Prof. Ahmed Hassanali


Department of Chemistry
P.O. Box 43844, -00100,

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Professor (Chemical Ecology & Bioprospecting), School of Pure & Applied Sciences, Kenyatta University, Nairobi, Kenya

(1946-1961) Primary, Secondary & A-level: Pemba & Unguja
1962-1964: B.Sc (General), University of Adelaide (Australia)
1965: B.Sc (Hons, 1st Class), 1st Position (shared with another student), University of Adelaide (Australia)
1967-9: PhD, University of Nottingham (UK)
Project & Thesis – The Chemistry of some Antibiotics


2008 (Nov) to date Professor, School of Pure and Applied Sciences, Kenyatta University, Nairobi, Kenya
1995 (June) -1997 (May): Deputy Director General (Research), ICIPE
1993 – 2006: Principal Scientist & Head, Behavioural & Chemical Ecology Department, and Leader of Locust & Migrant Pests, Programme
ICIPE 1983 - 1992: Senior (and from 1989 Principal) Research Scientist & Head, Chemistry & Biochemistry Research Unit, ICIPE 1981 - 1983: Senior Research Scientist, Chemistry and Bioassay Research Unit, ICIPE
1978 - 1984: Professor of Chemistry, University of Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania
1974 - 1978: Associate Professor, Chemistry Department, University of Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania
1972 - 1974: Senior Lecturer, Chemistry Department, University of
Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania
1969 - 1972: Lecturer, Chemistry Department, University of Dar-es- Salaam
1967 - 1969: Special Assistant Lecturer in Physical Chemistry (Rockefeller Staff Development Programme), University of Dar-es-Salaam
1966: Research Assistant, Chemistry Department, University of Dar-es-Salaam


2004: Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa), Kenyatta University, Kenya
1989: Elected Fellow, African Academy of Sciences
1984 (Sept-Nov): Sir John Pringle Exchange Fellowship, Rothamsted
Station, England
1974 - 1975: Royal Society Fellowship for Sabbatical at University of Sussex, UK
1967 - 1969: UNESCO fellowship to undertake PhD at the University of Nottingham, UK
1965: University of Adelaide, shared top position with another Honours student, and awarded the Chemistry Prize
1962 - 1965: Special Commonwealth African Aid Programme (SCAAP) Fellowship, (University of Adelaide, Australia)
2013: Acta Tropica Certificate of Excellence in Reviewing.


Desert Locust. Pheromones mediating aggregation, synchronous maturation and communal oviposition in the gregarious phase; cross-stage pheromonal effects and exploitation of these novel effects in the subtle control of hopper bands and adult aggregations; phase dynamics and the role of semiochemicals and environmental factors in the genesis of gregarious populations and in the developments of outbreaks; hope to initiate similar studies on other African locust species and the African armyworm. [33 publications]

Malaria Vectors. The chemical ecology of oviposition, vector-plant relationships (including sourcing for sugars and for secondary compounds for self-medication), and blood seeking behaviour of Anopheles gambiae; relative roles of the two in vectorial dynamics, identification of mediating signals and explore their potential in behavioural manipulations of the insects; spatial relations of alternative hosts of zoophilic An. arabiensis (theoretical treatment and experimental validation) and the combined use of zoophilic diversion (‘pull’) and repellent fumigants (‘push’) in the control of this mosquito species.
[48 publications]

Tsetse flies and ticks. (a) The chemical ecology of host selection and location of savannah and riverine tsetse flies; identification of attractants from preferred hosts (e.g. buffalo and cattle for the former and monitor lizards for the latter) and repellents from refractory wild life (e.g. waterbuck); exploitation of these semiochemicals in the development of ‘pull’, ‘push’ and ‘push-pull’ tsetse control technologies.
(b) Studies on the (i) feeding site location behaviour of Rhipicephalus appendiculatus (vector of the livestock disease, East Coast Fever) and identification of the mediating chemical signals; (ii) behavioural manipulative studies to control this tick and Amblyomma variegatum (vector of heartwater) using attractive/repellent semiochemicals and acaricides or fungal pathogens. [38 publications]

Plant Pests Chemical Ecology. Development of ‘push-pull’ (and elucidation of the science underlying the effects of the two components) tactics for controlling stem borers of maize, sorghum and millet. Elucidation of the allelopathic basis of striga-controlling properties of Desmodium spp.; identification of the specific genomic traits of Desmodium spp. associated with allelopathic agents and explore the possibility of transferring these to food legumes. [35 publications]

Natural Products. Bioprospecting from plants with (i) mosquito/tick repellent essential oils; (ii) evaluation of traditional methods of using mosquito repellents plants and exploring improvements thereof through screenhouse behavioural studies and analyses of expelled fumigants, development of promising products for commercialization; (ii) mosquito larvicidal and acaricidal constituents; (iii) essential oil based post-harvest protectants and development of simple technologies for adoption by rural communities; (iv) trypanocidal constituents; and (v) downstream development of Artemisia annua as mosquito repellent and for malaria therapy.
[65 publications]

Other Research. Biopesticide-termite interactions, polyphenols and performance of tea plants, reaction of lead tetra-acetate with amides, etc.
[13 publications]

Symposia Proceedings, Invited Chapter Contributions, etc. On above areas of Research & Development. [34 publications]


“Comparison of volatile blends and nucleotide sequences of two Beauvaria bassiana isolates of different virulence and repellency toward the termite Macrotermes michaelseni” (2013). David M. Mburu, N. K. Maniania and Ahmed Hassanali. J. Chem Ecology, 39 (1), 101-108.

“Time-course effects of Vitex schiliebenii (Varbenacea) solvent extracts on Anopheles gambiae giles s.s. larvae under simulated semi-field conditions” (2013). Mokua G. Nyamoita, Innocent Ester, Mbwambo H. Zachary, Lwande Wilber, Bwire J. Ochola, Hassanali Ahmed. Novus Natural Science Research, 2 (1), 27-34.

“Differential attractiveness of human foot odours to Anopheles gambiae Giles sensu stricto (Diptera: Culicidae) and variation in their chemical Acta Tropica composition” (2013). M.O. Omolo, B. Njiru, I.O.Ndiege, R.M.Musau, A Hassanali., 128, 144-148.
“Responses of Bactrocera invadens (Diptera:Tephritidae) to Volatile Emissions of Fruits from Three Hosts” (2013). Fikira Kimbokota, Peter George Nganga Njagi, Baldwyn Torto, Sunday Ekesi, Ahmed Hassanali. Journal of Biology, Agriculture and Healthcare, 3(6), 53-60.

"Chemical composition and mosquito repellency of essential oil of Conyza newii propagated in different geographical locations of Kenya" (2014). Mayeku WP1, Omollo NI, Odalo OJ, Hassanali A. Medical and Veterinary Entomology, 28(3):253-6. doi: 10.1111/mve.12039.

“Repellent Activities of Essential Oils of Some Plants Used Traditionally to Control the Brown Ear Tick, Rhipicephalus appendiculatus’ (2014). Wycliffe Wanzala, Ahmed Hassanali, Wolfgang Richard Mukabana and Willem Takken. Journal of Parasitology Research. Article ID 434506, 10 pages.

“Thalictramine, A New Alkaloid from Thalictrum rhyncocarpum and its Anti-bacteria Activity” (2014). Wafula Philip Mayeku, Odalo Josiah, Ahmed Hassanali, Benard Kiremire, Christian Hertweck. Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research, 6 (11):1-5.

“Whole Plant Approaches to Therapeutic Use of Artemisia annua L. (Asteraceae)” (2014). Pamela Weathers, Kirsten Reed, Ahmed Hassanali, Pierre Lutgen and Patrick Ogwang Engeu. In: ‘Artemisia annua - Pharmacology and Biotechnology’ Ed. Tariq Aftab, Jorge F.S. Ferreira, M. Masroor A. Khan, and M. Naeem, ISBN: 978-3-642-41026-0 (Print); 978-3-642-41027-7 © Springer, Part of Springer.

“Repellency of tsetse-refractory waterbuck (Kobus defassa) body odour to Glossina pallidipes (Diptera: Glossinidae): Assessment of relative contribution of different classes and individual constituents (2015). Mathew K. Bett, Rajinder K. Saini, Ahmed Hassanali. Acta Tropica 146, 17–24.

“Constituents of essential oils from three plant species used in traditional medicine and insect control in Tanzania” (2015). Innocent Ester and Ahmed Hassanali. Journal of Herbs, Spices & Medicinal Plants 21:3, 219-229.


13 in all, including the following:

“Composition for attracting blood-feeding insects” US Patent No US 8,734, 773 B2 (May 2014). Ahmed Hassanali, Isaiah Ndiege, Maurice V Omolo, Basilio N Njiru and Peter GN Njagi.

Major Supervisor of > 50 PhD students from different parts of Africa.
Co-supervisor of >10 other PhD students & ~40 MSc students.
Currently supervising 8 PhD students.
Postdoctoral Interns: 8 from different parts of Africa.


 Treasurer (1970-71) and Secretary (1972-73) of the Tanzania Branch, (now defunct) East African Academy.
 Treasurer, African Academy of Sciences 1988 - 1994.
 Chemistry Chairman, National Examination Council, Tanzania early 1970's.
 Chairman, Chemistry Committee, National Bureau of Standards, Tanzania, 1977 1981.
 Book reviews:
- Herbicides (Progress in Pesticide Biochemistry and Toxicology Vol.6, John Wiley & Sons, 1987) in Insect Sci. Applic. 9(3), 427 8, 1988.
Environmental Fate of Pesticides (Progress in Pesticide Biochemistry and Toxicology Vol.7, John Wiley & Sons, 1990) in Insect Sci. Applic, 1990, 11 (6), 917 918.
 "Protection of R & D Innovations: The Patent and Licensing System";
Contribution to Financial and Administrative Management of Research Projects in Eastern and Southern Africa (FAMESA) Manual on "Research and Development Institute Client Relationship", December, 1990, ICIPE Science Press.
 Organization of conferences: International Neem Conference (Nairobi, l986), CHEMRAWN (Nairobi, l988), Patent meetings (Nairobi, 1985 & l987), Chemistry Conference (Nairobi, l983), International Congress of Entomology in Durban, 2008, etc.
 Guest Editorials, "African Universities: Addressing the Crisis" Discovery & Innovation, 3 (4), 4 6, 1991; “Locusts and Aggregating Grasshoppers in Africa: Need for a Fresh Paradigm” Discovery & Innovation, 12 (1/2) 1-3, 2000.
 Editor, African Academy of Sciences Newsletter, WHYDAH, 1992 3.
 Councillor of the International Society of Chemical Ecology from 1995-8.
 Served as a member of the Editorial Boards of Journal of Chemical Ecology (1994-2007), Insect Science and Application and Discovery & Innovation; currently on editorial board of (i) Acta Tropica, (ii) International Journal of Tropical Insect Science, and (iii) Discovery & Innovation
 Elected and served as a member of the Council for the International Congresses of Entomology (2003-8).
 Currently, a member of International Advisory Board of State University of Zanzibar (SUZA).


Philosophy, Science and Religion; Socio-economics of development and under-development; Exploring multi-layered meaning of different messages of the Holy Qur’an; Classical supplications;‘Sufi’ philosophy and poetry.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 21 September 2016 07:19

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