Sign In
Skip Navigation Links.
Expand AboutAbout
Programs & Degrees
Our People
Expand Quick LinksQuick Links
Expand MediaMedia
Prof.Ali Al-Keblawy Academic RankProfessor


  • Plant Ecology

Research Interests:

  • Propagation of native Plants. Ecological Environmental Impact Assessment. Biodiversity and Conservation in Desert Plant Communities. Effect of Grazing on Plant Diversity in Desert Rangeland. Impact of plants f Native Flora of the UAE Deserts. Artificial Forests as Conservation Sites. Management of Wildlife and Livestock Populations in Desert Ecosystems. Plant Reproductive Ecology


Ph.D.: Desert Plant Ecology, December 1994, Tanta University, Tanta, Egypt in a joint supervision program with University of Windsor, Canada. M. Sc.: Desert Plant Ecology, December 1987, Alexandria University, Egypt. B.Sc.: Botany, May 1983, Tanta University, Egypt.
Jan. 2011- till now: Associate Professor, Dept of Applied Biology, Sharjah, UAE. Jan. 2011- till now: Director of Sharjah Seed Bank and Herbarium, Sharjah Research Academy. Sept. 2010 – Jan. 2011:Associate Professor: Plant Ecology, Department of Aridland Agriculture, Faculty of Food and Agriculture, UAE University, Al-Ain, UAE.
Director of Sharjah Seed Bank and Herbarium, Sharjah Research Academy
Member of the National Committee of “Biodiversity and Desertification combating” with the Minister of Environment and Water decree number 345 in 2012. Technical Member of the Soil Survey of the Northern Emirates (2010-2013). Technical Member in Ajman Award in Agriculture for selecting the best garden, decree number 90 for the year 2012 by General Director, Municipality and Planning Department, Ajman.
Research Projects During the last three years (2014 – 2017) 1. Ali El-Keblawy, Concepción L. Alados, Yolanda Pueyo Estaún, Teresa Navarro and Sanjay Gairola The role of nurse plants and nebkhas in combating desertification and restoration of degraded habitats of the arid deserts in the UAE Funded by University of Sharjah Research Office (AED 160,000). 2. Ghenai C. and Ali El-Keblawy (2017 – 2020). Renewable and Alternative Fuels (Biodiesel and Biogas) from UAE Plants: Production Enhancement and Combustion Improvement using Nanoparticles Funded by Sharjah Research Academy and University of Sharjah (AED 400,000). 3. Kareem Mosa, Ali El-Keblawy, Uzma Inayat, Ana Martins DNA Barcoding of Important Medicinal Plants in UAE. Funded by Sharjah Research Academy and University of Sharjah (AED 400,000) 4. Kareem Mosa, Ali El-Keblawy (2016 – 2018). Transcriptomics and Metabolomics analysis to Reveal Stress Related Genes, Phytohormones, and Osmolytes in Facultative Halophytes plants of the UAE. Funded by University of Sharjah Research Office (AED 200,000) 5. Ali El-Keblawy, Inderjit, Ragan M. Callaway, Kumud Acharya and Ismail Saadoun (2016-2018). Employing congeneric and biogeographic approaches to study Prosopis juliflora invasion at regional and global scale. Funded by Sharjah Research Academy and University of Sharjah (AED 400,000). 6. Maryam Al-Nesf, Ali. El-Keblawy, M Mar Trigo, Ammira S. Akil, Amjad Tuffaha, Mehdi Al-Adeli, Hassan Mobayed and Hisham A. Sattar (2016 – 2019). Aerobiological studies in Qatar and Sharjah: Toward establishment of a network for pollen analysis and Allerginicity. Funded by Qatar Foundation, Qatar, Grand number NPRP9-241-3-043 (AED 2,610,000) 7. El-Keblawy A., A. Al-Marzouqi and B. Jobe (2012 – 2016) Ecological Studies and Seed Oil Composition of the Indigenous Moringa peregrina: Toward Conservation and Economic Use of UAE plants, Funded by Emirates Foundation, Abu Dhabi, UAE (AED160,000) 8. El-Keblawy A and Tamer Khafaga (2013 -2016). Assessment of Forage Productivity and Carrying Capacity of Dubai Deserts rangelands: Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve as a case study "Phase 2". Funded by National Research Foundation, UAE (AED 160,000). 9. El-Keblawy A and Hamad Alkuwari (2012-2015). Potential Native Plants for Urban Landscape of Gulf Countries: Propagation and Adaptation under Nursery and Street Conditions, Funded by Qatar Foundation, Qatar (AED 3,670,000).
Research articles in peer-reviewed journals during the last three years (2015 – 2017) 1. El-Keblawy, A., S. Soliman, R. Al-Khoury, A. Ghauri, H. Al Rammah, S.E. Hussain, S. Rashid and Z. Manzoor (2017). Effect of light and temperature during seed maturation on germination response to temperature and light quality of Citrullus colocynthis from the Arabian deserts. Plant Biology (Acepted) 2. El-Keblawy, A., Shabana H.A., Navarro T. and Soliman S. (2017). Effect of maturation time on dormancy and germination of Citrullus colocynthis (Cucurbitaceae) seeds from the Arabian Hyper-arid Deserts. BMC Plant Biology (accepted) 3. Sanjay Gairola, Hatem Shabana, Tamer Mahmoud, S. Ghazanfar and Ali El-Keblawy (2017). Biodiversity conservation in the Arabian Peninsula. Current Science (in press) 4. Soliman S., Musa K., El-Keblawy A. and Husseiny M. I, (2017). Exogenous and Endogenous Increase in Fungal GGPP Increased Fungal Taxol Production. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 101, 7523–7533. 5. Sanjay Gairola, Tamer Mahmoud, Ali El-Keblawy and Marianne Le Roux (2017). Morphological distinction between two Crotalaria Species from United Arab Emirates: leaf, flower, pod and seed. Bangladesh Journal of Plant Taxonomy (accepted) 6. El-Keblawy, A. (2017). Germination response to light and temperature in eight annual grasses from disturbed and natural habitats of an arid Arabian desert. Journal of Arid Environments, 147, 17-24 7. Soliman S., Alnajdy D., El-Keblawy A.; Musa K. Khoder G. A. and Noreddin, A. (2017). Plants’ Natural Products as Alternative Promising Anti-Candida Drugs. Pharmacognosy Reviews 11(22): 104 - 122 8. Soliman, S. S., Semreen, M. H., El-Keblawy, A. A., Abdullah, A., Uppuluri, P., & Ibrahim, A. S. (2017). Assessment of herbal drugs for promising anti-Candida activity. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 17(1), art. no. 257 9. El-Keblawy, A. (2017). Light and temperature requirements during germination of potential perennial grasses for rehabilitation of degraded sandy Arabian Deserts. Land Degradation & Development, 28(5):1687 - 1695 10. El-Keblawy, A. (2017). Impact of Fencing and Irrigation on Species Composition and Diversity of Desert Plant Communities in the United Arab Emirates. Land Degradation & Development 28(4): 1354 - 1362 11. El-Keblawy, A. and A. Khedr (2017). Population Structure and Ecological Role of Moringa Peregrina (Forssk.) Fiori. in the Northwestern Range Edge at Hajar Mountains. Plant Biosystems 151 (1): 29-30 12. El-Keblawy A., S. Gairola, A. Bhatt and T. Mahmoud (2017). Effects of maternal salinity on salt tolerance during germination of Suaeda aegyptiaca: a facultative halophyte in the Arab Gulf desert. Plant Species Biology 32(1), 45-53. 13. Rodriguez, C, T. Navarro and A. El-Keblawy. (2017). Covariation in diaspore mass and dispersal patterns in three Mediterranean coastal dunes in southern Spain. Turkish Journal of Botany 41(2), 161-170 14. El-Keblawy, A and S. Gairola (2017). Dormancy Regulating Chemicals Alleviate Innate Seed Dormancy and Promote Germination of Desert Annuals. Journal of Plant Growth Regulation. 36(2), 300-311 15. Gairola S., T. Mahmoud, H. Shabana and A. El-Keblawy, (2016). Growing knowledge about the floral diversity of United Arab Emirates: new additions and conservation through seed banking. Tribulus 24: 136 - 143 16. Phondani, P. C., Arvind Bhatta, Esam Elsarraga, Yousef M., El-Keblawy, A. (2016). Criteria and indicator approach of global sustainability assessment system for sustainable landscaping using native plants in Qatar. Ecological Indicators 69: 381–389 17. Mahmoud, T., Gairola, S., Shabana, H., & El-Keblawy, A. (2016). Contribution to the flora of United Arab Emirates: Glinus lotoides L.(Molluginaceae) and Senna occidentalis L.(Fabaceae) two new records. Biodiversity Journal, 7 (2): 223–228 18. El-Keblawy, A., A. Khedr and T. Khafaga (2016). Vegetation Composition and Diversity of Wadi Helo: A Case Study in Hajar Mountains. Arid Land Research and Management. 30(4), 389-399 19. El-Keblawy A., S. Gairola and A. Bhatt (2016). Maternal Habitat Affects Germination Requirements of Anabasis setifera, a succulent shrub of the Arabian Deserts. Acta Botanica Brasilica 30: 35-40 20. El-Keblawy A., S. Gairola and A. Bhatt (2016). Maternal salinity environment affects salt tolerance during germination in Anabasis setifera: A facultative desert halophyte. Journal of Arid Land. 8: 254-263 21. Gairola S., El-Keblawy, A and T. Mahmoud (2016). A note on the Current distribution of Nicotiana plumbaginifolia (Solanaceae) in the United Arab Emirates. National Academy Science Letters. 39(6), 461-464 22. Bhatt A, S. Gairola and El-Keblawy A. (2016). Seed colour affects dormancy and germination requirements in two species of Lotus (Fabaceae). Revista de Biología Tropical 64 (2): 483- 492 23. El-Keblawy A. T. Khafaga and T. Navarro (2016). Live and dead Shrubs and grasses have different facilitative and interfering effects on associated plants in arid Arabian deserts. Journal of Arid Environments, 125. 127-135 24. Gallacher, D and. El-Keblawy, A. (2016). Macromorphology and recruitment of Prosopis cineraria in the United Arab Emirates. Ecology, Environment and Conservation. 22 (2): 1001 - 1006 25. Mahmoud, T., Gairola S., H. Shabana and El-Keblawy, A. (2015). Sesbania bispinosa and Trifolium repens, two new legume records for natural flora of the United Arab Emirates. Biodiversity Journal, 6 (3) 719 -722) 26. El-Keblawy A., A. Bhatt and S. Gairola (2015). Storage on maternal plants affects light and temperature requirements during germination in two small seeded halophytes in the Arabian deserts. Pakistan Journal of Botany, 47: 1701-1708 27. Mahmoud, T., Gairola S., , and El-Keblawy, A. (2015). Parthenium hysterophorus and Bidens pilosa, two new records to the invasive weed flora of the United Arab Emirates. Journal on New Biological Reports 4(1):26 – 32. 28. Mahmoud, T., Gairola S. and El-Keblawy, A. (2015). Large old trees need more conservation attention: a case of Tamarix aphylla in the arid deserts of United Arab Emirates. Journal of Asia-Pacific Biodiversity 8(2), 183-185 29. Gairola S., T. Mahmoud, A. Bhatt and El-Keblawy, A. (2015). Sphaeralcea bonariensis (Malvaceae): A newly recorded weed for the flora of United Arab Emirates. Phytotaxa. 213(2): 151-154. 30. El-Keblawy A., A. Bhatt and S. Gairola (2015). Developing sea watered landscapes: a potential way to reduce stress on fresh water resources. Current Science 108(10): 1773-1774 31. El-Keblawy, A. and A.Bhatt (2015). Aerial seed bank affects germination behaviour of two small seeded Halophytes in the Arabian Deserts. Journal of Arid Environments. 115: 10-17 32. El-Keblawy, A., M. Abdelfatah and A. Khedr (2015). Relationships between landforms, soil characteristics and dominant xerophytes in the hyper-arid northern United Arab Emirates. Journal of Arid Environments 115: 28-36 33. Gairola S., A. Bhatt and El-Keblawy, A. (2015). A perspective on potential use of halophytes for reclamation of salt-affected lands. Wulfenia Journal, 22: 88-97
1. Distinguished Faculty award in Scientific Research, University of Sharjah, June 2014 2. Distinguished Faculty award in Scientific Research, University of Sharjah, June 2016
1. Coordinator, “Research Group entitled “Environmental and Chemical Biology (ECB 2. Coordinator, “for the collaborative activities between UoS and Both University of Barcelona and University of Malaga 3. Coordinator, for “Establishment of an Environmental Science Master Program in Science and Engineering 4. Editorial board of a. Associate Editor of BMC Ecology, BioMed Central (UK), Impact Factor = 2.9 ( b. Land Degradation and Development, Wily publication, Impact Factor = 9.8 ( c. Flora, ELSEVIER publication, Impact Factor = 1.13 d. "The Open Ecology Journal", Bentham Open Publisher.( e. Editorial board of "Journal of Biodiversity & Endangered Specis ", OMICS Group Publisher. ( 5. Provided several training programs in different field of ecology and environmental science for trainees from different organizations 6. Consultant for Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR) in two projects in restoration of degraded lands in the Arab Gulf region 7. Consultant for Expo City, Dubai, for selecting and propagating indigenous plants for landscaping the city (Dec 2015 – Oct 2016) 8. Consultant for Abu Environmental Agency-Dhabi for selecting and propagating indigenous plants for landscaping Abu Dhabi streets (Feb 2010 – Oct 2011) 9. Participating with teams from the different Arab Country in compiling "Arab Encyclopedia of Life". This work is coordinated by the Bibliotheca Alexandrina for both United Nations and Arab League Council 10. Member in the scientific community of “King Saud University”, KSA. I reviewed several research proposals, books and proportion files for Associate and full professor degrees. 11. Consultant for Al-Nakheel Company, Qatar for providing them with seeds and technical support for the propagation of many desert native plants that could be used in urban landscaping. 12. Consultant for Al-Ain Wildlife Park and Resort for selecting and propagating indigenous plants for landscaping Al-Ain Wildlife Park and Resort (Feb 2010 – May 2011) 13. Consultant for Environmental and Protected Areas Authority - Sharjah, UAE, for building a database for future management of Wadi Al Helo Protected area (Feb 2010 – May 2011) 14. Consultant for Sharjah Academy of Science for establishment a seed bank and herbarium, in collaboration with Royal Botanical Garden (Kew), UK (May 2009 – April 2012) 15. Reviewing the "Environmental Impact Assessment" reports for Environmental Agency-Abu Dhabi (January 2007 –till now). 16. Reviewed the Vegetation Map of Abu Dhabi Emirate, which is one of the important deliverables of the Extensive Soil Survey of Abu Dhabi Emirate. The review was submitted to both International Center for BioSaline Agriculture (ICBA) and Environmental Agency Abu Dhabi 17. Prepared an "Environmental Impact Assessment" report for "the Proposed Gabel Ali Area, Dubai". 18. As a member of Education and Environmental Awareness Committee (EEAC), I shared in the preparation of the report of the third (final) stage of the “National Environmental Strategy and Environmental Action Plan” prepared by Federal Environmental Agency. During about 10 meetings with EEAC I provided them with proposals for some changes and modifications in the schools and university curricula to improve the environmental awareness of the students. 19. Collaborating with a team from different federal governmental sectors in the UAE in the implementation of Abu Dhabi Global Environmental Data Initiative. I mainly working in the sector of Terrestrial Habitat and Land Resources. 20. Collaborating with Environmental Agency, Abu Dhabi in a project about "compiling environmental database about Abu Dhabi Emirates" (September 2005- till now).
I believe that my role as an instructor is to facilitate active learning and critical thinking by students, rather than hoping that they passively absorb my words and ideas. The students must be engaged, involved, and think to learn. To me, it seems most clear that students are ready to learn when they are actively asking questions about the subject matter. To accomplish this I usually give students assignments related to the subject of the next lecture. Reading the lecture materials in advance prepare students to answer and ask questions during the class. I also believe taht students must practice higher-level thinking skills, notably integration, analysis, and decision-making. These activities would always be best accomplished in biological sciences by letting and encouraging the student to collect data about a certain subject from field or other sources in the libraries. Typically, I follow this philosophy in teaching the selected Topics Courses (A & C) in Biotechnology). In addition, I usually go with students to field trips. Furthermore, engaging students in scientific research is always the outcome of practicing higher-level thinking skills. During my teaching career, I usually involve my students in doing applicable scientific research that could result in scientific publications. I helped several students in the UAE University, Windsor University (Canada) and Wayne State University (USA) to prepare the results of their research projects for publication in international journals or presentation in international conferences. During my work in the UAE University, Twelve undergraduate and 5 graduate students worked with me in several projects (funded and unfunded) and coauthored or presented 26 papers in peer-reviewed or national and international conferences. Currently, two undergraduate students of Biotechnology program, UoS, are working with me in two research projects Computers and electronic databases have become valuable tools in conducting science and searching the published literatures; thus, I would want students to become familiar with online sources of information. The ability to communicate clearly, both orally and in writing, is also an essential skill, which I always try to improve it through encouraging students to represent their research results to their peers. During the oral presentation, the students receive questions from their classmates and have to make good arguments and provide informed answers. Such presentations allow for healthy discussions that the majority of students find them stimulating. I also benefit from the new technology not only to simplify the information to the students through using computer-facilitated software (e.g., PowerPoint) and multimedia presentations to illustrate concepts, but also through making easier communications and providing them with various teaching materials through the use of the Blackboard. Given the extensive environmental challenges that our world faces, I believe that students must be concerned not only with global environmental problems, but also with regional and local environmental problems. As most Ecology text books use examples and case studies from environments other than the UAE, I always introduce local examples and case studies from the local environment of the UAE. In my teaching, I depend mainly on local case studies that make students link between what they learning from basic scientific principles with local environmental problems. This was the reason for executing two innovation projects to develop teaching tools for courses of Ecology and Environmental Sciences. In one project, I produced eight movies that demonstrate the local problems and case studies from the UAE. The movies covered topics such as Water Resources and Managements in the UAE, Soil Types and Vegetations of the UAE, Efforts of the UAE to Conserve Wildlife and Biodiversity (Sir Bani Yas as a Case Study), Afforestation in the UAE, Mangrove Swamps, Relationships between Organisms, Adaptation of Organisms to Desert Conditions, and Ecosystems in the UAE. In the second project, I led a team from different disciplines to integrate our knowledge in producing an interactive multimedia CD about the “Ecosystems of the UAE”. By these projects, we brought the field to the classroom; especially going to field trips is hard because of the harsh weather during most of the year in the UAE.
Back to list