Prof. Orna Amster-Choder

Researcher , Microbiology & Molecular Genetics, IMRIC

Share this
Why I became a researcher: 

As a molecular biologist, I want to find out how cells work. As an IMRIC researcher, I am examining how cells receive signals and respond to them and how outside stimuli trigger gene expression in the cell. Through our research at IMRIC we've shown that two groups of molecules — sensors that receive the signal and the regulators that give the ‘go-ahead’ to gene expression — cluster together at the cell membrane. When they receive the signal from outside the cell, they break apart, priming the cell to do its job effectively. Now that we know how it works, we've started to develop new tools to stop the transmission of bacterial infections and, hopefully, prevent their spread.


1976: B.Sc., Chemistry. Summa Cum Laude, the Hebrew University, Israel

1984: Ph.D., Life Sciences. Dept. of Biochemistry, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel

1987: Postdoctoral Fellow. Dept. of Genetics, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel

1992: Postdoctoral Fellow. Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Tufts University Medical School, Boston, MA

Selected Awards and Honors: 
1992-1995: Alon Fellowship for excellent young investigators, awarded by the Israeli Ministry of Science
1994: Hirsh Award for excellent young investigators, awarded by the Israeli Society for Microbiology.
1994: Excellent Teacher in Biology (course: Anatomy and Physiology of Microorganisms for undergraduate students).
1994: Excellent Teacher in Microbiology (lab course: Genetic Engineering for graduate students)
1998: The Hebrew University - Faculty of Medicine Excellent Scientist Award.
2002: The Hebrew University-Faculty of Medicine Excellent Lecturer Award.
2005-present: Incumbent of the Dr. Jacob Grunbaum Professional Chair in Medical Sciences
amster [at] cc [dot] huji [dot] ac [dot] il