The Harel Lab

The Zuckerman Faculty Scholars program, funds leading researchers and supports the purchase and construction of laboratories and specialized equipment. The program thus provides vital resources to Israeli universities, allowing them to compete with top North American institutions for the most promising candidates.

The program facilitates the return of top Israeli scholars to Israeli institutions, cultivates world class scientific talent, and in turn, attracts outstanding postdoctoral researchers from top Western universities, creating a cycle of excellence.

Since the program opened in 2016, 16 Zuckerman labs have been established in Israel.

Interested in applying for the faculty scholars program?

Eligibility
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Principal Investigator
Dr. Itamar Harel

Zuckerman Faculty Scholar
at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

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The Harel Lab

EXPERIMENTAL BIOLOGY OF VERTEBRATE AGING AND AGE-RELATED DISEASES
Lab Established 2019

Lab research areas

The laboratory tries to answer fundamental questions in biology, such as:

  • What is the molecular basis behind the outstanding diversity of lifespan between different animals (which can reach a 500-fold difference among vertebrates)?
  • What separates disease from healthy aging?

To explore these questions, the lab uses cutting-edge techniques to develop a variety of disease models, including single-cell technology, mass spectrometry, and genome editing.

Scholar Profile

Dr. Harel is a member of the Department of Genetics at Hebrew University, part of the Silberman Institute of Life Sciences. The Harel lab is a research group combining genetics, vertebrate physiology and cell biology to uncover and characterize the molecular mechanisms that regulate aging in vertebrates. Specifically, Dr. Harel would like to understand why aging is such a potent driver of disease and identify its tissue-specific mechanisms.

For his postdoctoral research at Stanford, Dr. Harel needed to examine aging in an animal with a shorter lifespan than mice and zebrafish, the classic vertebrate models. He turned to the shortest-lived vertebrate, the African turquoise killifish, whose lifespan is 6 times shorter than that of mice and 10 times shorter than zebrafish, and transformed it into a powerful genetic model. Since then, many leading labs around the world have used killifish for aging research. In the summer of 2018, Dr. Harel co-organized an international killifish conference. He looks forward to contributing to the advancement of the Israeli scientific community and to Israeli scientific education.

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