Abdelali (Ali) Hannoufa, Ph.D.

Image Mathieu Rioux
Research Scientist, Adjunct Professor

Research Scientist and Adjunct Professor in Genomics and Biotechnology

Current research and/or projects

  1. Discovery Research towards crop Improvement 

  2. Abiotic stress response in plants 

  3. RNAi Trap Plants for Horticulture 

  4. Novel Biological for Mitigation of Abiotic Stresses in Forage Legumes and Reduced Methane Emissions by Ruminants

  5. Development of IPM tools using genomic and ecological approaches for the control of insect pests in greenhouses 

  6. Improving productivity and persistence of alfalfa under extreme weather events 

Education and awards

Ph.D.  in Plant Molecular Biology, York University, 1996

M.Sc. in Plant Biochemistry, Concordia University, 1991

Key publications

  1. Feyissa, B.A., Amyot, L., Nasrollahi, V., Papadopoulos, Y., Kohalmi, S.E., Hannoufa, A. (2021). Involvement of the miR156/SPL module in flooding response in Medicago sativa, 11(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-82450-7

    2021 - View publication details

  2. Lei, Y., Hannoufa, A., Yu, P. (2020). Overexpression of miR156 and Silencing SPL6RNAi and SPL13RNAi Genes in Medicago sativa on the Changes of Carbohydrate Physiochemical, Fermentation, and Nutritional Profiles, 68(49), 14540-14548. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.0c02508

    2020 - View publication details

  3. Arshad, M., Puri, A., Simkovich, A.J., Renaud, J., Gruber, M.Y., Marsolais, F., Hannoufa, A. (2020). Label-free quantitative proteomic analysis of alfalfa in response to microRNA156 under high temperature, 21(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12864-020-07161-1

    2020 - View publication details

  4. Subedi U, Burton Hughes K, Dhariwal G, Kader K, Hannoufa A, Acharya S, Singer SD. Mutation of MsSPL8 alleles via CRISPR/Cas9-mediated genome editing leads to superior abiotic stress resiliency and distinct morphological alterations in alfalfa. 1st International Electronic Conference on Plant Science, Dec. 1 – 15, 2020

    2020 - View publication details

  5. Feyissa, B.A., Renaud, J., Nasrollahi, V., Kohalmi, S.E., Hannoufa, A. (2020). Transcriptome-IPMS analysis reveals a tissue-dependent miR156/SPL13 regulatory mechanism in alfalfa drought tolerance, 21(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12864-020-07118-4

    2020 - View publication details

  6. Hanly, A., Karagiannis, J., Lu, Q.S.M., Tian, L., Hannoufa, A. (2020). Characterization of the role of SPL9 in drought stress tolerance in medicago sativa, 21(17), 1-14. http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms21176003

    2020 - View publication details

  7. Singer SD, Subedi U, Feyissa BA, Dhariwal GK, Burton Hughes K, Kader K, Hannoufa A, Acharya S. Comparative physiological, biochemical and transcriptomic analyses of Medicago sativa subsp. falcata and subsp. sativa in the context of drought tolerance. Plant Biology Worldwide Summit 2020, virtual conference, July 27 – 31, 2020

    2020 - View publication details

  8. Singer SD, Burton Hughes K, Dhariwal GK, Subedi U, Kader K, Hannoufa A, Acharya S. CRISPR/Cas9-mediated mutation of alfalfa SQUAMOSA PROMOTER-BINDING-LIKE8 alleles leads to distinct morphological alterations. Plant Biology Worldwide Summit 2020, virtual conference, July 27 – 31, 2020

    2020 - View publication details

  9. Hannoufa A, Feyissa BA, Kohalmi SE (2020) Medicago sativa L (alfalfa) employs molecular physiological strategies to regulate drought response through the miR156-SPL13-DFR module. XXVIII Plant and Animal Genome Conference, San Diego, CA, USA, January 11-15, 2020

    2020 - View publication details

  10. Lei, Y., Hannoufa, A., Wang, Y., Christensen, D., Yu, P. (2019). Effects of silencing TT8 and HB12 on in vitro nutrients degradation and VFA production in relation to molecular structures of alfalfa (Medicago sativa), 99(15), 6850-6858. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jsfa.9970

    2019 - View publication details

  11. Boukari, N., Jelali, N., Renaud, J.B., Youssef, R.B., Abdelly, C., Hannoufa, A. (2019). Salicylic acid seed priming improves tolerance to salinity, iron deficiency and their combined effect in two ecotypes of Alfalfa, 167 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envexpbot.2019.103820

    2019 - View publication details

  12. Feyissa, B.A., Arshad, M., Gruber, M.Y., Kohalmi, S.E., Hannoufa, A. (2019). The interplay between miR156/SPL13 and DFR/WD40-1 regulate drought tolerance in alfalfa, 19(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12870-019-2059-5

    2019 - View publication details

  13. Hanly, A, Amyot L, Karagiannis J., B.. Hannoufa (2019) Characterization of SPL9 role in drought stress tolerance in Medicago sativa. Plant Canada 2019, Communicating Innovation in Science, Guelph, Ontario, July 7-10, 2019

    2019 - View publication details

  14. Feyissa BA, Papadopoulos Y, Kohalmi SE, Hannoufa A (2019) Flooding tolerance is regulated through the MiR156/SPL13 module in Medicago sativa. Plant Canada 2019, Communicating Innovation in Science, Guelph, Ontario, July 7-10, 2019 (student received Plant Canada best presentation award).

    2019 - View publication details

  15. Amyot L, McDowell T; Martin S; Renaud J; Gruber M; Hannoufa A (2019) Natural variation in glucosinolate profiles in Camelina sativa and its wild relatives. Plant Canada 2019, Communicating Innovation in Science, Guelph, Ontario, July 7-10, 2019

    2019 - View publication details

  16. Lei, Y., Hannoufa, A., Prates, L.L., Christensen, D., Wang, Y., Yu, P. (2019). Silencing TT8 and HB12 Decreased Protein Degradation and Digestion, Microbial Synthesis, and Metabolic Protein in Relation to Molecular Structures of Alfalfa (Medicago sativa), 67(28), 7898-7907. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.9b02317

    2019 - View publication details

  17. Ben-Abdallah, S., Cáceres, L.A., Wang, Z., Renaud, B.J., Lachâal, M., Karray-Bouraoui, N., Hannoufa, A., Scott, I.M. (2019). Host plant defenses of black (Solanum nigrum L.) and red nightshade (Solanum villosum Mill.) against specialist Solanaceae herbivore Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say), 101(2), http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/arch.21550

    2019 - View publication details

  18. Ben-Abdallah, S., Zorrig, W., Amyot, L., Renaud, J., Hannoufa, A., Lachâal, M., Karray-Bouraoui, N. (2019). Potential production of polyphenols, carotenoids and glycoalkaloids in Solanum villosum Mill. under salt stress, 74(3), 309-324. http://dx.doi.org/10.2478/s11756-018-00166-y

    2019 - View publication details

  19. Amyot, L., McDowell, T., Martin, S.L., Renaud, J., Gruber, M.Y., Hannoufa, A. (2019). Assessment of Antinutritional Compounds and Chemotaxonomic Relationships between Camelina sativa and Its Wild Relatives, 67(3), 796-806. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.8b04724

    2019 - View publication details

  20. Feyissa BA; Arshad M, Kohalmi SE, Hannoufa A (2018) SPL13 and WD40-1 regulate DFR to enhance anthocyanin biosynthesis for stress tolerance in Medicago sativa. Eastern Regional meeting of the Canadian Society of Plant Biologists. November 24, 2018

    2018 - View publication details

Research facility

1391 Sandford Street
London, ON N5V 4T3


Adjunct Professor – University of Western Ontario

Member – University of Saskatchewan, College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies

Vice President – Canadian Association for Plant Biotechnology

Member, Canadian Society of Plant Biologists