Lina F. Yousef

Lina F. Yousef


Assistant Professor - Water & Environmental Engineering
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Dr. Lina Yousef attained B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Biology from the University of Western Ontario in Canada in 2002 and 2005, and a Ph.D. degree in Soil Science from The Ohio State University in the U.S in 2010.  She first joined Masdar Institute in September 2010 as a research scientist to assist in the development of integrated seawater agricultural systems for the generation of aviation biofuels from halophytic feedstock.  Shortly after in 2011, Dr. Yousef joined the MI faculty team and spent a year at MIT working with Dr. Penny (Sallie) Chisholm on understanding salinity tolerance mechanisms in cyanobacteria with applications in bioenergy. Her research experiences are broad and involved: the biological activity of natural products; molecular and biochemical analysis of plants and plant pathogens; and the biological analysis of soils. 

Her current research interests focus on developing low cost biotechnologies and management practices for the sustainable use of the soil and water natural resource.  Outcomes of her research will have applications in bioenergy and sustainable agricultural practices.

Courses / Teaching interest:

  • FDN 461 “Chemistry and Separation Science” (Chemistry Module)
  • WEE 515 “Microbiology for Environmental and Bioprocess Engineering”
  • WEE 608 “Applied Environmental Chemistry and Biotechnology”

Advisor to Current Masdar Institute Students:

  • Nahid Mahmoud Khalifa  
  • Celia Maria Garcia Banos Lopez   
  • Sumaya AlHosani 
  • Naeema Khamis Alnofeli 




Research Projects:

  • Biogeochemical cycling of carbon
  • Discovery of microbial enzymes /directed evolution of enzymes

Research Interests:
I am interested in developing technologies that support the preservation of the UAE’s natural resources, and particularly its soil.  As a trained microbiologist and soil scientist – my research objectives are to:

  • Develop a better understanding of microbial ecology in natural and engineered environments
  • Manage the limited soil resource for improved agricultural productivity, with a focus on Arid soils
  • Develop ecological restoration tools for degraded and/or carbon poor soils
  • Devise low cost, and natural strategies to fix carbon in soils
  • Devise solutions for the sustainable production of energy from biomas


  • Yousef, L.F., Wojno M.,Dick W.A., Dick, R.P. (2012). Lipid profiling of the soybean pathogen Phytophthora sojae using Fatty Acid Methyl Esters (FAME). Fungal Biology 116, 613-619.
  • Yousef, L.F, Dick, W.A., Dick R.P. (2011). Use of a 15N-tracer method as a tool to indicate the assimialtion of Elicitin-Sterol complexes by Phytophthora sojae. International Journal of Biology 3,119-127.
  • Yousef, L.F, Yousef A.F., Mymryk J.S., Dick,W.A., Richard, R.P. (2009). Stigmasterol and Cholesterol Regulate the Expression of Elicitin Genes inPhytophthora sojae. Journal of Chemical Ecology 35,824-832.
  • Yousef, L.F and Bernards, M.A. (2006). In vitro metabolism of ginsenosides by the ginseng root pathogen Pythium irregulare. Phytochemistry 67, 1740-1749.
  • Bernards, M.A., Yousef, L.F. and Nicol, R.W. (2006) The allelopathic potential of ginsenosides. In: Allelochemicals: Biological Control of Plant Pathogens and Diseases (Inderjit and Mukerji, K.G., Eds). Springer Dordrecht The Netherlands. Pp 157-175.
  • Nicol, R.W., Yousef, L.F., Traquair, J.A. and Bernards, M.A. (2003). Ginsenosides stimulate the growth of soilborne pathogens of American ginseng.Phytochemistry 64, 257-264