The Cereal Genetics and Genomics Group

Group Picture web

Michael Abrouk

Postdoctoral Fellows

Postdoctoral Fellow


Bldg.2, Level3, Office 3266-WS09

Research Interests

My research interest is focused on cereal genomics and evolution. Using different approaches such as comparative analysis and NGS technologies, I mainly investigated the structural changes which occurred during the evolution of these complex plant genomes. I am also involved in the International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium (IWGSC) in order to produce and characterize the first reference sequence of hexaploid wheat genome.
At KAUST, I will work on the ’10 Wheat Genomes Project’ aiming to produce ten high-quality genomes for the characterization of the diversity among different wheat cultivars and to establish a ‘pan-genome’.

Selected Publications

  • The in silico identification and characterization of a bread wheat/Triticum militinae introgression line. Abrouk, M., B. Balcarkova, H. Simkova, E. Kominkova, M. M. Martis, I. Jakobson, L. Timofejeva, E. Rey, J. Vrana, A. Kilian, K. Jarve, J. Dolezel and M. Valarik (2017). Plant Biotechnology Journal 15(2): 249-256.
  • A High Resolution Radiation Hybrid Map of Wheat Chromosome 4A. Balcarkova, B., Z. Frenkel, M. Skopova, M. Abrouk, A. Kumar, S. Chao, S. F. Kianian, E. Akhunov, A. B. Korol, J. Dolezel and M. Valarik (2017). Frontiers in Plant Science 7.
  • Grass MicroRNA Gene Paleohistory Unveils New Insights into Gene Dosage Balance in Subgenome Partitioning after Whole-Genome Duplication. Abrouk, M., R. Zhang, F. Murat, A. Li, C. Pont, L. Mao and J. Salse (2012). Plant Cell 24(5): 1776-1792.
  • The genome of Theobroma cacao. Argout, X., J. Salse, J.-M. Aury, M. J. Guiltinan, G. Droc, J. Gouzy, M. Allegre, C. Chaparro, T. Legavre, S. N. Maximova, M. Abrouk, F. Murat, O. Fouet, J. Poulain, M. Ruiz, Y. Roguet, M. Rodier-Goud, J. F. Barbosa-Neto, F. Sabot, D. Kudrna, J. S. S. Ammiraju, S. C. Schuster, J. E. Carlson, E. Sallet, T. Schiex, A. Dievart, M. Kramer, L. Gelley, Z. Shi, A. Berard, C. Viot, M. Boccara, A. M. Risterucci, V. Guignon, X. Sabau, M. J. Axtell, Z. Ma, Y. Zhang, S. Brown, M. Bourge, W. Golser, X. Song, D. Clement, R. Rivallan, M. Tahi, J. M. Akaza, B. Pitollat, K. Gramacho, A. D'Hont, D. Brunel, D. Infante, I. Kebe, P. Costet, R. Wing, W. R. McCombie, E. Guiderdoni, F. Quetier, O. Panaud, P. Wincker, S. Bocs and C. Lanaud (2011). Nature Genetics 43(2): 101-108.
  • Palaeogenomics of plants: synteny-based modelling of extinct ancestors. Abrouk, M., F. Murat, C. Pont, J. Messing, S. Jackson, T. Faraut, E. Tannier, C. Plomion, R. Cooke, C. Feuillet and J. Salse (2010). Trends in Plant Science 15(9): 479-487.
  • Genome sequencing and analysis of the model grass Brachypodium distachyon. Initiative, International Brachypodium Initiative,  (2010). Nature 463(7282): 763-768.​​


  • Ph.D., Bioinformatics and Plant Genomics, University Blaise Pascal, Clermont-Ferrand, France, 2012
  • M.Sc., Bioinformatics, University of Montpellier II, France
  • B.Sc., Biological Sciences, Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland
  • Technological University Degree, Agronomy, University Claude Bernard, Lyon1, France​

Professional Profile

  • ​2017 - now: Postdoctoral fellow, KAUST, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia
  • 2013 - 2017: Postdoctoral fellow, Institute of Experimental Botany, Olomouc, Czech Republic
  • 2008 - 2009:  Engineer, INRA GDEC, Clermont-Ferrand, France​

Research Interests Keywords

Bioinformatics Plant genomics Evolution comparative genomics