Photo of Laila Ziko

Biotechnology & medicine

Laila Ziko

Mined microbes living in harsh conditions in deep Red Sea areas and found promising antibacterial and anticancer effects

Laila Ziko is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Biology Department at the American University in Cairo. Laila has been teaching introductory biology, genetics, and cell and molecular labs to undergraduate students since February 2019. During her PhD, Laila worked with Professor Rania Siam’s research team to explore the harsh environments of the Red Sea and to mine their microbial metagenomes for antibacterial and anticancer effects. They reported their work in 2019 in two publications and they are currently working on expanding their research. She completed her PhD in Applied Sciences at the American University in Cairo in January 2019 and was awarded the EMBO short-term fellowship in 2017. In 2018, she won with her PhD thesis project the Falling Walls Lab in Cairo and represented Egypt in the Berlin Finale. Earlier, she earned her MSc. degree in Biotechnology in 2013 from the American University in Cairo, where she worked on multiple stressors for more efficient cancer therapy. Laila’s main research interests are natural products with antibacterial and anticancer effects. In 2008, Laila received her BSc. in Pharmacy and Biotechnology from the German University in Cairo. 

Laila lives in Cairo and she enjoys spending her weekends with her family and young nephews.