Dr Ata-ur Rehman completed his PhD at the King's College University of London, UK in 1991. The work included purification of two type of laccases (1&11) and cloning of laccase-1 gene from the root rot fungus Armillaria mellea .
The postdoctoral research included, Agrobacterium mediated transformation of pasture legume Medicago truncatula.;construction of different gene cassettes and their, biolistic and electroporation mediated, delivery in cereals (wheat, barley & rice) and Isolation, cloning and transformation of the Glycerol phosphate dehydrogenase genes (GPD1 & 2) in the wine yeast, to produce low alcohol wines with improved sweetness and palate.Past research and supervisory activities includes development and implementation of DNA and protein markers for improvement of cereals crops such as barley, wheat, rice and canola; genetic identification of Australian olives cultivars and olive oils using molecular markers; supervision of number of Master and PhD students on research work to investigate and develop high value bioactive compounds as therapeutic agents against human ailments such diabetes, hypertension, cancer
Dr Ata-ur Rehman is leading an ACIAR funded research project to improve the productivity and profitability of lentil, chickpea and ground crops in the existing cropping systems in Pakistan.The farmer-led project focuses on identifying agronomic factors limiting the productivity and profitability of lentils, chickpeas and groundnut, and evaluation of possible solutions; Increasing opportunities for farmers to undertake postharvest value addition to chickpea, lentil and groundnut crops, by adapting and demonstrating food processing technologies suitable for small holders to add value to crops where appropriate; and developing site-specific village-based seed production and seed dissemination systems to increase farmer access to improved varieties.