Dr Yusuf Deeni

Senior Lecturer

School School of Science, Engineering and Technology

Department Division of Science

Contact info

+44 (0)1382 30 8672

Biography

I’m a Translational Researcher and a Senior Lecturer in Biotechnology and Biological Sciences. I’m also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology.

Previously, I held academic and research positions at the Bayero University, Nigeria and at the Biomedical Research Institute at the University of Dundee. 

My research in molecular systems pharmacology is essentially about understanding and overcoming drug and chemical resistance including anticancer, antimicrobial, antimalarial, and insecticide/pesticide resistances. I use molecular and biochemical techniques to assess the impact of drugs and environmental toxicants on cellular defence, disease and survival.

My current research interests include investigating malaria control through targeting mosquito defence systems and investigating the role of the antioxidant response, the DNA damage response and the hypoxia response pathways in the etiology and treatment of cancer.  I’m currently collaborating with the School of Tropical Medicine in Liverpool, the University of Edinburgh, the University of St. Andrews, and the Biomedical Research Institute, University of Dundee. 

I am a member of a multidisciplinary research team based at Abertay which uses experimental and modelling approaches to examine complex problems which impact on everyday life.  

I speak Hausa, English, and some Arabic and French.

Professional Qualifications:

1981    BSc (Honours, Cum Laude) Biological Sciences, Savannah State University, Savannah, USA

1989    MSc Biology (Microbiology), Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria

1998    PhD Molecular Biology (Pharmacology/Toxicology), University of Dundee,  Dundee, Scotland, UK

Professional Employment History:

1983 – 1985    Education Officer, Kano State, Kano, Nigeria

1985 – 1986    Higher Education Officer, Kano State, Kano, Nigeria

1986 – 1989    Inspector of Education, Kano State, Kano, Nigeria

1989 – 1991    Assistant Lecturer, Biological Sciences, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria

1991 – 1998    Lecturer, Biological Sciences, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria

1998 – 2005    Postdoctoral Research Associate, BRC, University of Dundee, Scotland, UK

2005 – 2007    Principal Investigator, Biomedical Research Institute, University of Dundee, Scotland, UK

2007 - 2014     Lecturer in Biotechnology & Biological Sciences, University of Abertay Dundee, Dundee, Scotland, UK

2014 - Now      Senior Lecturer in Biotechnology & Biological Sciences, Abertay University, Dundee, Scotland, UK

I teach undergraduate and postgraduate courses in Biotechnology, Bioinformatics, Biomedical Sciences and Forensic Science. Specific subject areas include: Analytical Biotechnology, Biotechniques, Molecular and Cellular Biology, Structural and Functional Genomics/Proteomics, Molecular Carcinogenesis, Pharmacogenetic/Pharmacogenomics and Perspectives in Biotechnology.

These aspects are covered in the past and current modules I teach:

Past:

BI0704A Professional Skills,
BI0805A Techniques & Skills 2A,
BI0903A Molecular & Cell Biology: Molecular Genetics,
BI0911A Applied Molecular & Cell Biology,
BI1003A Molecular & Cell Biology: Genome Structure & Function 4,
BI1004A Contemporary & Industrial Biotechnology & Biomedical Science,
BI1005A Techniques & Skills,
BI1006A Honours Project,
BI1008A BMS Honours Project,
BI1009A Project Skills,
BI1101 Perspectives of Biotechnology,
BI1102A Analytical Biotechnology,
BI1104A Biotechnology Case Review,
BI1106A Placement Research Project (MSc Biotechnology),
BI1114A MSc Bioinformatics Project & Dissertation,
BI1115A Molecular Techniques,
BI1116A Structural & Functional Genomics,
BI1119A Introduction to
BI1121A Research Project (MSc Renewable Bio-Energy), Bioinformatics Techniques,
BI1123A Molecular & Cellular Biology 5:
HS0916 Essential Pharmacology for Biomedical Sciences, Genome Structure & Function,
HS1003A Molecular Genetics of Human Disease,
HS1006A Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology,
HS1104A Human Disease Molecular Genetics,
HS1106A Medical Pharmacology & Toxicology

Current:

LSC101 Biology 1: Biology Principles and Practice

LSC252 Cell Biology & Physiology

LSC253 Medical Microbiology

LSC401 Project Research Methods

ELE008 Communicating Science

LSC201 Molecular Biology and Genetics

LSC304 Perspectives in the Life Sciences Industry

LSC306 Test-tube to tablet

LSC401 Literature Review

LSC402 Honours Project

 

Drug Discovery and Development (Cancer & Tropical Diseases, including Computational/Mathematical Modelling), Protein Engineering, Applied Pharmaceutical and Environmental Biotechnology, Renewable Bio-Energy.

I am a member of SIMBIOS a multidisciplinary research team using systems approaches to complex ecological, biological & environmental problems. SIMBIOS focuses on the emergence of (i) soil ecosystem functioning from the microscopic complexity of soils and (ii) tumours in tissue from cell.

I am interested in Translational Research were current focus is on integrated approach of combining experimental analyses and bioinformatics (mathematical & computer modelling). I apply molecular and biochemical techniques (quantitative, integrative and systems biology) to assess the impact of xenobiotics (drugs) and other environmental toxicants on cellular or organismal intrinsic and adaptive responses in defence, disease and survival. Specific current projects themes include:

1. Investigate the biological roles of the DNA damage response and the antioxidant response pathways in the aetiology and treatment of cancer

2. Investigate Malaria Vector Control: Ecological Studies and Targeting the mosquito (Anopheles gambiae; Anopheles funestus) defence enzymes system to overcome pesticide resistance.

3. Investigate Sorghum and its utilisation as alternative renewable energy source

These focused research themes will encompass a number of sub-themes aimed at:

  • Gene Regulation, Expression Profiling and Disease Biomarker Identification
  • Screening and Validation of Target Small Molecule to Treat Diseases(s)
  • Cell and Organismal Model for Pharmacology and Toxicology
  • Protein-Enzyme/Metabolic Engineering
  • System Network and  Biology

Current Collaborations:

Simon Langdon & David Harrison, Breakthrough Research Unit, Division of Pathology, College of Medicine & Veterinary Medicine, University of Edinburgh.

Roland Wolf & Gillian Smith, Biomedical Research Institute, Ninewells Hospital & Medical School, University of Dundee. http://www.dundee.ac.uk/medschool/biomedical-research/

Mark J Paine, School of Tropical Medicine, University of Liverpool http://www.liv.ac.uk/lstm/groups/vector.htm

Current Funding:

Carnegie Trust http://www.carnegie-trust.org/

Publications

2006 – Now:

Dickmann LJ, Deeni Y, Smith G and Wolf CR (2006) Identification of CYP2S1 ligands. Drug Metabolism Reviews 38:56

Gillian Smith, Murray J.V. Willkie, Yusuf Y. Deeni, Peter M. Farr, James Ferguson, C. Roland Wolf and Sally H. Ibbotson (2007). Melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) genotype influences erythemal sensitivity to PUVA. British J Dermatology 155:240

Gillian Smith, Murray J.V. Willkie, Yusuf Y. Deeni, Peter M. Farr, James Ferguson, C. Roland Wolf and Sally H. Ibbotson (2007). Melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) genotype influences erythemal sensitivity to psoralen-ultraviolet A photochemotherapy. British J Dermatology 157:1230-1234

Deeni, Y. Y. (2009) Bioinformatics: an Integrated Approach to Drug Discovery, in The Research Continuum in Natural Products Drug Discovery, Conference Book, NIPRD, Abuja, pp. 11

Nasidi, M., Akunna, J. C., Deeni, Y. Y., Blackwood, D. J. and Walker, G. M.  2010. Bioethanol in Nigeria: comparative analysis of sugarcane and sweet sorghum as feedstock sources. Energy and Environmental Science. 3(10):1447-1457

Yusuf, Deeni and C. Roland , Wolf (2011) Enzyme and Protein Engineering: engineering a self-sufficient human cytochrome P450 monooxygenase system. Current Opinion in Biotechnology 22S: S15-S152.

Yusuf, Deeni, Muhammad, Nasidi, and Graeme, Walker (2011) The use of sorghum as a renewable energy biomass source. Current Opinion in Biotechnology 22S: S15-S152.

Bown J, Andrews PS, Deeni Y, Goltsov A, Idowu M, Polack FA, Sampson AT, Shovman M and Stepney S (2012) Engineering simulations for cancer systems biology; Curr Drug Targets (In Press)

Andrew J. Spiers*, Yusuf Deeni, Ayorinde O. Folorunso, Anna Koza, Olena Moshynets & Kamil Zawadzki  (2012) Cellulose expression amongst environmental pseudomonads Book 2", ISBN 980-953-307-487-5 (Ed.  Theo G.M. Van De Ven); (In Press)

Pre 2006

Deeni, Y.Y., Ibbotson, S.H., Friedberg, T.H., Woods, J.A., Ferguson, J., Wolf, C.R. and Smith, G (2004). Role of cytochrome P450 1B1 (CYP1B1) in psoralen metabolism and psoralen ultraviolet-A (PUVA) sensitivity. British J Dermatology 150:802

Smith, G., Wolf, C.R., Deeni, Y. Y., Dawe, R. S., Evans, A. T., Comrie, M. M., Ferguson, J. and Ibbotson, S. H. (2003) Cutaneous expression of cytochrome P450 CYP2S1: individuality in regulation by therapeutic agents for psoriasis and other skin diseases. Lancet 361: 1336 - 43.

Kawo, A. H. and Deeni, Y. Y. (2002): Microbial Ecological Studies on Getsi River- An Industrial Tributary of Jakara River, Kano, Nigeria. African Journal of Material and Natural Sciences, 2(2): 93- 97.

Deeni, Y. Y. and Sadiq, N. M. (2002) Antimicrobial properties and phytochemical constituents of the leaves of African mistletoe (Tapinanthus dodoneifolius (DC) Danser) (Loranthaceae): An ethnomedicinal plant of Hausaland, Northern Nigeria. J. Ethnopharmacology. 83(3) 235-40.

Deeni, Y. Y., Paine, M. J., Ayrton, A., Clarke, S. E., Chenery, R. and Wolf, C. R. (2001) Expression, purification, and characterisation of a human cytochrome P450 CYP2D6-NADPH cytochrome P450 reductase fusion protein. Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics. 396(1): 16-24.

Ding, S., Yao, D., Deeni, Y. Y., Burchell, B., Wolf, C. R. and Friedberg, T. (2001) Human NADPH-P450 oxidoreductase modulates the level of cytochrome P450 CYP2D6 holoprotein via haem oxygenase-dependent and -independent pathways. Biochemical J. 356(Pt 2): 613-9

Mukhtar, M. D. and Deeni, Y. Y. (1998): Microbiological and Physico-chemical studies on Salanta River, South Central Kano metropolitan. In A Book of sustainable utilization of aquatic wetland resources. Nigerian Association for Aquatic Science, University of Agriculture, Abeokuta Press. pp 241-251.

Mukhtar, M.D. and Deeni, Y.Y. (1995): Microbiological and physico-chemical studies of Salanta River, south-central Kano metropolis, Kano, Nigeria. Proceedings of the 9th/10th annual conference of the Nigerian Association for Aquatic Sciences (NAAS) held at the University of Agriculture Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria, 30th Nov. – 2nd Dec., 1995. pp 241-250.

Deeni, Y. Y. and Taura, A. M. (1995) Antimicrobial Susceptibility of Clinical Isolates of Enteric Bacteria in Kano, Nigeria. Orient J. Medicine 15: 10 – 15

Deeni, Y. Y. and Hussain, H. S. N. (1994) Screening Vernonia kotschyana for Antimicrobial Activity and Alkaloids. International J. Pharmacognosy 32:331 – 339

Deeni, Y. Y. and Hussain, H. S. N. (1991) Plants in Kano Ethnomedicine: Screening for Antimicrobial Activity and Alkaloids. International J. Pharmacognosy 29: 51 – 56

Deeni, Y. Y. and Hussain, H. S. N. (1991) Screening for Antimicrobial Activity and for Alkaloids of Nauclea latifolia. J. Ethnopharmacology 35: 91 – 96

 

More Information

Funding

In addition to internal UAD complementation, a number of funding mechanisms support my research :

2008 – 2010        £2,470; Malaria Vector Control: Cloning and Expression of Anopheles gambiae Glutathione Biosynthetic Defense Enzyme System, Carnegie Trust

2008 – 2010        £160,000; Cancer Project (Lead by Professor John Palfreyman), Anonymous Trust

2010 – 2012        £200,000; Cancer Project (Lead by Professor John Palfreyman), Anonymous Trust

2010 – 2013        £150,000 (with Professor GM Walker); Molecular and Biochemical Assessment of the effects of Environmental    Agroallied- and Petro-chemicals on the occurrence and distribution of Insecticides resistant Mosquitoes in Nigeria. PhD studentship, PTDF Nigeria

2011 – 2013        £150,000 (with Professor GM Walker); Bioethanol Production Potential from Indigenous Sweet Sorghum Crop for Utilization as Renewable Automotive Fuel in Nigeria; PhD studentship, PTDF Nigeria.

2012 – 2014        £120,000 (with Professor John Palfreyman); Regulation of Insecticide Defense and Resistance Gene(s) in Anopheles sp; PhD studentship, TETFunds Nigeria.

2012 – 2014        £120,000 (with Dr Andrew Spiers); Molecular Characterization of Insecticide Defense Genes of Field Captured Mosquitoes in Nigeria; PhD studentship, TETFunds Nigeria.

 

Esteem

Professional Activities:

2006 – Now     Referee/Reviewer

Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Insects Molecular Biology, Fitoterapia, Pharmaceutical Biology, International J. Environmental & Analytical Chemistry, Open Drug Metabolism J., Electronic J. Biotechnology, Electronic J. Biotechnology, Bioenergy Technology, J. Biochemical & Molecular Toxicology, Biochemical J. and Carcinogenesis.

2008 – Now     Editorial Board Membership

The Open Drug Metabolism Journal http://www.bentham.org/open/todmj/index.htm

Philosophic Nature Journal http://www.eilab.org/pn.html

Bayero Journal of Pure and Applied Sciences (BAJOPAS) http://ajol.info/index.php/bajopas.

2006 – Now     Professional Body Membership

Biochemical Society, International Society for the Study of Xenobiotics (ISSX), European Association for Cancer Research, European Biotechnology Thematic Network, Nigerian Society for Microbiology.

2009 – 2010    Distinction/Recognition

                        Resource Person to the National Institute for Health, Bethesda, USA

2009 – Now     Collaborators

Dr Simon Langdon, Edinburgh Cancer Research Centre, Western General Hospital, University of Edinburgh. http://www.ecrc.ed.ac.uk/

Dr Mark J Paine, School of Tropical Medicine, University of Liverpool http://www.liv.ac.uk/lstm/groups/vector.htm

Professor C Roland Wolf and Dr Gillian Smith, Biomedical Research Institute, Ninewells Hospital & Medical School, University of Dundee. http://www.dundee.ac.uk/biomedres/links.htm

Dr M D Mukhtar, Dr A Yayo and Dr M Y Gwarzo, Bayero University, Kano Nigeria. http://www.buk.edu.ng/

2006 – Now     Conferences

British Society for Investigative Dermatology Meeting,10-12 April 2006, University of Manchester, UK.

8th Annual BioDundee International Conference, 22-23 May 2008, Dundee

European Biotechnology Thematic Network Meeting, 4-7 September, 2008, Bratislava, Slovak Republic

International Conference, ‘Biomarkers in Personalised Medicine’, 23 April 2009, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh.

 ‘Biodiversity Themes’. Invited Speaker; “Medicinal Plants Diversity and Drug Discovery”, 2 May, 2009, Dundee Science Centre (Sensation), Dundee.

Workshop, ‘An Introduction to Commercial Skills for Life Scientists', 6-7 May, 2009 (BBRC funded) University of Dundee, Dundee.

 The RESEARCH CONTINUUM in Natural Products Drug Discovery, Invited Speaker, “Bioinformatics: An Integrated Approach to Drug Discovery”, 12-14 May 2009, (organised by NIH/NIAID of USA and NIPRD of Nigeria), Abuja, Nigeria.

Workshop on Renewable Energy (organised by Dundee Renewables with support from Tayside/Dundee City Council and The Scottish Enterprises), May 10th 2010, Dundee

Energy Industries Overview: Oil and Gas and Renewable Energy, 12 - 14 April 2011, King's College Conference Centre, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen.

European Biotechnology Congress, Invited speaker, International Advisory Committee Member & Editorial Review Member, 28 September-1 October, 2011, Istanbul, Turkey.

35th Annual Conference& Annual General Meeting of the Nigerian Society for Microbiology NSM-BUK 2011. Invited Lead Speaker, Microbes in Human Development: Microbiology the Steering to Drive Biotechnological Development, 9-13 October, 2011, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria.

Knowledge Exchange

In addition to internal UAD complementation, a number of funding mechanisms support my research :

2008 – 2010        £2,470; Malaria Vector Control: Cloning and Expression of Anopheles gambiae Glutathione Biosynthetic Defence Enzyme System, Carnegie Trust

2008 – 2010        £160,000; Cancer Project (Lead by Professor John Palfreyman), Anonymous Trust

2010 – 2012        £200,000; Cancer Project (Lead by Professor John Palfreyman), Anonymous Trust

2010 – 2013        £150,000 (with Professor GM Walker); Molecular and Biochemical Assessment of the effects of Environmental    Agroallied- and Petro-chemicals on the occurrence and distribution of Insecticides resistant Mosquitoes in Nigeria. PhD studentship, PTDF Nigeria

2011 – 2013        £150,000 (with Professor GM Walker); Bioethanol Production Potential from Indigenous Sweet Sorghum Crop for Utilization as Renewable Automotive Fuel in Nigeria; PhD studentship, PTDF Nigeria.

2012 – 2014        £120,000 (with Professor John Palfreyman); Regulation of Insecticide Defense and Resistance Gene(s) in Anopheles sp; PhD studentship, TETFunds Nigeria.

2012 – 2014        £120,000 (with Dr Andrew Spiers); Molecular Characterization of Insecticide Defense Genes of Field Captured Mosquitoes in Nigeria; PhD studentship, TETFunds Nigeria.

 

Meet the rest of the team

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Dr Kimberley Bennett

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Dr Kevin Smith

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