going Research Projects

    1.    Title: Assessment of Forage Productivity and Carrying Capacity of Dubai Deserts rangelands: Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve as a case study "Phase 2". (AED 160,000).

    Principal Investigator: Ali El-Keblawy

    Sponsor: National Research Foundation, UAE

     

    2.    Title: Assessment of Forage Productivity and Carrying Capacity of Dubai Deserts rangelands: Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve as a case study "Phase 1". (AED 173,000).

    Principal Investigator: Ali El-Keblawy

    Sponsor: National Research Foundation, UAE

     

    3.    Title: Population structure, reproduction and sustainable management of the ghaf tree (Prosopis cineraria) in the UAE",  (AED 200,000).

    Principal Co-Investigator: Ali El-Keblawy

    Sponsor: National Research Foundation, UAE

     

    4.    Title:  Ecological Studies and Seed Oil Composition of the Indigenous Moringa peregrina: Toward Conservation and Economic Use of UAE plants, (AED 160,000)

    Principal Investigator: Ali El-Keblawy

    Sponsor: Emirates Foundation, Abu Dhabi, UAE

     

    5.    Title:  Transcriptomics and Metabolomics analysis to Reveal Salt and Heat Stress Related Genes, Phytohormones, and Osmolytes in Facultative Halophytes plant of the UAE (AED 196,000)

    Principal Investigator: Kareem A. Mosa

    Principal Co-Investigators: Ali El-Keblawy, Mohamed El-Naggar and Ihsan Ahmed Shehadi

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE

     

    6.    Title:  Investigations of the foliar secretory structures of potential native medicinal plants of UAE using microscopic techniques (AED 151,000)

    Principal Investigator: Sameh Soliman

    Principal Co-Investigators: Ali El-Keblawy,

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE

     

    7.    Title:  Discovery and design of effective and safe anti-Candida and anti-fungal drugs (AED 190,000)

    Principal Investigator: Sameh Soliman

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE

     

    8.    Title:  The role of nurse plants and nebkhas in combating desertification and restoration of degraded habitats of the arid deserts in the UAE. (AED 160,000)

    Principal Investigator: Ali El-Keblawy

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE

     

    9.    Title:  Inhibition of Biogas Production from Sewage Sludge Co-digested with Date Palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) Seeds and Antibacterial and Anticancer Characteristics of Date Seeds Extracts. (AED 150,000)

    Principal Co-Investigator: Ismail Saadoun

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE

     

    10.  Title:  Employing congeneric and biogeographic approaches to study Prosopis juliflora invasion at regional and global scale (AED 400,000)

    Principal Investigator: Ali El-Keblawy

    Principal Co-Investigators: Ismail Saadoun

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE, and Sharjah Research Academy, Sharjah, UAE

     

    11.  Title:  Renewable and Alternative Fuels (Biodiesel and Biogas) from UAE Plants: Production Enhancement and Combustion Improvement using Nanoparticles (AED 400,000)

    Principal Co-Investigators: Ali El-Keblawy

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE, and Sharjah Research Academy, Sharjah, UAE

     

    12.  Title:  DNA Barcoding of Important Medicinal Plants in UAE (AED 400,000)

    Principal Investigator: Kareem A. Mosa

    Principal Co-Investigators: Ali El-Keblawy

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE, and Sharjah Research Academy, Sharjah, UAE


    13.  Title: Physiological, biochemical and molecular responses of vegetable crops to metal nanoparticles: a phytotoxicity assessment (AED 200,000)

    Principal Investigator: Kareem A. Mosa

    Principal Co-Investigators: Ali El-Keblawy, Ihsan Ahmed Shehadi, Ahmed M Almehdi

    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE.


    14. Title: Identification of Novel antimicrobial agents from probiotic cultures (AED 200,000)
    Principal Investigator:Sameh Soliman
    Sponsor: University of Sharjah, Sharjah, UAE.