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Syahidah Akmal Muhammad

Dr Syahidah Dr. Syahidah Akmal Muhammad
Email : syahidah.muhammad@usm.my
Ext : 5987
Expertise :
Stable isotopes fingerprinting
Chemical fingerprinting in environmental forensics
Environmental monitoring of organic contaminant


I have over 10 years’ experience of collaborative research in environmental chemistry research areas. During the past 7 years I have started to focus more on environmental forensics niche area applying various chemical fingerprinting analyses namely trace element and mass spectral profiling as well as stable isotope analysis to source-apportion environmental contaminants in the environment. In 2012, I was appointed as a senior lecturer to teach environmental chemistry courses at the School of Industrial Technology, Universiti Sains Malaysia. In March 2014, while keeping my teaching position at the school, I joined the Doping Control Centre, now officially known as Analytical Biochemistry Research Centre (ABrC) to head their Stable Isotope Laboratory and Unit Perkhidmatan NMR (UPNMR), overseeing daily operations as well as providing analytical services to various researchers in Malaysia. Since 2016, I became involved in a collaborative research with Malaysian Nuclear Agency and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and up until now, still working together with them to strengthen national technical capability in food traceability through application of nuclear and related technologies. So far, I have authored and co-authored more than 20 citation-indexed journals and was awarded numerous national, international and industry grants. I have also received an international fellowship, visiting scientist/expert positions, and most recently been appointed as an environmental forensic expert by a key industry player and stakeholder.



1. IEA514/3, Applied Environmental Forensics                          

2. IEG301/3, Environmental Forensics            

3. IEK219/3, Treatment And Management Of Scheduled Waste

4. IUK107/4, Chemistry For Technologist                     

5. IEK309/3, Chemodynamics                   

6. IEK215/3, Environmental, Safety And Health Legislation   

7. IEK101/3, Chemical Process Calculations         




1. Stable isotopes fingerprinting

2. Chemical fingerprinting in environmental forensics as well as other forensic applications

3. Environmental monitoring of organic contaminants


1. Implementation of Nuclear Techniques for Authentication of Foods with High-Value Labelling Claims (INTACT Food). A Joint Research Collaboration with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) under the Coordinated Research Project, CRP D52042, EUR 35,000.00, 2019-2024.

2. Field-deployable Analytical Methods to Assess the Authenticity, Safety and Quality of Food. A Joint Research Collaboration with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) under the Coordinated Research Project, CRP D52040, EUR30,000.00, 2017-2022.

3. Source Authentication Analyses of Gelatin-Based Pharmaceutical Capsules: Towards Halal Labelling Claim Verification, USM (RUI), RM64,000.00, 01/01/2020-31/12/2022.

4. Understanding the dietary habit of stingless bees: Towards better quality honey and sustainable apiculture practices, FUNDAMENTAL RESEARCH GRANT SCHEME (FRGS), RM110,240.00, 15/08/2017-14/08/2019.

5. Is Organic Produce Really Organic? An Analytical Procedure to Verify Organic Labeling and Certification, USM (Bridging grant Khas), RM25,000.00, 15/08/2018-14/08/2019.

6. A study on the mechanisms of soil water uptake and nutrients cycling dynamics of oil palm trees: Significance in geographical origin determination. FUNDAMENTAL RESEARCH GRANT SCHEME (FRGS), RM100,000.00, 01/07/2014-31/12/2016.

7. Strengthening National Technical Capability in Food Traceability of Edible Birds Nest through Application of Nuclear and Related Technologies (IAEA TC MAL5030). A National Technical Cooperation Project with the Malaysian Nuclear Agency, Malaysian Ministry of Health, Depatment of Chemistry, Malaysia, Department of Veterinary Services, Malaysia and USM, fully funded by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), 2016-2017.

8. IAEA RAS 5062: 'Building Technological Capability for Food Traceability and Food Safety Control Systems Through the Use of Nuclear Analytical Techniques. A Regional Cooperative Project the Malaysian Nuclear Agency, fully funded by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), 20130-2015. 






1. Yong Chin Hong, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Fatimatuzzahra’ Abd Aziz, Jing-Sheng Ng, Fatin Ilyani Nasir, Eng-Keng Seow, Adenan, M.N.H., Moosa, S., Othman, Z., Abdullah, S.N.A., Sharif, Z. and Ismail, F., Simon D. Kelly, Andrew Cannavan. Detection of adulteration activities in edible bird’s nest using untargeted 1H-NMR metabolomics with chemometrics. Food Control, pre-print.

2. Yong Chin Hong, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Fatimatuzzahra’ Abd Aziz, Eng-Keng Seow; Fatin Ilyani Nasir, Mohd Zulklifi Mustafa, Baharudin Ibrahim, Simon D. Kelly, Andrew Cannavan. Detecting adulteration of stingless bee honey using untargeted 1H-NMR metabolomics with chemometrics. Food Chemistry, 368, 130808.

3. Umi Salamah Ramli, Noor Idayu Tahir, Nurul Liyana Rozali, Abrizah Othman, Nor Hayati Muhammad, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Azmil Haizam Ahmad Tarmizi, Norfadilah Hashim, Ravigadevi Sambanthamurthi, Rajinder Singh, Mohamad Arif Abd Manaf and Ghulam Kadir Ahmad Parveez. (2020) Sustainable palm oil – The role of screening and advanced analytical techniques for geographical traceability and authenticity verification. Molecules, 25, 2927.

4. Adenan, M.N.H., Moosa, S., Muhammad, S.A., Abrahim, A., Jandric, Z., Islam, M., Rodionova, O., Pomerantsev, A., Perston, B., Cannavan, A, Kelly, S.D., Othman, Z., Abdullah, S.N.A., Sharif, Z. and Ismail, F. (2020) Screening Malaysian Edible Bird’s Nests for adulterants using mid-Infrared - Attenuated Total Reflectance (IR-ATR) spectroscopy combined with chemometric analysis by Data-Driven Soft Independent Modelling of Class Analogy (DD-SIMCA). Forensic Chemistry, 17, 100197.

5. Widad Fadhullah, Nur Syahirah Yaccob, M. I. Syakir, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Fu-Jun Yue, Si-Liang Li (2020) Nitrate sources and processes in the surface water of a tropical reservoir by stable isotopes and mixing model. Science of the Total Environment, 700:134517.

6. Nur Anis Ahmad, Ali Salehabadi, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Mardiana Idayu Ahmad (2019) Potential risk and occupational exposure of pesticides among rice farmers of a village located in Northern Peninsular of Malaysia. Exposure and Health, 12, 735 – 749.

7. Ng Jing Sheng, Widad Fadhullah, AKM Omar, Ainolsyakira Mohd Rodhi, Noor Hana Hanif Abu Bakar, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad (2019). The authentication and evaluation of the quality of crude palm oil using FT-IR and FT-NIR combined with chemometric analysis. Malaysian Journal of Analytical Sciences, 23 (5), 870 – 879.

8. Strashnov, Ilya; Gilmour, Jamie; Cannavan, Andrew; Chen, Gang; Dissanayake, Champa; Fernando, Biyagamage Ruchika; Kelly, Simon; Muhammad, Syahidah Akmal; Singh, Dileep; Smith, Gareth; Taous, Fouad; Webb, Carole; Williamson, David; Xu, Zhenzhen; Xu, Zhenzhen (2019) Atmospheric Pressure Chemical Ionisation (APCI) and Photoionisation (APPI) mass spectrometry for detection of unsaturated fatty acids. Analytical Methods, 11, 3819 – 3828.

9. Strashnov, Ilya; Izosimov, Igor; Gilmour, Jamie; Denecke, Melissa; Almirall, Jose; Cannavan, Andrew; Chen, Gang; Dissanayake, Champa; Doroshenko, Iryna; Elghali, Tibari; Enston, Emma; Fernando, Biyagamage Ruchika; Kasozi, Gabriel; Kelly, Simon; Maqsood, Mohammed; Muhammad, Syahidah Akmal; Muryn, Christopher; Pomerantsev, Alexey; Singh, Dileep; Smith, Gareth; Taous, Fouad; Webb, Carole; Williamson, David; Xu, Zhenzhen; Yang, Shuming; Zitek, Andreas (2019) A Laser Ablation Resonance Ionisation Mass Spectrometer (LA-RIMS) for detection of isotope ratios of uranium at ultra-trace concentrations from solid particles and solutions. Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, 34, 1630 – 1638.

10. Muhammad, Syahidah Akmal, E.K. Seow, AK Mohd Omar, Ainolsyakira Mohd Rodhi, Hasnuri Mat Hassan, Japareng Lalung, Sze-Chi Lee, Baharuddin Ibrahim (2018). Variations of δ2H, δ18O and δ13C in crude palm oil from different regions in Malaysia: Potential of stable isotope signatures as a key traceability parameter. Science and Justice, 58 (1): 59 – 66.

11. Sze-Chi Lee, Muhammad, S. A., Ibrahim, M. H., Mohamed Nor, N. M. I. (2018) Antifungal properties of Mimusops elengi seeds against paddy seed-borne fungi and selected pathogenic fungi. Malaysian Journal of Microbiology, 14 (2): 152 – 158.

12. Katheem Kiyasudeen, Mahamad Hakimi Bin Ibrahim, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Sultan Ahmed Ismail, Fadzil Noor Bin Gonawan, Mark Harris Zuknik (2018) Earthworms as plug flow reactors: A first-order kinetic study on the gut of the vermicomposting earthworm Eudrilus eugeniae, Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 25: 31062 – 31070.

13. Nur Syahirah Yaacob, Muhammad Izzuddin Syakir Bin Ishak, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Zarul Hazrin Bin Hashim, Azimah Binti Abd Rahman, Fu-Jun Yue, Si-Liang Li, Widad Binti Fadhullah (2018) Application of Nitrate Stable Isotopes, δ15N-NO3- and δ18O-NO3- in Bukit Merah Reservoir, Malaysia, Journal of Physical Science, 29(Supp. 3): 1 – 6.

14. Muhammad, Syahidah Akmal, AK Mohd Omar, Ainolsyakira Mohd Rodhi, Hasnuri Mat Hassan (2017). Variations of δ13C and δ15N in oil palm tree organs: An insight into C and N distribution. Journal of Oil Palm Research, 29 (2): 242 – 250.

15. Nur Zafirah Zulkifli, Ilham J, Roslanzairi Mostapa, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Shaiful Yusuff, Muhammad Izzuddin Syakir Ishak (2017). Isotopic (δ13C and δ15N) variations in tropical river sediments of Kelantan, Malaysia: A reconnaissance study of land use impact to the watershed. Applied Ecology and Environmental Research, 15(4):1101 – 1119.

16. Farah Mastura Rosli, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Widad Fadhullah (2017). Comparison of stable isotope signatures between tropical freshwater and estuarine food web model. Asian Journal of Microbiology Biotechnology Environmental Sciences, 19(4): 836 – 842.

17. E.K. Seow, Baharuddin Ibrahim, Muhammad, Syahidah Akmal, L.H.Lee, Japareng Lalung and L. H. Cheng (2016). Discrimination between cave and house-farmed edible bird's nests (EBN) based on major minerals profile. Pertanika J. Trop. Agric. Sci. 39 (2): 181 – 195.

18. E.K. Seow, Baharuddin Ibrahim, Muhammad, Syahidah Akmal, L.H. Lee and L. H. Cheng (2016). Differentiation between house and cave edible bird's nests by chemometric analysis of amino acid composition data. LWT Food Science & Technology. 65: 428 – 435. 

19. Muhammad, S. A., Hayman, A. R., Van Hale, R., and Frew, R. D. (2015). Assessing carbon and hydrogen isotopic fractionation of diesel fuel n-alkanes during progressive evaporation. J. Forensic Sci. 60(Suppl. 1), S56 – S65.

20. Muhammad, S. A., Hayman, A. R., and Frew, R. D. (2015). Compound-specific isotope analysis of diesel fuels in a forensic investigation. Front. Chem. 3:12. doi: 10.3389/ fchem.2015.00012.

21. Mardiana Idayu Ahmad, Nur Anis Ahmad, Syahidah Akmal Muhammad, Norizan Esa (2014). A Survey on Use, Hazards and Potential Risks of Rice Farming Pesticides in Permatang Keriang, Pulau Pinang (Malaysia), International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, Volume 4, Issue 10, 1-11.

22. Muhammad, S. A., Frew, R. D. and Hayman, A. R. (2013). Forensic differentiation of diesel fuels using hydrocarbon isotope fingerprints. Centr. Euro. Geol. 56, 19–37.





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