Genome and Biotechnology Unit

About the Unit

To keep pace with the rapid development in the field of biomedical research and its various applications in the diagnosis of diseases, drug design and gene therapy and to achieve a distinct scientific renaissance in line with the vision of the Saudi Kingdom 2030. University of Tabuk, represented by the Faculty of Science, established a research unit specialized in genomic and biotechnology to conduct basic applied research through the use of the latest biotechnologies, which in turn contribute in the diagnosis of genetic diseases in Saudi society. This unit also contributes in scientific research enrichment in the fields of medicine, environment, industry and molecular biology and bioinformatics by the interaction and collaboration between researchers from different specializations at the University of Tabuk.

Vision and Mission


To be a leading unit in genomics and biotechnology research and its applications.


To become a distinguished unit in genomics and biotechnology research and its applications locally and internationally.


  • Achieving integration in various scientific disciplines through building local and global scientific partnerships to exchange experiences and collaboration in joint molecular biology and biotechnology research projects.
  • Raising the quality of scientific research, and employing research to address community issues by providing outstanding research services and partnerships with governmental and non-governmental organisations in various fields including health, environment and agriculture.
  • Using modern biotechnologies to identify the relationship between genetic forms and the degree and type of response to drugs treatment and the production of specialized vaccines and gene therapy.
  • Initiating partnerships with hospitals starting with the northern region hospitals in Saudi Arabia, hence the unit plays an important and essential role in the genetic diagnosis of samples taken from hospitals in the region.
  • Conducting DNA tests to help in an early diagnose of diseases, developing treatment methods, drug designing and gene therapy by using bioinformatics tools.
  • Providing training courses on basic and advanced molecular biology techniques for graduate students to help them in learning and developing scientific research skills and qualify them for the labour market.
  • Providing an equipped place for postgraduate students at the university that can help them to do their research project in the unit laboratories benefiting from all facilities provided.
  • Becoming a distinguished and well-known research unit locally and internationally through publishing outstanding scientific publications in international journals classified with a high impact factor.
  • Attracting local and international talents and advantaging from their experience in developing the unit.
  • Developing a base for genome research and the Saudi Human Genome Project.

Research Areas

  • Detection of the causes of genetic diseases prevalent in the northern region.
  • Employing biotechnology to contribute to genetic diseases treatment.
  • Employing biotechnology to discover drugs to treat genetic diseases and cancer.
  • Studying of genetic and genes causes of tumours.
  • Studying the genetic effects of anti-cancer drugs.
  • Identifying the genetic mutations causing diseases in Tabuk region.
  • Improving the genetic characteristics of living organisms in the northern region.
  • DNA encoding of organisms in Tabuk region.
  • Studying the DNA of economic importance plants in the northern region.

Unit Laboratories

1- Genome Laboratory

2- Biotechnology Laboratory

3- Bioinformatics Laboratory




Albalawi, Aishah, et al. "Carnosic acid attenuates acrylamide-induced retinal toxicity in zebrafish embryos." Experimental eye research 175 (2018): 103-114.

Albalawi, Aishah, et al. "Protective effect of carnosic acid against acrylamide-induced toxicity in RPE cells." Food and Chemical Toxicology 108 (2017): 543-553.

Jia, L., Raghupathy, R. K., Albalawi, A., Zhao, Z., Reilly, J., Xiao, Q., & Shu, X. (2017). A colour preference technique to evaluate acrylamide-induced toxicity in zebrafish.Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part C: Toxicology & Pharmacology, 199, 11-19.

Gomez-Escobar, N., Almobadel, N., Alzahrani, O., Feichtinger, J., Planells-Palop, V., Alshehri, Z., ... & McFarlane, R. J. (2016). Translin and Trax differentially regulate telomere-associated transcript homeostasis. Oncotarget, 7(23), 33809.

Hawsawi, Y.M., Al-Zahrani, F., Mavromatis, C., Baghdadi, M.A., Saggu, S. and Oyouni, A.A.A., 2018. Stem Cell Applications for Treatment of Cancer and Autoimmune Diseases: Its Promises, Obstacles, and Future Perspectives. Technology in cancer research & treatment, 17, p.1533033818806910.

Al-Amer, O., Oyouni, A.A.A., Alshehri, M. and Alzaheb, R.A., 2018. Transferrin (re3811647) gene polymorphism in iron deficiency anemia in Saudi Arabia. Indian Journal of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology, 12(3), pp.329-334.

Oyouni, A.A.A., Saggu, S., Tousson, E. and Rehman, H., 2018. Immunosuppressant drug tacrolimus induced mitochondrial nephrotoxicity, modified PCNA and Bcl-2 expression attenuated by Ocimum basilicum L. in CD1 mice. Toxicology Reports.

Al-Amer, O., Oyouni, A.A.A. and Saggu, S., 2017. Molecular Targeted Therapy for Breast Cancer: A New Frontiers. Biosciences Biotechnology Research Asia, 14 (3), pp.953-959.

Oyouni, A.A.A., 2017. Human Cancer Genetics, Stem Cells, and Medical Molecular Biology: An Epigrammatic Review. Biosciences Biotechnology Research Asia, 14(3), pp.881-885.

Oyuoni, A.A.A., Rehman, H. and Saggu, S., 2017. Addiction of tobacco, Shamma and Khat: Incidence of oral cancer in Saudi Arabia. Toxicology Letters, 280, p.S89.

Oyuoni, A.A.A., Saggu, S., Rehman, H., Toussan, E. and Al Thabiani, A., 2017. Suppression of FK506 induced nephrotoxicity in mice by Bacopa monnierii. Toxicology Letters, 280, p.S139.

Rehman, H., Saggu, S., Oyuoni, A.A.A. and Al Thibiani, A., 2017. Modulatory role of Ociumum basilicum (Al-Rehan) leaves against 4-tert-octyl phenol induced oxidative stress in rats. Toxicology Letters, 280, p.S136.

Saggu, S., Rehman, H. and Oyouni, A.A.A., 2017. Pervasiveness of breast cancer in Saudi Arabia. Toxicology Letters, 280, p.S247.

Saggu, S., Rehman, H., Alzeibr, F.M., Oyouni, A.A.A., Zidan, N., Panneerselvam, C. and Trivedi, S., 2017. Cymbopogon schoenanthus (Ethkher) ameliorates cadmium induced toxicity in swiss albino mice. Saudi Journal of Biological Sciences.

Alatwi, H.E., Downs, J.A. (2015). Removal of H2A.Z by INO80 promotes homologous recombination. EMBO rep 16, 986–994. “Highlighted”

L?pez-Perrote, A., Alatwi, H.E., Torreira, E., Ismail, A., Ayora, S., Downs, J.A., Llorca, O. (2014). Structure of Yin Yang 1 oligomers that cooperate with RuvBL1-RuvBL2 ATPases. J. Biol. Chem. jbc.M114.567040.

AVENT, N., MADGETT, T., HALAWANI, A., ALTAYAR, M., KIERNAN, M., REYNOLDS, A. & LI, X. 2015. Next?generation sequencing: academic overkill or high?resolution routine blood group genotyping? ISBT Science Series, 10, 250-256.

ALESSA, A. H. A., TEE, K. L., GONZALEZ-PEREZ, D., ALI, H. E. M. O., EVANS, C. A., TREVASKIS, A., XU, J. H. & WONG, T. S. 2019. Accelerated directed evolution of dye-decolorizing peroxidase using a bacterial extracellular protein secretion system (BENNY). Bioresources and Bioprocessing, 6.

Abdulraheem Almalki, KF Alsharif, Osama Al-Amer, Abdulaziz Almalki and Ahmed Abdulmoneim. Peroxisome proliferator activated receptor (PPAR) delta genetic polymorphism in Saudi normal population. Indian Journal of Public Health Research & Development. 2018; In Press.

Osama Al-Amer, Rashid Mir, KF Alsharif, FM Abu-Duhier, Abdulraheem Almalki and Wayil Yassen. Potential impact of TP53 gene polymorphism rs1042522 G>C in Leukemia Patients of Saudi Arabia. Indian Journal of Public Health Research & Development. 2018; In Press.

Osama Al-Amer, KF Alsharif, FM Abu-Duhier, Abdulraheem Almalki, Wayil Yassen, Rashid Mir. Involvement of KRAS rs61764370 T>G Gene Variation in Leukemia Patients of Saudi Arabia. Indian Journal of Public Health Research & Development. 2018; In Press.

Riyadh A Alzaheb and Osama Al-Amer. The Prevalence of Iron Deficiency Anemia and its Associated Risk Factors among a Sample of Female University Students in Tabuk, Saudi Arabia. Clinical Medicine Insights: Women’s Health. 2017;10:1-8.

Riyadh A Alzaheb and Osama Al-Amer. The Seroprevalence and Risk Factors of Toxoplasmosis Among Female Undergraduate University Students in Saudi Arabia. Oman Medical Journal. 2017; 32(6):486-491.

Osama Al-Amer, Atif Oyouni and Shalini Saggu. Molecular Targeted Therapy for Breast Cancer: A New Frontiers. BIOSCIENCES BIOTECHNOLOGY RESEARCH ASIA. 2017;14(3):953–959.

Osama Al-Amer. Bone Marker Gene Expression in Calvarial Bones: Different Bone Microenvironments. J of Biol Res-Thessaloniki. 2017;24(9).

Osama Al-Amer. E-Cadherin and FGFR1 Expression in Mouse Osteoblastogenesis in Normoxic Cultures. Int J Biomed Sci. 2017;13(1):13–19.

Riyadh A Alzaheb and Osama Al-Amer. The Dietary Iron Intake and Iron Status of Female University Students in Saudi. Australasian Medical Journal. 2017;10(4):275–284.

Riyadh A Alzaheb and Osama Al-Amer. Prevalence and Predictors of Hypovitaminosis D among Female University Students in Tabuk, Saudi Arabia. Clinical Medicine Insights: Women’s Health. 2017;10:1-7.

Osama Al-Amer. Homing of Myeloma Cells into Calvarial Bone using Myeloma Murine Models. IJHSR. 2015;5(7):357-36

Osama Al-Amer. Tracking of Individual Myeloma Cell Homing to the Calvarial Bone Marrow using Myeloma Murine Models. Int Res

J Med Med Sci. 2015;3(2):44-50.

 Afaq SAtiya AMalik AAlwabli ASAlzahrani DAAl-Solami HMAlzahrani OAlam QKamal MAAbulfaraj AAAlhebshi AMTarique M (2020). Analysis of methyltransferase (MTase) domain from Zika virus (ZIKV). Bioinformation. 16(3):229-235.

Afaq SMalik AAkhtar MSAlwabli ASAlzahrani DAAl-Solami HMAlzahrani OAlam QKamal MAAbulfaraj AATarique M (2020). Analysis of predicted proteasomal cleavages in the methyltransferase domain from JEV. Bioinformation. 16(3):223-228.

Alshehri, M. A., Al Thabiani Aziza, Alzahrani, O., Ibrahim, A. A. S., Osman, G., & Bahattab, O. (2019). DNA-barcoding and Species Identification for some Saudi Arabia Seaweeds using rbcL Gene. J Pure Appl Microbiol, 13(4), 2035-2044.

Al-Amer, O., Hawasawi, Y., Oyouni, A. A. A., Alshehri, M., Alasmari, A., Alzahrani, O., & Aljohani, S. A. S. (2020). Study the association of Transmembrane Serine Protease 6 Gene Polymorphisms with Iron Deficiency Status in Saudi Arabia. Gene, 144767.

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