Professional Education

  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Cambridge (2017)
  • Master of Science, Weizmann Institute Of Science (2010)
  • Bachelor of Science, Tel-Aviv University (2007)


All Publications

  • Single-cell expression analyses during cellular reprogramming reveal an early stochastic and a late hierarchic phase. Cell Buganim, Y., Faddah, D. A., Cheng, A. W., Itskovich, E., Markoulaki, S., Ganz, K., Klemm, S. L., van Oudenaarden, A., Jaenisch, R. 2012; 150 (6): 1209?22


    During cellular reprogramming, only a small fraction of cells become induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). Previous analyses of gene expression during reprogramming were based on populations of cells, impeding single-cell level identification of reprogramming events. We utilized two gene expression technologies to profile 48 genes in single cells at various stages during the reprogramming process. Analysis of early stages revealed considerable variation in gene expression between cells in contrast to late stages. Expression of Esrrb, Utf1, Lin28, and Dppa2 is a better predictor for cells to progress into iPSCs than expression of the previously suggested reprogramming markers Fbxo15, Fgf4, and Oct4. Stochastic gene expression early in reprogramming is followed by a late hierarchical phase with Sox2 being the upstream factor in a gene expression hierarchy. Finally, downstream factors derived from the late phase, which do not include Oct4, Sox2, Klf4, c-Myc, and Nanog, can activate the pluripotency circuitry.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.cell.2012.08.023

    View details for PubMedID 22980981

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3457656

  • Direct reprogramming of fibroblasts into embryonic Sertoli-like cells by defined factors. Cell stem cell Buganim, Y., Itskovich, E., Hu, Y. C., Cheng, A. W., Ganz, K., Sarkar, S., Fu, D., Welstead, G. G., Page, D. C., Jaenisch, R. 2012; 11 (3): 373?86


    Sertoli cells are considered the "supporting cells" of the testis that play an essential role in sex determination during embryogenesis and in spermatogenesis during adulthood. Their essential roles in male fertility along with their immunosuppressive and neurotrophic properties make them an attractive cell type for therapeutic applications. Here we demonstrate the generation of induced embryonic Sertoli-like cells (ieSCs) by ectopic expression of five transcription factors. We characterize the role of specific transcription factor combinations in the transition from fibroblasts to ieSCs and identify key steps in the process. Initially, transduced fibroblasts underwent a mesenchymal to epithelial transition and then acquired the ability to aggregate, formed tubular-like structures, and expressed embryonic Sertoli-specific markers. These Sertoli-like cells facilitated neuronal differentiation and self-renewal of neural progenitor cells (NPCs), supported the survival of germ cells in culture, and cooperated with endogenous embryonic Sertoli and primordial germ cells in the generation of testicular cords in the fetal gonad.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.stem.2012.07.019

    View details for PubMedID 22958931

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3438668

  • Neuroprotection and progenitor cell renewal in the injured adult murine retina requires healing monocyte-derived macrophages. The Journal of experimental medicine London, A., Itskovich, E., Benhar, I., Kalchenko, V., Mack, M., Jung, S., Schwartz, M. 2011; 208 (1): 23?39


    The death of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) is a hallmark of many retinal neuropathies. Neuroprotection, axonal regeneration, and cell renewal are vital for the integrity of the visual system after insult but are scarce in the adult mammalian retina. We hypothesized that monocyte-derived macrophages, known to promote healing in peripheral tissues, are required after an insult to the visual system, where their role has been largely overlooked. We found that after glutamate eye intoxication, monocyte-derived macrophages infiltrated the damaged retina of mice. Inhibition of this infiltration resulted in reduced survival of RGCs and diminished numbers of proliferating retinal progenitor cells (RPCs) in the ciliary body. Enhancement of the circulating monocyte pool led to increased RGC survival and RPC renewal. The infiltrating monocyte-derived macrophages skewed the milieu of the injured retina toward an antiinflammatory and neuroprotective one and down-regulated accumulation of other immune cells, thereby resolving local inflammation. The beneficial effect on RGC survival depended on expression of interleukin 10 and major histocompatibility complex class II molecules by monocyte-derived macrophages. Thus, we attribute to infiltrating monocyte-derived macrophages a novel role in neuroprotection and progenitor cell renewal in the injured retina, with far-reaching potential implications to retinal neuropathies and other neurodegenerative disorders.

    View details for DOI 10.1084/jem.20101202

    View details for PubMedID 21220455

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3023128

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