Tal is tackling a potential treatment for Alzheimer's disease
- Age: 30
- Field: Neuroscience
- Lives in: Tel Aviv
- Married with one child
My Research: Astrocytes as waste-removal cells in Alzheimer’s Disease
Cleaning out Dementia: Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the massive build-up of a protein (called beta-amyloid) in the brain, which eventually causes neuronal death. My research examines specialized cells (astrocytes), which, in addition to other tasks in the brain, are responsible for the removal of waste such as protein deposits and dead cell remains. The primary goal of the project is to understand the waste-removal mechanism and to manipulate it in a manner that will result in disease attenuation. Among other things, we are experimenting with implanting healthy cells into a sick brain and measuring their effect on the disease’s progression.
“Scientific research requires patience, delayed gratification and dealing with failures. It is important to recognize this as an integral part of this line of work.”
Black Box: When I was 1.5 years old, my twin brothers were born and the three of us grew up almost like triplets. When I was four years old, we left my hometown of Haifa for a six-year stay in Spain. Those were formative years that taught me to adapt to new environments and cultures. In high school, I began to read popular science books about the brain, and since then, I have been fascinated by the unexplained connection between the brain’s biological function and complex experiences like cognition and emotions.
Delayed Gratification: My dream is to establish a neuroscience lab at one of the leading universities in Israel. In the short term, I would like to continue to develop as a scientist by doing a post-doc at a leading university abroad. Scientific research requires patience, delayed gratification and dealing with failures. It is important to recognize this as an integral part of this line of work.
Tal is a PhD student at the Sagol School of Neuroscience.