Ali obtained a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Münster, Germany after completing a MSc in biophysics and a bachelor of science in cell biology. During his PhD as a member of the Graduate School of Chemistry, he worked in the Institute of Physical Chemistry on the stability of a-Amylase from Bacillus licheniformis under different conditions. After completing his PhD he worked as a postdoc in the Institute of Medical Biochemistry at the University of Münster. His postdoctoral projects involved working on protein-protein and protein-lipid interactions in the annexin and S100 family of proteins. Ali specialises in different methods for studying ligand-protein interactions.