AGYA Member

Zeina Hobaika


Areas of Expertise:
Bioenergy, Rational Drug Design, Macromolecules Structure & Interactions, Agro-industrial Byproducts Valorization

About me

I am currently Associate Professor and Head of Life and Earth-Biochemistry Department at the Faculty of Sciences at Saint Joseph University of Beirut. My main research interests cover rational drug design for crucial therapeutic proteins targets. We aim specifically, in a molecular modeling approach, to contribute to fighting diseases such as AIDS, Cancer or Alzheimer's. Another major project I am working on consists in the management and the valorization of agro-industrial byproducts and waste. Our activities include bioactive compounds extraction and characterization, waste to energy process optimization and public strategies implementation.

I hope to take part in the construction of healthy global societies, within sustainable development approaches. Therefore, I believe our actions and policies should take account of economic, social and environmental aspects in dealing with long-term issues and have to involve various stakeholders at the public and private sector interface. Accordingly, being a member of AGYA will allow me to fulfill these objectives, in the best way possible. In fact, I consider AGYA an expanded network of excellence where we can learn from others, learn about and grow towards each other.

Current projects

  • Member of the AGYA Working Groups Energy, Water and Environment & Health and Society
  • Waste Management and Valorization: production of biogas and compost in collaboration with UBS, France and Lebanese Agriculture Research Institute, arcenciel NGO, Château KSARA and Château KEFRAYA, Lebanon
  • Valorization of agro-industrial byproducts: characterization of phenolic compounds in Lebanese fruits, in collaboration with University of Technology of Compiègne (UTC), France and American University of Beirut(AUB), Lebanon
  • Study of inhibitors complexes with therapeutic properties: applications to metalloproteins involved in pathologies, in collaboration with UPMC Sorbonne Université, France and NIH Bethesda, Maryland, USA
  • MentorShe Project to empower Lebanese Women in Politics, funded by the Alumni Engagement Fund Innovation Fund (AEIF), USA
  • TechWomen Program Ambassador and L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women In Sciences Ambassador in Lebanon, to empower young girls and women in STEM fields
  • Towards Excellence III Forum, to promote Excellence culture among Lebanese enterprises

Academic Career

August 2019 - Head of Life and Earth-Biochemistry Department at the Faculty of Sciences at Saint Joseph University of Beirut.
2015 -Head of Macromolecules Structure and Interactions Research Team, Faculty of Sciences, Saint Joseph University of Beirut; Lebanon
2014 - 2015Executive Diploma in Management and Conduct of Strategic Projects, Sciences Po; Paris, France
2012 -Head of Master’s in BioMarketing, Faculty of Sciences, Saint Joseph University of Beirut; Lebanon
2012 -Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Medicine, Saint Joseph University of Beirut; Lebanon
2010 -Assistant Professor, Life and Earth Sciences - Biochemistry Department, Faculty of Sciences, Saint Joseph University of Beirut; Lebanon
2009PhD in Structure, Function and Proteins Engineering, Université Paris 7; France
2005MA in Sciences, Health and Applications, Université Paris 7; France (Exchange Program with Saint Joseph University of Beirut)
2005MA in Structure and Interactions of Macromolecules and Functional Genomics, Saint Joseph University; Beirut, Lebanon


Selected Publications

  • El Achkar J.L., Lendormi T., Salameh D., Louka N., Maroun R.G., Lanoisellé J.L. & Hobaika Z. (submitted). Influence of several pretreatment conditions on lignocellulosic fractions and methane production from grape pomace, Bioresource Technology. (Ref: BITE-D-17-05073).
  • EL Khoury L., Piquemal, J.P., Fermandjian S., Maroun R.G., Gresh N. & Hobaika Z. (2017). The inhibition process of HIV-1 integrase by diketoacids molecules: understanding the better efficiency of Dolutegravir, Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications. 1; 488(3), 433-438. Doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2017.05.00.
  • El Hage K., Piquemal J.P., Hobaika Z., Maroun R.G. & Gresh N. (2014). Substituent-Modulated Affinities of Halobenzene Derivatives to the HIV-1 Integrase Recognition Site. Analyses of the Interaction Energies by Parallel Quantum Chemical and Polarizable Molecular Mechanics, The Journal of Physical Chemistry A. 2014 Oct 16; 118(41), 9772-82. Doi: 10.1021/jp5079899.

see a full list of publications>


Saint Joseph University of Beirut, Faculty of Sciences

Biochemistry Department P.O. Box 11-514 Riad El Solh Beirut 1107 2050 Lebanon

+961 142 1380

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