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Dr. Dilawar Khan
Assistant Professor
Healthcare Biotechnology

National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST)
NUST Campus H-12, Islamabad
Tel : +92-051-9085-6139

Cancer Stem cells, Cancer Signalling, Biotechnology/Molecular Biology

PhD Cancer Biology, Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany

Personal data

Name: Dilawar Khan
Date of Birth: April 11, 1981
Place of Birth: Kurram Agency, FATA, Pakistan

Academic education

September, 2017-   Assistant Professor  
                                 Department of Healthcare Biotechnology, Atta-ur-Rahman   School of Applied Biosciences, National University of Science and Technology,                                         Islamabad, Pakistan

May, 2017          Post-Doctoral Research Fellow  
                                 Centre for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research, The Agha Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan

2012- 2016:    Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)  
                                  Department of Haematology, Faculty of Medicine, Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany 
                          “Role of Activated Signalling Pathways for the t(15;17)-PML/RAR alpha and t(6;9)DEK/CAN-Induced Leukaemogenesis” 

2009- 2011:    Social Organiser, SRSP, Peshawar 

2006-2008     Master of Philosophy (M. Phil) in Molecular Biology 
                                  Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad (Pakistan) 
                           “A Study of Families with Human Hereditary Skin Disorders “

2001-2005     Bachelor of Biotechnology (Hons, 4 years programme) 
                                  Center of Biotechnology, University of Peshawar 

Member of National Curriculum Review Committee, Higher Education Commission of Pakistan
Member of International Student/Faculty Exchange Programme Committee, ASAB, NUST
Member of Quality Assurance Committee ASAB, NUST
Member of BS Project Evaluation Committee 2018

Scientific meeting organization

Organizer of ASAB-2018 Open House


2018, 2nd Runner up prize, FICS, 2018, NUST
2012-2016, HEC, PhD Fellowship for Germany
2001-2005, award of merit scholarship throughout undergraduate studies
Research in the Dr. Khan group is centered on the two major clinical challenges in the treatment of cancer: the eradication of cancer stem cells (CSCs) and adaptive resistance to current therapeutics. Tumors contain immature cells so called cancer stem cells which are capable of limitless self-renewal and may be responsible for tumor progression, maintenance and relapse after treatment resistance. These cancer stem cells must be ultimately eradicated with novel therapeutic strategies for long-lasting cancer treatment. Beside CSCs, resistance to therapy including potent and selective targeted agents remains the major clinical challenge in various cancers. By using a variety of cellular, biochemical and genetic approaches, we are interested in basic research into the molecular and cellular biology of cancer with special emphasis in identifying and targeting the disease-promoting signaling pathways that control the development of CSCs and the resistance they provide to current therapeutics. Our aim is to develop/train the next generation world class researchers in the field of cancer biology and link laboratory to the clinic, to introduce new approaches to screening, prevention and treatment of cancer.

Focus of the laboratory

Biology of Cancer Stem Cells
Oncogenic Signal Transduction
Cancer Drugs Discovery
Stem cells in Regenerative Medicine

Laboratory members

Mariam Fatima (MS student)
Najia Tahir (BS student)
Maria Sharif (BS student)
Heshma Ejaz (BS student)
Sundus Fahim (BS student)

Current Project

Molecular targeting of cancer stem cells in Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Research Funding

Higher Education Commission of Pakistan (HEC)

Roos J, Oancea C, Heinssmann M, Khan D, Held H, Kahnt AS, Capelo R, la Buscató E, Proschak E, Puccetti E, Steinhilber D, Fleming I, Maier TJ, Ruthardt M. (2014) 5 Lipoxygenase is a candidate target for therapeutic management of stem cell-like cells in acute myeloid leukemia. Cancer Res. 2014 Sep 15; 74(18):5244-55.

Claudia Chiriches, PhD, Dilawar Khan, PhD, Nathalie Guillen, PhD, Michal Rokicki, Carol Guy, Afsar Mian, PhD, Oliver G. Ottmann, MD and Martin Ruthardt, (2016) A Network of Activated Cancer Signaling Pathways in High Risk Subgroup of Acute Myeloid Leukemia Targetable by SRC-Kinase Inhibitors

Dilawar Khan, Jessica Roos , Timo Frömel , Dieter Steinhilber , Ingrid Fleming, Thorsten Maier and Martin Ruthardt (2013) Role of Soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH), Cyclooxygenase (COX) and 5 Lipoxygenase (5 LO) in the regulation of normal and malignant Hematopoiesis 
           Poster presentation 5th UCT science day, University Clinic, Frankfurt, Germany
Dr. Khan is involved in teaching undergraduate and postgraduate courses 

Undergraduate courses

Clinical Genetics
Clinical Immunology

Postgraduate courses (MS/PhD)

General and Molecular Immunology