Arsheed Sheikh

Postdoctoral Fellow

Postdoctoral Fellow



Research Interests

We are interested in studying the role of m6A RNA modifications in regulating plant immunity. 
The N6-methyladenosine (m6A) modification is the most common internal RNA modification in plants. m6A is catalyzed by a multi-component methyltransferase (m6A writer) complex known as MTA complex in plants. m6A functions in key RNA metabolic processes by regulating gene expression, mRNA stability, translation efficiency, alternative splicing, and cytoplasmic mRNA turnover. 
We use Arabidopsis as a model plant where we study a mutant lacking m6A RNA modification. We study plant immunity and its regulation by m6A. 

Selected Publications

  • Suayib Üstün, Arsheed Sheikh, Selena Gimenez-Ibanez, Alexandra Jones, Vardis Ntoukakis and Frederik Börnke.(2016). The proteasome acts as a hub for local and systemic plant immunity in Arabidopsis thaliana and constitutes a virulence target of Pseudomonas syringae type-III effector proteins. Plant Physiology DOI:10.1104/pp.16.00808
  • Sheikh AH, Raghuram B, Eschen-Lippold L, Scheel D, Lee J, Sinha AK. (2014) Agroinfiltration by cytokininproducing Agrobacterium sp. strain GV3101 primes the defense response in Nicotiana tabacum. Molecular Plant Microbe Interaction 27 (11), 1175-1185
  • Sheikh AH, Eschen-Lippold L, Pecher P, Hohenwarter W, Sinha AK, Scheel D, Lee J (2016) Regulation of WRKY46 transcription factor function by mitogen activated protein kinases in Arabidopsis thaliana. Frontiers in Plant Sciences 7:61
  • Sheikh AH, Raghuram B, Jalmi SK, Wankhede DP, Singh P, Sinha AK. (2013) Interaction between two rice mitogen activated protein kinases and its possible role in plant defense. BMC Plant Biology 13 (1), 1-11
  • Sheikh AH, Sinha AK (2015) Detection of Mitogen-activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) Activation upon Exogenous Chemical Application in Arabidopsis Protoplasts. BioProtocols 5 (18):1-6
  • Sheikh AH, Ara H, Sinha AK (2012). Mitogen Activated Protein Kinases: A Hunt for their Physiological Substrates in Plants. Plant Stress 6 (Special Issue 1) Global Science Books pp 37-42
  • Sheikh AH, Ntoukakis V (2016) Mitogen-activated protein kinases activation post effector recognition in tomato. Acta Horticultare
  • Raghuram B, Sheikh AH, Rustagi Y, Sinha AK (2015) MicroRNA biogenesis factor DRB1 is a phosphorylation target of mitogen activated protein kinase, MPK3 in both rice and Arabidopsis. FEBS Journal 282:521-36
  • RMF Hussain, AH Sheikh, I Haider, M Quareshy, HJM Linthorst (2018) Arabidopsis WRKY50 and TGA transcription factors synergistically activate expression of PR1 Frontiers in Plant Sciences 9:4
  • R Badmi, AH Sheikh, PK Bhagat, D Verma, S Noryang, AK Sinha (2018) Possible role of plant MAP kinases in the biogenesis and transcription regulation of rice microRNA pathway factors. Plant Physiology and Biochemistry 129, 238-243
  • Bhardwaj D, Sheikh AH, Sinha AK, Tuteja N. (2011) Stress induced β subunit of heterotrimeric G-proteins from Pisum sativum interacts with mitogen activated protein kinase. Plant Signaling and Behavior 6 (2), 287
  • Raghuram B, Sheikh AH, Sinha AK (2014) Regulation of MAP kinase signaling cascade by microRNAs in Oryza sativa. Plant Signaling & Behavior 9 (10), e972130
  • Raina SK, Wankhede DP, Jaggi M, Singh P, Jalmi SK, Raghuram B, Sheikh AH, Sinha AK (2012) CrMPK3, a mitogen activated protein kinase from Catharanthus roseus and its possible role in stress induced biosynthesis of monoterpenoid indole alkaloids. BMC Plant Biology 12:134 


  • Ph.D., (2014) NIPGR, JNU, New Delhi India
  • M.Sc., (2009) University of Kashmir, Srinagar, India 

Professional Profile

  • 2012-2014: DAAD Sandwich Scholar, Leibniz IPB, Halle, Germany
  • 2014-2018: Postdoc fellow at University of Warwick, Coventry, UK
  • 2018-till date: Postdoc fellow at KAUST, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia 

Scientific and Professional Membership

  • Member of International Society for Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions (IS-MPMI), USA 


  • DST INSPIRE FACULTY award (2016), Govt of India (fellowship not availed)
  • DAAD Ph. D Sandwich Fellowship, Germany (2012-2014)
  • Gold Medalist at M.Sc. level
  • CSIR NET-JRF 2009 and 2010
  • DBT NET-JRF 2009
  • ICAR NET 2010
  • GATE 2009 

KAUST Affiliations

Prof. Heribert Hirt's Group

CDA - Center for Desert Agriculture

BESE - Biological and Environmental Science and Engineering Division

Research Interests Keywords

Plant Molecular Biology