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Dr. Md. Kawsar Khan

Dr. Md. Kawsar Khan

Rolff Group - Evolutionary Biology

Institute of Biology

Freie Universität Berlin


Königin-Luise-Straße 1-3
14195 Berlin
kawsarkhan [at] zedat.fu-berlin [dot] de

2022 - present

Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellow, Freie Universität, Germany

2019 - 2022

Postdoctoral Fellow, Macquarie University, Australia

2016 - 2019

Doctor of Philosophy in Evolutionary Biology, Macquarie University, Australia

2011 - 2012

Master of Science in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh

2007 - 2011

Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology,University of Dhaka, Bangladesh

Climate change is one of the major causes of biodiversity loss and it is predicted that up to one sixth of all species might face extinction within the next 100 years. Insects are particularly vulnerable to climate change because of their short life span, ectothermic nature and complicated life cycle which often involves dependencies on diverse habitats and other organisms. One-way in which climate change can cause or contribute to extinction is by facilitating the spread of diseases and by modifying host-pathogen interactions in a way that is detrimental to hosts. Our understanding of the impact of climatic factor on insects’ immune systems is limited. Closing this gap will enhance the predictability of climate change-driven shifts in host-pathogen interactions and species extinction risks. My current research goals are to understand how climate change would impact insect-pathogen interactions. I study variation of spatial and temporal variation of parasitism to determine how local climatic factor impacts host-pathogen interactions.

  • Khan, M. K., & McLean, D. J. (2023). Durga: An R package for effect size estimation and visualisation. bioRxiv, 2023-02.
  • Palash, A., Paul, S., Resha, S. K., & Khan, M. K. (2022). Body size and diet breadth drive local extinction risk in butterflies. Heliyon, e10290.
  • Herberstein, M.E.*, McLean, D.J., Lowe, L., Wolff, J., Khan, M.K., Smith, K., Allen, D., Bulbert, M., Buzatto, B., Falster, D., Fernandez, L., Griffith, S., Madin, J. S., Narendra, A., Westoby, M., Whiting, M., Wright, I. and Carthy, A. (2022) An animal trait database for body mass, metabolic rate and brain size. Scientific Data, 9, 265, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41597-022-01364-9.
  • Khan, M.K* and Herberstein, M. E. (2022). Parasite infection is associated with reduced mating in a pond damselfly. Ethology. https://doi.org/10.1111/eth.13315 
  • Paul, S*, Khan, M.K.#, and Herberstein, M#. Sexual and developmental variation of ecto-parasitism in damselflies.  PLoS ONE 17(7): e0261540. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0261540
    #MKK and MEH are joint senior author
  • Khan, M.K.* and Herberstein. M.E. (2021) Male-male interactions drive the evolution of conspicuous male colouration in a non-territorial mating system. Animal behvaiour, 176, 157-166. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2021.04.006
  • Khan, M.K.*, Hämäläinen, M. (2021) The rare and beautiful damselfly Rhinocypha trimaculata rediscovered in Bangladesh: With notes on earlier records, redescription of male and distinguishing characters from R. ignipennis (Odonata: Chlorocyphidae). Notulae odonatologica 9(6), 308-323.
  • Hannan, M.A., Rahman, M.A., Sohag, M.A.M., Uddin, M.J., Dash, R., Sikder, M.H., Rahman, M.S., Timalsina, B., Munni, Y.A., Sarker, P.P., Alam, M., Mohibbullah, M., Haque, M.N., Jahan, I., Hossain, M.T., Afrin, T., Rahman, M.M., Tahjib-Ul-Arif, M., Mitra, S., Oktaviani, D.F., Khan, M.K., Choi, H.J., Moon, S.I.* and Kim B*. (2021) Black Cumin (Nigella sativa L.): A Comprehensive Review on Phytochemistry, Health Benefits, Molecular Pharmacology, and Safety. 13, 1784. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13061784
  • Khan, M.K.* (2021) Gyncantha chaplini sp. nov., a new dragonfly (Odonata: Aeshnidae) species from Bangladesh. Odonatologica, 50, 95-105. doi-10.5281/zenodo.4746248
  • Khan, M.K.* and Herberstein, M.E. (2020) Ontogenetic habitat shifts reduce costly male-male interactions. Evolutionary Ecology, 34, 735-743. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10682-020-10064-y
  • Khan, M.K.* (2020) Female pre-reproductive colouration reduces mating harassment in damselflies. Evolution, 74(10),2293-2303. https://doi.org/10.1111/evo.14048
  • Khan, M.K.* (2020) Bagworm decorations are an anti-predatory structure. Ecological Entomology, 45 (5), 924-928. https://doi.org/10.1111/een.12876.
  • Khan, M.K.* & Herberstein, M.E. (2020) Ontogenetic colour change signals sexual maturity in a non- territorial damselfly. Ethology, 126, 51–58. https://doi.org/10.1111/eth.12959 .
  • Shah, M.N.A. & Khan, M.K.* (2020) OdoBD: An online database for the dragonflies and damselflies of Bangladesh. PloS ONE, 15(4): e0231727. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0231727.
  • Haque, M.T., Shah, M.N.A., Paul, S., Khan, M.K. & Barua, P.* (2020) Zika viral proteome analysis reveals an epitope cluster within NS3 helicase as a potential vaccine candidate: an in silico study. Informatics in medicine unlocked, 21, 100434. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.imu.2020.100434
  • Sohag, A.A.M.*, Hannan, M. A.*, Rahman, S., Hossain, M., Hasan, M., Khan, M. K., Khatun, A., Dash, R., Uddin, M. J. (2020) Revisiting potential druggable targets against SARS-CoV-2 and repurposing therapeutics under preclinical study and Clinical Trials: A Comprehensive Review. Drug Development Research.81, 919-941. https://doi.org/10.1002/ddr.21709.
  • Kalkman, V.J.*, Babu, R., Bedjanič, M., Conniff, K., Gyeltshen, T., Khan, M.K., Subramanian, K.A., Zia, A. and Orr, A. (2020) Checklist of the dragonflies and damselflies of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Zootaxa, 4849 (1), 1-84.
  • Sohag, A.A.M., Tahjib-Ul-Arif, M.*, Afrin, S., Khan, M.K., Hannan, M.A.*, Skalicky, M., Mortuza, M.G., Brestic, M., Hossain, M. A., and Murata, Y. (2020) Insights into nitric oxide-mediated water balance, antioxidant defence and mineral homeostasis in rice (Oryza sativa L.) under chilling stress. Nitric Oxide, 100–101, 7–16. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.niox.2020.04.001.
  • Khan, M.K.* & Herberstein, M.E. (2019) Sexually dimorphic blue bands are intra-sexual aposematic signals in non-territorial damselflies. Animal Behaviour, 156, 21–29. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2019.07.011.
  • Tuhin, M.S.H. & Khan, M.K.* (2018) An updated list of Odonata of southwestern Bangladesh. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 10, 12995–13001. https://doi.org/10.11609/jott.4031.10.15.12995-13001
  • Islam, S.M.T., Zaman, S., Khan, M.K., Uddin, M.I., Chakraborty, S., Nishat, N.S., Ibnat, N., Alam, M. M., Bhuiyan, T. R., Qadri, F., and Seraj, Z* (2018) Multi-epitope cluster Ep85B within the mycobacterial protein Ag85B elicits cell-mediated and humoral responses in mice. Turkish Journal of Immunology, 6, 108–117. https://doi.org/10.25002/tji.2018.868.
  • Khan, M.K.* (2018) Odonata of eastern Bangladesh with three new records for the country. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 10, 12821–12827. https://doi.org/10.11609/jott.3819.10.13.12821-12827
  • Zaman, S., Islam, S.M.T., Khan, M.K., Alam, M.M., Uddin, M.I., Baby, N.I., Islam, S., Bhuiyan, T.R., Qadri, F., and Seraj, Z.* (2018) Immunogenicity of recombinant bacterial antigens expressed as fusion proteins in transgenic rice seeds. BioTechnologia, 98, 269–281. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5114/bta.2017.72288
  • Khan, M.K.* (2015) Dragonflies and damselflies (Insecta: Odonata) of the northeastern region of Bangladesh with five new additions to the Odonata fauna of Bangladesh. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 7, 7795–7804. https://doi.org/10.11609/JoTT.o4314.7795-804.
  • Khan, M.K.* (2015) Gynacantha subinterrupta Rambur, 1842: an addition to the odonates (Insecta: Odonata: Aeshnidae) of Bangladesh. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 7, 7704–7705. https://doi.org/10.11609/JoTT.o4276.7704-5.
  • Shah, N.A., Barua, P. & Khan, M.K.* (2015) Immunoinformatics Aided Prediction of Cytotoxic T Cell Epitope of Respiratory Syncytial Virus. Bioresearch Communications, 1, 7.
  • Khan, M.K., Zaman, S., Chakraborty, S., Chakravorty, R., Alam, M.M., Bhuiyan, T.R., Rahman, M.J., Fernandez, C., Qadri, F., and Seraj, Z*. (2014) In silico predicted mycobacterial epitope elicits in vitro T-cell responses. Molecular Immunology, 61, 16–22. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.molimm.2014.04.009.