Dr. Hossein Akhani

Associate Professor at the Department of Botany
School of Biology, University College of Science, University of Tehran
Ph.D. from Munich University 1998

E-mail: akhani@khayam.ut.ac.ir


Research activities:

Flora and geobotany of Iran and other SW Asian countries
Ecology and biogeography of halophytes
Ecological distribution and phylogeny of C4 plants
Conservation and biodiversity
Biosystematics of Chenopodiaceae, Apiaceae and the genus Heliotropium (Boraginaceae)
Flora and Vegetation of Golestan National Park (NE Iran)
Molecular phylogeny
Microscopy (light, SEM, TEM) and pollen morphology
Bryophyte flora of Iran


University Education, Employment careers and awards:

1988-1991: B.Sc. studies in Plant Biology at the Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran
1988-1992: M.Sc. studies in Plant Biology at the University of Tehran
1987-1993: Founder and curator of herbarium of the Natural History Museum of Iran
1993-1998: Ph. D. studies in Botany at the University of Munich by a DAAD award
1999-2003 Assistant Professor, University of Tehran
2002: Research visit in Germany (Darmstadt and Freiburg Universities with a fellowship from Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (3 months)

2004- Associate Professor, University of Tehran
2005: Sabbatical leave at Washington State University, USA (8 months)

2005- Director of Laboratory of Electron Microscopy, College of Science, University of Tehran


Courses taught:

B.Sc. courses
Plant Biology
Principles and Methods in Plant Systematics
Plant Systematics I, II, III
Laboratory of Plant Systematics I, II, III
Plant Ecology

M. Sc. courses
Plant Geography
Vegetation Ecology
Flora of Iran

PhD. course
Halophytes of Iran


Plant collections:


Since 1985, I have collected a total number of ca. 18000 specimens from most parts of Iran and some countries in SW Asia and Europe (Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Germany and Italy). The collection year, number of specimens and the places of preserving of main collections are given in the following table


Year of collection

Number of collection

Collection sites

Herbarium of original specimens




Arak, Tehran, Hormozgan, Khuzestan

Shahid Beheshti University

TARI, Hb. Akh.+



Mostly Chenopodiaceae from NW, C, and S of Iran in joint excursions with the staff of Research Institute of Forests and Rangelands





Ex. Numbers


Many parts of Iran, UAE

MMTT (Natural History Museum of Iran)

ASH, M, Hb. Akh.



Ex. Numbers


Many parts of Iran, (2800 specimens from Golestan National Park), Turkmenistan, Germany, Italy, Turkey, Pakistan, USA)

Hb. Akh.+

B, C, M, LI, W

* Approximate numbers due to unavailability of original lists.
+ Hb. Akh.: The private herbarium “Hb. Akhani” is currently housed in the Biological Department of Faculty of Science, University of Tehran.


List of publications:


Akhani, H. Biodiversity of halophytic and Sabkha ecosystems of Iran In: Khan, M. A., Barth, H., Kust, G. C. & Böer, B (eds.). Sabkha Ecosystems volume III: The South and Central Asian Countries. Springer. [40]


Akhani, H. Diversity, biogeography and photosynthetic pathways of Argusia and Heliotropium (Boraginaceae) in SW Asia with an analysis of phytogeographic units. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. [39]



Voznesenskaya, E., Koteyeva, N., Choung, S., Edwards, G., Akhani, H., Franceschi, V. 2005. Differentiation of cellular and biochemical features of the single cell C4 syndrome during leaf development in Bienertia cycloptera (Chenopodiaceae). American Journal of Botany 92: 1784-1795. [38].

Akhani, H., Barroca, J., Koteeva, N., Voznesenskaya, E., Franceschi, V., Edwards, G., Ghaffari, S.M., Ziegler, H. 2005. Bienertia sinuspersici (Chenopodiaceae): A new species from Southwest Asia and discovery of a third terrestrial C4 plant without Kranz anatomy. Systematic Botany, 30: 290.301. [37 pdf]

Akhani, H. 2005. The Illustrated Flora of Golestan National Park, Iran. Vol. 1. Tehran University Press. 481 pages, in English with 89 pages general data in Farsi, 798 colour pictures, 444 distribution maps. [36]. Download Erratum. Order the book by https://www.koeltz.com or ask the author.



Akhani, H. 2004. Halophytic vegetation of Iran: Towards a syntaxonomical classification. Ann. Bot. (Rome), 4: 66-82. [35]

Ghobadnejhad, M., Joharchi, M.R. & Akhani, H. 2004. Notes on the flora of Iran 5: Halimocnemis longifolia (Chenopodiaceae), a new record from Iran. Linz. Biol. Beitr. 36: 1309-1316. [34]

Akhani, H. & Kürschner, H. 2004. An annotated and updated checklist of the Iraninan Bryoflora. Cryptogamie, Bryologie 25: 315-347. [33H pdf]
 [33L pdf]

Akhani, H. 2004. A new spiny cushion-like Euphorbia (Euphorbiaceae) from SW Iran with special reference to the phytogeographic importance of local endemic species. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 146: 107-121. [32 pdf]

Akhani, H. 2003. Salicornia persica Akhani (Chenopodiaceae), a remarkable new species from Central Iran. Linzer Biol. Beitr. 35: 607-612. [31 pdf]

Akhani, H. 2003. [Status and problems in conservation of genetic resources in Iran]. Payam (Monthly Bulletin of Iranian Genetic Society). 6: 6-8.[In Persian]. [30]

Akhani, H. & Ghorbani, A. B. 2003.
Mandragora turcomanica (Solanaceae), a new distribution record for an endangered species. Syst. Biodiv. 1: 177-180. [29 pdf]

Akhani, H. 2003. Notes on the flora of Iran 4: Two new records and a synopsis of new data on Iranian Cruciferae since Flora Iranica. Candollea 58: 369-385. [28 pdf]

Yassa, N, Akhani, H., Aghaahmadi, M. & Salimian, M. 2003. Essential oils from two endemic species of Apiaceae from Iran. Z. Naturforschung 58c: 459-463. [27 pdf]

Akhani, H., Ghobadnejhad, M. & Hashemi, S. M. 2003. Ecology, biogeography and pollen morphology of Bienertia cycloptera Bunge (Chenopodiaceae), an enigmatic C4 plant without Kranz anatomy. Plant Biology 5: 167-178. (Highlighted). [26 pdf]

Akhani, H. & Salimian, M. 2003. An extant disjunct stand of Pterocarya fraxinifolia (Juglandaceae) in Central Zagros (Iran). Willdenowia 33: 113-120. [25 pdf]



Akhani, H. 2002. Notes on the flora of Iran 1: Asparagus (Asparagaceae) and Nitraria (Zygophyllaceae). Edinburgh J. Bot. 59 (2): 295-302. [24 pdf]

Akhani, H. & Ziegler, H. 2002. Photosynthetic pathways and habitats of grasses in Golestan National Park (NE Iran), with an emphasis on the C4 grass dominated rock communities. Phytocoenologia. 32 (3): 455-501. [23]. Ask for pdf.


Kürschner, H., Papp, B. & Akhani, H. 2000. New records to the bryophyte flora of Iran. Studies on the flora and vegetation of the Golestan National Park IV. Nova Hedwigia 71 (3-4): 509-518. [22]

Akhani, H. 2000. Plant diversity of Golestan National Park. In: Mohammadi Fazel; A. (ed.): Paleontology and Biodiversity, pp. 217-242. UNDP & Department of Environment. Tehran. (Persian summary of Akhani 1998 in Stapfia 53). [21]


1988-1998 (Student period)
Akhani, H. 1999. Studies on the flora and vegetation of the Golestan National Park, NE Iran III. Three new species, one new subspecies and fifteen new records for Iran. Edinburgh J. Bot. 56 (1): 1-31. [20]

Akhani, H. & Scholz, H. 1998. Studies on the flora and vegetation of the Golestan National Park, NE Iran II: A new Poa and some new and noteworthy grass records for Iran. Edinburgh J. Bot. 55 (3): 443-453. [19]

Akhani, H. 1998. Plant biodiversity of Golestan National Park, Iran. Stapfia (411 pages, 16 figures, 880 distribution maps, 171 colour pictures). [18]

Akhani, H., Trimborn, P. & Ziegler, H. 1997. Photosynthetic pathways in Chenopodiaceae from Africa, Asia and Europe with their ecological, phytogeographical and taxonomical importance. Plant Systematics & Evolution 206: 187-221. [17 pdf]

Akhani, H. & Podlech, D. 1997. Suaeda Scop. (Chenopodiaceae) In: Rechinger, K. H. (ed.)
Flora Iranica 172: 133-152 + tab. 86-100. Akademische Druck- u.  Verlagsanstalt Graz. [16]

Akhani, H. 1996.
Studies on the flora and vegetation of the Golestan National Park, NE Iran, I: A new species and some new plant records. Ann. Naturhist. Mus. Wien. 98B Suppl. 97 - 105. [15]

Akhani, H. 1996. A new species and a synonym in Chenopodiaceae from Iran. Sendtnera 3: 5 -11. [14]

Akhani, H. & Joharchi, M. R. 1995. New and interesting records for the flora of Iran. Willdenowia 25: 261 - 266. [13]

Akhani, H. 1994. [A survey to the botanical literatures of Iran (K. H. Rechinger, Flora Iranica, Lfg. 1-171]. Nashri-Danish 14 (3): 40-46. (In Persian). [12]

Ebrahimzadeh, H, Ataei-Azimi, A., Akhani, H. & Noori-Daloii, M. R. 1994. Comparison of seed proteins electrophoresis of eight species of the genus Suaeda (Chenopodiaceae) in Iran. J. Sci. I. R. Iran 5 (4): 141 - 148. [11]

Ebrahimzadeh, H, Ataei-Azimi, A., Akhani, H. & Noori-Daloii, M. R. 1994. Studies on the caryology of some species of the genus Suaeda (Chenopodiaceae) in Iran. J. Sci. I. R. Iran 5 (3): 81 - 88. [10]

Akhani, H. & Förther, H. 1994. The genus Heliotropium L. (Boraginaceae) in Flora Iranica Area. Sendtnera 2: 187 - 276. [9]

Akhani, H. & Ghorbanli, M. 1993. A contribution to the halophytic vegetation and flora of Iran. In: Lieth, H. & Al Masoom, A. (eds.). Towards the rational use of high salinity tolerant plants, vol 1: 35 - 44. Kluwer Academic Publishers. Dordrecht. [8 pdf]

Akhani, H. 1993. [Adaptation and distribution of perennial species of the genus Heliotropium in desertic areas of Iran]. In Proceedings of the First Seminar of the Problems of Iranian Deserts and Kavirs (May 17-20, 1992, Yazd), vol. 1: 524 - 545. Iranian Desert Research Center, University of Tehran (In Persian). [7]

Akhani, H. & Riedl, H. 1991. Heliotropium esfandiarii (Boraginaceae), a new species from north-central Iran. Linzer biol. Beitr. 23/2: 615 - 620. [6]

Akhani, H. 1991. Heliotropium disciforme (Boraginaceae) a new species from northeast of Iran. Linzer biol. Beitr. 23/2: 569 - 573. [5]

Akhani, H. 1990. An introduction to the desert vegetation of Iran. Mohit-e Zist (The Environment) 3 (2): 4 - 12 & 72 - 73. (In Persian, English summary). [4]

Akhani, H. 1989. (publ. 1992). A contribution to the vegetation and flora of Kavire-Meyghan (NE, Arak), Iran. J. of Sci. Univ. Tehran 18 (1 - 4): 75 - 84. (In Persian, English summary). [3]

Botschantzev, V. P., Akhani, H. 1989. A new section and a new species of the genus Salsola (Chenopodiaceae) from the southern Iran. Bot. Zhurn., 74 (11): 1664 - 1666. (In Russian). [2]

Akhani, H. 1988. Plant records from Kavire-Meyghan (Arak), new to Iran. Iranian. J. Bot. 4 (1): 105 - 107. [1]


Taxonomic novelties (new species, subspecies and new combinations)

Bienertia sinuspersici Akhani
Centaurea golestanica Akhani & Wagenitz
Cynoglosum kandavanense (Bornm. & Gauba) Akhani
Eriocycla ghafooriana Akhani [=Seseli ghafooriana (Akhani) Pimen.]
Euphorbia acanthodes Akhani
Heliotropium aucheri Boiss. subsp. carmanicum (Bunge) Akhani
Heliotropium dasycarpum Ledeb. subsp. transoxanum (Bunge) Akhani & Förther
Heliotropium disciforme Akhani
Heliotropium esfandiarii Akhani & Riedl
Leutea laseroides Akhani (=Laser rechingeri Akhani)
Leutea glaucopruinosa (Rech.f.) Akhani & Salimian
Plantago podlechii Akhani
Poa golestanensis H. Scholz & Akhani
Salicornia persica Akhani
Salsola zehzadii Akhani
Seseli tortuosum L. subsp. kiabii Akhani
Suaeda baluchestanica Akhani & Podlech
Zeravschania pastinacifolia (Boiss. & Hausskn.) Salimian & Akhani


M. Sc. thesis supervised

Ajani, Yousef. 2004. Taxonomic revision of genera Cymbocarpum, Diplotaenia, Johrenia, Dorema, Haussknechtia, Azilia, Opopanax and Smyrniopsis (Apiaceae) in Iran.
Aqaahamadi, Majid . 2003. Chemotaxonomy of Peucedanum complex (Apiaceae) in Iran, with special reference to the genus Leutea. (Co-supervisor, Dr. N. Yassa)
Ghobadnejhad, Massoumeh. 2003. Systematic study of genera Halanthium, Halimocnemis, Halocharis (Chenopodiaceae) and related genera in Iran.
Ghorbani, Abdol-Baset. 2004: Ethnobotanical studies in Golestan Province and adjacent regions.
Salimian, Mojtaba. 2002. Taxonomic revision of Peucedanum complex (Apiaceae) in Iran
Nowruzi, Jalil, 2005. Phytosociological study of Alpine zone of Tuchal Mountains, N. Tehran.

Zarrinpour, Vajiheh. 2002. The vegetation of Tehran (Arade mountains, Pardisan Nature Park, Kuy-e Nasr, Evin and Tuchal), with respect to human impact andartificial plantation on plant diversity.

Society membership

International Association for Vegetation Sciences (IAVS)
International Association for Plant Taxonomy (IAPT)
Iranian Genetic Society (IGS)



University of Tehran,
School of Biology
College of Sciences
University of Tehran
P.O. Box: 14155-6455, Tehran, Iran.
E-mail: akhani@khayam.ut.ac.ir



Home | Administration | Faculty & Staff | Programs | Research

Seminars & News | Contact Us

© Copyright by Department of Biology. 1997-2005

Design by www.ToranjNet.com