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University of Balamand > Spotlights > Associate Professor Hassan Dhaini


Associate Professor Hassan Dhaini

On Medical Laboratory Sciences

Associate Professor Hassan Dhaini joined the Faculty of Health Sciences in 2004. Since then he has taught courses related to toxicology and health risk assessment, to become in due course Chairperson of the Medical Laboratory Sciences Program (MLS). In this capacity, he has focused on supporting the educational needs of the Program by implementing standard operating procedures, reviewing curricula, recruiting new faculty, expanding physical facilities, and boosting research. His contributions to toxicology and academia are thus clearly significant.

In the past years, the MLS Program continued upgrading its laboratories, adopting standard safety guidelines, and disposing properly hazardous wastes. In addition, the program launched a tissue culture facility unit about 3 years ago to expand basic science research. Currently, the Program intends to inaugurate a new research laboratory by the end of this month. “This move will be taken as part of the Program strategic plan to boost research,” Dr Dhaini has explained. The new research lab will have four components including work stations for MS students, a biosafety-Level II unit to study bacteria and viruses, and newly acquired equipment and dedicated spaced for advanced protein analysis, genotyping and gene expression studies and epi-genetic tools.

Dr Dhaini obtained his BS in Environmental Health from the American University of Beirut and received an MS and a PhD in Toxicology from the University of Michigan Ann Arbor in the United States. Prior to joining the University of Balamand, he worked at the Walther Cancer Institute in Indiana, and at the King Faisal Hospital in Riyadh. His research revolves around cancer biomarkers, particularly studying the contribution of Drug-Metabolizing Enzymes to cancer risk and cancer clinical outcome. Since joining the University of Balamand, he published several scientific articles on the identification of environmental and genetic risk factors for urinary bladder cancer in Lebanese; particularly that Lebanon shows one of the highest incidences in the world for this particular malignancy. He is also involved in studying the exposure of the general population to endocrine disruptors and metals.

As Chairperson of the Medical Laboratory Sciences Program, Dr Dhaini argues that the mission of the Program is improve the health of the community by educating resourceful, multidisciplinary, competent, and ethical individuals in the field of medical laboratory sciences.. He explains that the MLS curriculum combines basic science with clinical training, and provides students with the opportunity to acquire research skills. “Our Ashrafieh Campus students,” he says, “complete their training in Saint George’s Hospital while our Main Campus students complete their training in 3 affiliated hospitals in North Lebanon.” Under MLS, students may acquire a BS in Medical Laboratory Sciences, with a premedical option, as well as an MS in Clinical Laboratory Sciences, or a Masters in Laboratory Management. “By obtaining a degree in Medical Laboratory Sciences, students can take up hospital or private laboratory positions, advance to graduate or medical studies, or choose to go into public health or health management,” he advises. With justified pride, he informs us that “there are currently 194 students enrolled in the Program, which is becoming increasingly competitive”.

Dr Dhaini believes that a professor should focus on critical thinking inside the classroom, and on research and investigation outside, and not simply on a mere transmission of knowledge, considering that all sorts of information are currently only one click away. He is confident that the MLS Program, taught in English, is responding to this philosophy and also to the mission of the University. Dr Dhaini appreciates the commitment of the University towards developing the MLS Program and expanding its Laboratories, and particularly values the support of President Salem, and Vice-President Karam. ​​​​
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University of Balamand,
Balamand Al Kurah,
Lebanon

Tel:  +961-6-930250
Fax: +961-6-930278