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Suhail Khan

Post Doctoral Fellow

Research Group: Nina V Fedoroff

Research Interests

Halophytes are plants that can tolerate extreme saline conditions and some of them have the ability to grow in saline coastal deserts. They can be further tapped for a source of food, fodder and energy. Salicornia a succulent herb native to salt marshes and estuaries is promising because it can grow directly in seawater and is already in the food and feed chains. I am particularly interested to use next generation sequencing technologies to understand the genetic basis for salt stress adaptation and identification of traits that can be regulated to accelerate domestication process in Salicornia and other halophytes. The genomics data will provide landscape of ordered genes and its functions in halophyte and has a practical advantage for selection and breeding in crop improvement. Unavailability of suitable and improved germplasm for economically useful traits is another bottleneck in accelerating domestication process in Salicornia. I am also focusing to improve Salicornia germplasm through classical selection and breeding.

Selected Publications

  • Singh, R.K., Jena, S.N., Khan, M.S., Yadav, S., Banarjee, N., Raghuvanshi, S., Bhardwaj, S., Dattamajuder, S.K., Kapur, R., Soloman, S., Swapna M., Srivastava, S., and Tyagi, A.K. Development of a novel set of EST-SSR markers and their utility in revealing population structure and genetic diversity in sugarcane. Gene, 2013, 524 (2): 309-329


  • Li, L., Atef, A., Piatek, A., Ali, Z., Piatek, M., Aouida, M., Sharakou, A., Mahjoub, A., Wang, G., Khan, M.S., Fedoroff, N.V., Zhu, J.K. and Mahfouz, M. Characterization and DNA-Binding Specificities of Ralstonia TAL-like Effectors. Mol Plant, 2013, doi: 10.1093/mp/sst006


  • Khan, M.S, Yadav, S., Srivastava, S., Swapna, M., Chandra, A and Singh, R.K. Development and evaluation of new polymorphic functional CISP markers in sugarcane. Australian journal of Botany, 2011, 59(1) 38-45.


  • Singh, R.K., Khan, M.S., Singh, R., Pandey, D.K., Kumar, S., Lal, S. Analysis of Genetic Differentiation and Phylogenetic Relationships among Sugarcane Genotypes Differing in Response to Red Rot. Sugar Tech, 2011, 13(2): 137-144.


  • Gupta, V., Raghuvanshi, S., Gupta, A., Saini, N., Gaur, A., Khan, M. S., et al,. The water-deficit stress- and red-rot-related genes in sugarcane. Funct. Integr. Genomics, 2009, 10(2) 207-214.

Education Profile

  • 2010   Ph.D. in Botany (Plant Molecular Biology), IISR, Lucknow and Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Avadh University, Faizabad, India.

  • 2001    M.S. in Botany, Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Avadh University, Faizabad, India.

  • 1998    B.S. in Chemistry, Botany and Zoology, DDU Gorakhpur University, Gorakhpur, India.

Professional Profile

  • Jan. 2011- Present    Post Doctoral Fellow, Centre for Desert Agriculture, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Thuwal, KSA.

  • Sep. 2009-J an. 2011    Senior Research Fellow, Indian Institute of Sugarcane Research, Lucknow, India

  • Mar. 2009-Oct. 2009    Senior Research Fellow, National Institute of Plant Genome Research (NIPGR), New Delhi, India

  • Dec. 2007-Mar. 2009    Senior Research Fellow, Indian Grassland and Fodder Research Institute (ICAR), Jhansi, India

  • Jul. 2005 - Dec. 2007    Senior Research Fellow, Indian Institute of Sugarcane Research, Lucknow, India

  • Jul. 2003  - Jul. 2005     Junior Research Fellow, Indian Institute of Sugarcane Research, Lucknow, India