Wurtzel 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, 23 Zuckerman labs have been established in Israel.

Interested in applying for the faculty scholars program?

Eligibility
Dr.
Principal Investigator
Dr. Omri Wurtzel

Zuckerman Faculty Scholar
at Tel Aviv University

Dr.

Wurtzel Lab

REGENERATION AND STEM CELL BIOLOGY
Lab Established 2018

Lab research areas

The laboratory studies the building blocks of regeneration — stem cells and the signals that they respond to — using comparative genomics, imaging, and functional gene studies.

Scholar Profile

Dr. Wurtzel began his studies as a medical student at Tel Aviv University, but felt drawn to doing science, not just absorbing it. His wife suggested that he sit in on a microbiology seminar, which eventually led to his career as a scientist. In the MD-PhD program at the Weizmann Institute of Science, he discovered a novel RNA-regulatory mechanism, the Excludon, which simultaneously activates and represses divergent genetic programs.

Following his doctorate, he decided to pursue his long-time scientific interest in tissue regeneration. In his postdoc at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, he studied how simple organisms, planarian flatworms, can recover from virtually any injury by using tissue regeneration. Through the study of highly regenerative organisms, Dr. Wurtzel’s research aspires to unravel principles of stem cell biology and tissue healing in higher organisms, such as humans, where only certain organs and cell types can regenerate.

Dr. Wurtzel believes that his life experiences have taught him that a diversity of viewpoints is essential for creativity, and that a clear sense of purpose fosters enthusiasm that is key to success. He strives to bring these attitudes to his lab at Tel Aviv University.

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