Naama Geva-Zatorsky, Ph.D. – Principal Investigator
Naama is combining systems-biology with microbiology and immunology to study the interactions between gut microbes and the host immune system in health and disease. She has characterized the host response to a variety of gut microbes and has applied a metabolic labeling approach to fluorescently label the anaerobic gut microbes. In addition, she is studying microbial genetic mechanisms that allow gut microbes to thrive the dynamic gut ecosystem and to co-op with bacteriophage. She is a recipient of the Alon Fellowship, the national and international UNESCO-L’Oreal award, the Human Frontiers fellowship, the EMBO fellowship, the John F. Kennedy Prize, the Teva Prize, and the Barenholz prize, for academic excellence. Naama received her B.Sc. from Tel Aviv University, double-majoring in Chemistry and Biology, with summa cum laude honors. Her M.Sc. and Ph.D., are from the Weizmann Institute, studying systems-biology of protein dynamics in cancer, with Prof. Uri Alon, completed with honors. Her postdoctoral training was at Harvard Medical School, studying gut microbiota-host interactions with Prof. Dennis Kasper.
Tal Gefen, Ph.D. – Lab Manager
Tal obtained his B.Sc. in Biotechnology from Tel-Hai Academic College. He then pursued consecutive secondary degrees, M.Sc. and Ph.D., both in Immunology from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Faculty of Agriculture. He continued to a postdoctoral position at the University of Miami, faculty of medicine in Eli Gilboas’ lab where he focused on cancer immunotherapy using Aptamer technology. He chose to join Naama in her endeavors as he was fascinated by the opportunity to help establish a new lab and hopes to contribute to the research.
Neerupma Bhardwaj, Ph.D. – Post-Doctorate
Neeru received her Ph.D. from the Department of Molecular Biophysics at the Indian Institute of Science Bangalore, India. She studied the stress associated pathways in bacteria and designed the drug to combat these pathways. Neeru joined Naama’s lab to study microbe-microbe and microbe-host interactions, with the aim of decoding the crosstalk between the host and bacteria. Currently, she is studying the social interactions in a synthetic gut microbial community and is tracing the interaction of gut commensals in the host immune cells using metabolic and fluorescent labeling.
Tal Capucha, DMD-PhD – Researcher
Tal graduated from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem with a DMD-PhD degree. In his Ph.D. he studied the relationship between ontogeny and homeostasis of dendritic cells in the mucosa and the environment with an emphasis on the microbiome. He currently acts as a resident in the Maxillofacial Surgery Department at Rambam Health Care Campus. Tal joined Naama’s lab as a physician-scientist to study the combined role of the microbiota, and tumor-associated immune cells in development and prognosis of Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.
Haytham Hajjo – MD-PhD Student
Haytham is from the small village Deir Hanna located in the Galilee. He received his B.Sc. in Medical Science from the Technion Faculty of Medicine, with summa cum laude honors. He is part of the MD-PhD program and is studying the mutual interaction between the brain & gut microbiomes, working in collaboration with Asya Roll’s lab.
Nadav Ben-Assa, MD-PhD Student
Nadav graduated from Tel-Aviv University with a B.Sc. in Chemistry and Biology. He then enrolled in the Medical school at the Technion. Currently, Nadav is working as an MD-PhD student in Naama’s lab. When Nadav learned that Bacteriophages interact directly with the human body, he found it impolite not to interact back with them. Nadav is trying to find how the presence of certain bacteriophages affect and interact with the human immune system. Nadav believes that all bacteriophages, bacteria, and eukaryotes were created equal and hopes to find a peaceful solution to the eons-old conflict between them.
Rawi Naddaf, MD-PhD Student
Rawi, from Nazareth, is part of the M.D-Ph.D. program at the Rappaport Faculty of Medicine in the Technion. He joined Naama’s Lab for the Ph.D. portion of his studies, where he will be conducting research to study the broad interactions between the microbiome and the host’s tumors in cancer development and tumorigenesis.
Dana Kadosh, MSc Student
Dana graduated with her B.Sc. in Biotechnology and Food Engineering at the Technion. In 2017, she participated in the International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) competition, focusing on interactions between allergies, autoimmune diseases and the immune system using synthetic biology. Dana was passionate about the marvelous human immune system, and joined the Geva-Zatorsky lab to study the immunomodulatory microbial molecules produced by the human gut microbiota and how they interact with the immune system. When she can’t sleep, she tries counting bacterial colonies.
Noa Mandelbaum, MSc Student
Noa received her B.Sc. in Biochemical engineering from the Technion. She worked for a year as a Research and Development Assistant at Melcap, a medical device company, and is currently volunteering in “Engineers Without Borders” at the Technion. Noa joined Naama’s lab to characterize bacterial-derived immunomodulatory molecules in order to understand their mechanistic interactions that have therapeutic potential.
Shaqed Carasso, MSc Student
Shaqed graduated from the Technion with a B.Sc. in Biology. His undergraduate research with Dr. Ayelet Lamm focused on validating targeted gene downregulation through the RNAi mechanism in C.elegans nematodes. Shaqed joined the Geva-Zatorsky lab to pursue an M.Sc. degree where he is researching therapies against antibiotic-resistant bacteria and phages-gut bacteria interactions.
Naama Eshal, Undergraduate Research Assistant
Naama is from Nahlal and has always been interested in biology research and sciences. When she met Naama Geva-Satorsky and discussed her passion for biomedical studies, she was offered a research assistant position to join the lab, to help and learn about the research. She has been having the time of her life ever since.
Natali Constantinescu, Undergraduate Research Assistant
Natali is a third-year medical student, at the Rappaport Faculty of Medicine in the Technion. She is currently working at Naama’s lab as a research assistant after she introduced herself to Naama and expressed her interest in microbiome studies. She assists Naama’s students when they conduct big experiments and learns from them.
Yossi Ben-Dor, Undergraduate Research Assistant
Yossi is a third-year medical student in the Technion- Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, and he found his way to Naama’s lab due to his interest in the microbiome. Currently, he is working as a research assistant in the lab to explore his interests and gain experience in the microbiome field.
Michal Brunswasser-Meirom, Post-Doctorate
Margalit Lillie Beck, MSc Student
Svetlana Fridman, Post-Doctorate
Elliot Berinstein, MD Student
Marian Khoury, Visiting Biotechnology Student