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Brilliant Saudi Female Scientists to Know

Dr. Abeer Al Olayan

With Saudi Arabia boosting higher education for women across the Kingdom, Saudi women make up around 60 percent of university students. According to Arab News, Saudi female scientists have outnumbered the number of men graduating with a bachelor’s in IT, mathematics, statistics, biology and physics. Get to know these bright STEM minds shattering stereotypes and empowering younger Arab women...

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Dr. Elaf Ahmed - Lab Scientist

Dr. Elaf Ahmed conducts research projects for water treatment technologies and finds new ways to treat the water found in oil and gas reservoirs within the Oil and Gas Treatment Division at Aramco’s Research and Development Center.

Prior to getting her position, Ahmed specialized in nano-organisms whilst she undertook her postdoctoral work at King Abdullah University for Science and Technology. Read more about her here

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Dr. Malak Abed Althagafi - Physician-Scientist

Dr. Malak is one of the few American board-certified molecular neuropathologists in the world and has conducted research that focuses on decoding genetic mutations in tumors, specifically in children.

In 2014, she became part of the Saudi Human Genome Program and her clinical and research interests are mainly in surgical oncology, pathology, molecular genetics pathology and neuropathology, and their application when treating brain cancers.

It was suffering from a rare genetic disease as a child that drove her to begin her studies in genetic diseases in children, before she went on to study molecular pathology, surgical oncology, molecular genetics and neuropathology.

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Dr. Hind Al-Johani - Scientist of Physical Chemistry

Dr. Hind Al Johani is a remarkable scientist who discovered that by using the “simple molecule of citrate ions (from citric acid) you could stabilize and control the structure of gold nanoparticles.” From this revelation, her findings showed that gold can carry drugs through the body with no chemical side effects, and attaching antibodies can guide the nanoparticles to specific cells that need treatment.

Dr. Hind’s findings have also impacted environmental chemistry.

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Dr. Abeer Al-Olayan - Petroleum Scientist

Dr. Abeer is a research scientist at Saudi Aramco’s EXPEC Advanced Research Center and leads its chemicals development initiative and has an academic and industrial background in various fields of chemistry spanning over 2 decades.

She had submitted a fellowship research abstract that focused on reducing dependency on food-based chemicals to tackle drilling and subsurface challenges. She now has 10 registered patents with the US Patent Office for the development of methods, materials and compositions in drilling and fluid transfer.

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