Plant & Biofuel Group (PABG)

The Plant and Biofuel Group (PABG) at Akhuwat-FIRST involves the following research areas.

Plant Stress Resistance:

  • Study of plants’ interactions to varied environmental conditions and stress factors.
  • Understanding how plants react to limited or excessive water supply, sunlight, and nutrients leads to an understanding of the most strategic growing practices.
  • Engineering biotic and abiotic stress resistance in plants using new-plant breeding techniques (CRISPR-Cas Technology).

Biofuel Production:

  • Conversion of Lignocellulosic biomass into biofuels using biological machinery
  • Establishment of an eco-sustainable biorefinery
  • Environmental bio-cleaning for biofuel production

Micropropagation of Disease-free Plants:

  • Tissue-culture micropropagation of Disease-free potato seed tubers.
  • Data-palm micropropagation for commercial plant multiplications.
  • Tissue-culture of ornamental plants for bio-conservation and commercial purposes.


  • CRISPR-Cas-based genome engineering in plants
  • ELISA, molecular screening of plant pathogens
  • PCR/RT-PCR/qPCR assays for molecular biology
  • Tissue-culture technology, micropropagation techniques
  • Gene cloning, construct designing and plant transformation techniques
  • Bioinformatics including sgRNA designing, RNAi in-silico designs, phylogenetic analysis, sequencing, etc.,
  • Biofuel technology including pyrolysis, fermentation, biodegradation, HPLC, SEM analysis, FTIR-based functional modifications,

Group Leader:            Dr. Amir Hameed;

Ph.D. Biotechnology


Cornell University, USA

Recent Publications:

  • Hameed A, Mehmood MA, Shahid M, Fatma S, Khan A & Ali S (2019). Prospects for potato genome editing to engineer resistance against viruses and cold-induced sweetening. GM Crops and Foods. DOI: 10.1080/21645698.2019.1631115 IF=3.3
  • Hameed A, Zaidi SSA, Sattar MN, Iqbal Z, & Tahir MN (2019). CRISPR technology to combat plant RNA viruses: A theoretical model for Potato virus Y (PVY) resistance. Microbial Pathogenesis.
  • Hameed A, Zaidi SSA, Shakir S, & Mansoor S (2018). Applications of new breeding technologies for potato improvement. Frontiers in Plant Science. DOI:10.3389/fpls.2018.00925. IF=4.1
  • Khan MZ, Amin I, Hameed A & Mansoor S (2018). CRISPR/Cas13a: Prospects for plant virus resistance. Trends in Biotechnology. DOI: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2018.05.005. IF=13.6
  • Hameed A, Bilal R, Latif F, Van Eck J, Jander G & Mansoor S (2018). RNAi-mediated silencing of endogenous Vlnv gene confers stable reduction of cold-induced sweetening in potato (Solanum tuberosum L. cv. Désirée). Plant Biotechnology Reports, 1-11. IF=1.5