About me //
I was born in Jerusalem and grew up in Petach Tikva. While studying for my PhD at the Hebrew University I worked as a dentist. During this time I married Daniela, a former resident of Uruguay who had made Aliya to Israel. We have three children: Liam, Micaela and Noga. Now back in Israel, we live in Jerusalem, very close to the Ein Kerem (Medical) campus.
My personal ambition to work in an academic setting and passion for science evolved in Israel. Science has always fascinated me, but it wasn’t until I actually engaged in research at high-school following the advice and support of my high-school biology teacher that I became aware of the tremendous value of research. Following her advice, I carried out a research project in one of the leading biotech companies in Israel, Bio-Technology General (Israel) Ltd, for almost two years. Then, as a student for Dentistry at the Hebrew University, I re-explored my passion for basic science and enrolled in an MSc program, which evolved into a direct-track to a PhD. In fact, a great motivation and persistence continuously helped me to advance my career in the past, along with having a family.
My research projects over the past years have varied, crossing disciplines and methodologies, finally focusing on the different pathophysiological aspects of the endocannabinoid (eCB) system. With a desire to directly improve people’s everyday life, I have strived to integrate my clinical curiosity and experimental knowledge to deepen the understanding of clinically relevant research questions.
My scientific research began in the area of bone biology. I pursued my graduate training at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem under the mentorship of the late Prof. Itai Bab from the Faculty of Dental Medicine and Prof. Esther Shohami from the School of Pharmacy, where I studied the mechanisms by which the central eCB system modulates peripheral skeletal remodeling. In particular, I was interested in the clinical phenomenon whereby traumatic brain injury (TBI) induces a systemic stimulation of bone formation, leading to excessive accumulation of bone tissue in normal and ectopic sites.
To broaden my scientific knowledge and skills, I joined Dr. Kunos’s group at the Division of the Intramural Research at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) of the NIH as a Postdoctoral Fellow. During my postdoctoral studies in the USA, I explored the biological mechanisms underlying obesity and the metabolic syndrome. More specifically, I worked on targeting the peripheral eCB system for the treatment of obesity and its hormonal/metabolic complications.
I joined the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 2014, as a senior lecturer (equivalent to an Assistant Professor) at the Faculty of Medicine’s School of Pharmacy and a member of the Institute for Drug Research. My career goal is to establish an internationally recognized independent research program in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. My research goal is to uncover the involvement of the eCB system in the pathogenesis of obesity and its metabolic consequences, with therapeutic prospects for the development of an effective drug therapy.