Areas of expertise
I obtained a PhD degree in Azerbaijan. I have joined the Molecular Plant Biology group at the University of Turku as a postdoctoral research fellow in 2002. In 2009, I was awarded with a Docent title in the field of Bioenergetics. I have been acting as Principal Investigator at the Molecular Plant unit, University of Turku since 2010. Currently I am a Professor of Basic and Applied Photosynthesis. Moreover, I am chairing the Nordic Center of Excellence “Towards Versatility of Aquatic Production Platforms: Unlocking the Value of Nordic Bioresources” (NordAqua, www.nordaqua.fi) funded by NordForsk (2017-2022) and the Biocity Turku Research Programme “Advanced Bioresources and Smart Bioproducts – Towards Sustainable Bioeconomy” (SmartBio, www.smartbio.fi).
I have been involved in teaching 'Advanced photosynthesis' and 'Bioenergetics' courses since 2009. Currently I am responsible for the 'Applied Photosynthesis' and 'Bio-based Finland' courses. Moreover, I am involved in the University of Turku Doctoral Programme (UTUGS) as a PhD supervisor.
My research interests have been mainly focused on plant, algal and cyanobacterial photosynthesis and the alternative electron-transport routes, which are heavily involved in regulation of photosynthesis. Currently our team is investigating (i) the alternative electron transport pathways in cyanobacteria and green algae; (ii) the distribution mechanisms of photosynthetic electrons to hydrogenases (or to nitrogenase in heterocytous cyanobacteria); (iii) development of artificial microfilms of algae and cyanobacteria entrapped in tailored polymeric matrices for increasing the light conversion efficiency toward product; (iv) biodiversity of Nordic cyanobacteria and algae for efficient waste-water remediation, for production of biofuels and high-value products.
Projects as Principal Investigator:
- 2021-2023 Research project grant from the Novo Nordisk Foundation, ”Advanced photosynthetic biocatalysts" (PhotoCat), consortium, total funding 4 M DKK;
- 2020-2023 EU FET-Open “Leaf-inspired nanocellulose frameworks for next generation photosynthetic cell-factories” (FuturoLEAF), consortium, total funding 3M €;
- 2020-2022 Research project grant from the Novo Nordisk Foundation, “Photosynthetic cell factories for production of phenylpropanoids” (PhotoPro), consortium, total funding 3.8M DKK;
- 2020-2024 OPERA Global Cooperation Program of Japan (University of Tsukuba, AIST Japan and University of Turku);
- 2019-2023 Academy Project Funding “CO2 capturing leaf inspired biocatalyst from photosynthetic cells and lignocellulosic building blocks” (AlgaLEAF), consortium, total funding 987 834 €;
- 2018-2022 Academy Project Funding “Revisiting the photosynthetic electron transport chain opportunities for improved efficiency toward valuable sink”, 466 989 €;
*** Our group is always looking for motivated post-docs and PhD students. If you are interested in any of the research areas we pursue you can contact YAR (allahve[a]utu.fi) along with your CV.
**** M.Sc and B.Sc students who are intrested to do their thesis projects can contact YAR (allahve[a]utu.fi) directly.