Rashid Aman

Postdoctoral Fellows

Postdoctoral Fellow



Research Interests

I am interested in exploring CRISPR/Cas technologies for virus interference and other RNA manipulations in plants. Cas9 has widely been exploited in developing various fruitful genome engineering technologies such as for virus interference and various genetic manipulations. However, the use of new CRISPR effectors for virus interference or other genetic manipulations remains challenging. We have successfully employed and screened different RNA targeting CRISPR/Cas13 effectors to determine the most effective one for virus interference in plants. My research interests lie in understanding the use of CRISPR/Cas13 effectors for transcriptome engineering and other RNA manipulations in plants. Besides this, my research interests also focus on developing genome engineering technologies for basic biology and biotechnology.

Selected Publications

  • Ahmed Mahas, Norhan Hassan, Rashid Aman, Tin Marsic, Qiaochu Wang, 
    Zahir Ali, and Magdy M. Mahfouz.  “LAMP-coupled CRISPR-Cas12a module for rapid and sensitive detection of plant DNA viruses”. Viruses. 2021 Mar.
  • Aman, Rashid, Ahmed Mahas, Tin Marsic, Norhan Hassan, and Magdy M. Mahfouz. "Efficient, Rapid, and Sensitive Detection of Plant RNA Viruses With One-Pot RT-RPA–CRISPR/Cas12a Assay." Frontiers in microbiology 11 (2020): 3277.
  • Ali, Zahir, Rashid Aman, Ahmed Mahas, Gundra Sivakrishna Rao, Muhammad Tehseen, Tin Marsic, Rahul Salunke et al. "iSCAN: An RT-LAMP-coupled CRISPR-Cas12 module for rapid, sensitive detection of SARS-CoV-2." Virus research (2020): 198129 (*Equal contribution).
  • Butt, Haroon, Gundra Sivakrishna Rao, Khalid Sedeek, Rashid Aman, Radwa Kamel, and Magdy Mahfouz. "Engineering herbicide resistance via prime editing in rice." Plant Biotechnology Journal (2020).
  • Rashid Aman, Ahmed Mahas, Mahas A, Mahfouz M. Nucleic Acid Detection Using CRISPR/Cas Bio-sensing Technologies. ACS Synthetic Biology. 2020 Mar 11. DOI:10. 1021/acssynbio.9b00507.  
  • Mahas Ahmed*, Rashid Aman*, and Magdy Mahfouz. "CRISPR-Cas13d mediates robust RNA virus interference in plants." Genome Biology 20.1 (2019): 1-16. (*Equal contribution).
  • Rashid Aman, Ahmed Mahas, Haroon Butt, Zahir Ali, Fatimah Aljedaani and Magdy Mahfouz (2018). Engineering RNA virus interference via the CRISPR/Cas13 machinery in Arabidopsis. Viruses. 2018 Dec 19; 10:732. doi: 10.3390/v10120732.
  • Hee Jin Park*, Rashid Aman*, Francisco Gamez-Arjona*, Irene Villalta, Raul Carranco, Marika Lindahl, Damaso Hornero-Mendez, Elena García, Ray A. Bressan, Sang Yeol Lee, Clara Sánchez-Rodriguez, Jose M Pardo, Woe-Yeon Kim, Francisco J. Quintero, and Dae-Jin Yun (2021). A Calcium/Palmitoylation Switch Interfaces the Signaling Networks of Stress Response and Transition to Flowering (*Equal contribution- Under revision)
  • Rashid Aman, Zahir Ali, Haroon Butt, Ahmed Mahas, Fatimah Aljedaani, Muhammad Zuhaib Khan, Shouwei Ding and Magdy Mahfouz (2018). RNA virus interference via CRISPR/Cas13a system in plants. Genome Biology. 2018 Jan 4; 19(1):1. doi: 10.1186/s13059-017-1381-1.
  • Akhtar Ali, Natalia Raddatz, Rashid Aman, Songmi Kim, Hyeong Cheol Park, Dongwon Baek, Masood Jan, Dong-Ha Oh, Irfan Ullah Khan, Sang Yeol Lee, Ray A.Bressan, Keun Woo Lee, Jose M. Pardo, Albino Maggio, Hans J. Bohnert, Dae-Jin Yun (2016). A keystone Mutation in Plant Sodium Transporter HKT1 Enabling the Evolution of Salt Tolerance. Plant Physiology. 2016 Jul; 171(3):2112-26. doi: 10.1104/pp.16.00569.) 
  • Qiguang Xiea, Ping Loua, Victor Hermand, Rashid Aman, Hee Jin Park, Dae-Jin Yun, Woe Yeon Kim, Matti Juhani Salmela, Brent E. Ewers, Cynthia Weinig, Sarah L. Khan, D. Loring P. Schaible, and C. Robertson McClung (2015) Allelic polymorphism of GIGANTEA is responsible for naturally occurring variation in circadian period in Brassica rapa. Proc Natl Acad Sci 112:3829–3834. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1421803112 
  • Zahir Ali, Akhtar Ali, Hyeong Cheol Park, Dong ha Oh, Rashid Aman, Hans J. Bohnert, Woe Yeon Kim, Dae-Jin Yun (2012) TsHKT1;2, a HKT1 homolog from the extremophile Arabidopsisrelative Thellungiella salsuginea, shows K+-specificity in the presence of NaCl. Plant physiology; 158(3):1463-74. 
  • Akhtar Ali, Hyeong Cheol Park, Rashid Aman, Zahir Ali, Dae-Jin Yun (2013) Role of HKT1 in Thellungiella salsuginea, a model extremophile plant. Plant Signaling and Behavior. doi: 10.4161/psb.25196 


  • 2015 Ph. D.: Gyeongsang National University, South Korea, Division of Applied Life Science, Environmental Biotechnology
  • 2009 M.S.: Swinburne University of Technology, Australia, Biotechnology 
  • 2006 B.Sc. (Hons): University of Peshawar, Biotechnology 

Professional Profile

  • 2017- present Postdoctoral fellow: Genome Engineering Laboratory, Center for Desert Agriculture, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology
  • 2016-2017 Visiting Scientist: Genome Engineering Laboratory, Center for Desert Agriculture, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology
  • 2015-2016 Postdoctoral fellow: Cell Signaling Lab, Plant Molecular Biology and Biotechnology Research Center, Gyeongsang National University, South Korea


  • World Class University program, Gyeongsang National University, South Korea, 2009-2011 
  • Brain Korea Scholarship (BK-21), Gyeongsang National University, South Korea, 2012-2014 
  • Merit Scholarship, University of Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan, 2002-2005 

KAUST Affiliations

Prof. Magdy Mahfouz's Group

CDA - Center for Desert Agriculture

BESE - Biological and Environmental Science and Engineering Division

Research Interests Keywords

Synthetic biology Plant tissue culture (tobacco and rice) Virus based plant genome engineering CRISPR/Cas 9 (Cas9 and Cas13) technology for plant genome engineering CRISPR/Cas13 based RNA virus interference in plants CRISPR/Cas13 based RNA manipulation in plants Abiotic Stress Tolerance (Salt-Tolerance) Photoperiodic flowering in Arabidopsis Plant Molecular Biology Plant Biochemistry Cross-talks between Flowering and Salt stress Tolerance High Affinity Potassium Transport in Arabidopsis and Thellungiella salsuginea Plant Physiology