Alexander von Humboldt fellowship awarded to Yoav Elkis

Max Planck Researcher Yoav Elkis

Studying the function of a key ‘molecular switch’ in cellular signaling

Yoav Elkis, a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Research Group of Constantinos Demetriades at the Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing, has been awarded a highly-competitive, 2-year Humboldt-Bayer Research Fellowship. In the context of the Humboldt-Bayer-funded project, he will be investigating the molecular and cellular mechanisms via which nutrients, growth factors and various stresses regulate how cells function.

“I have a long-standing interest in cancer cell metabolism and signaling. This fellowship gives me the opportunity to look into a very important topic in cell biology. I am very happy to be awarded such a prestigious fellowship”, says Yoav Elkis. His work will focus on the so-called Tuberous Sclerosis Complex (TSC), a protein complex which functions as a ‘molecular switch’ in cells. Importantly, the TSC mediates the beneficial effects that nutrient restriction has on ageing, and mutations on the respective genes can lead to the development of tumors and to neurological disorders in humans. Dr Elkis will investigate how information from multiple signals from the cellular environment converges on this complex to regulate cellular physiology.

“I am really proud of Yoav. Obtaining this fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt foundation is a great success for the lab and himself”, says Max Planck Research Group Leader Demetriades. “Because of the importance of the TSC in ageing and disease, the outcomes of Yoav’s research are expected to shed light on fundamental cellular processes, and have the potential to identify novel targets for drug development in the future”. 

About Yoav Elkis

Dr. Elkis obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s degree at the Bar-Ilan University in Ramat-Gan, Israel. He performed his PhD in the Lab of Professor Uri Nir at the same University.  After graduating, Yoav worked for several years at the Israeli biotech industry.  In March 2018, Yoav joined the Demetriades Group at the Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing as a Postdoctoral researcher.

About the fellowship

Through the Humboldt Research Fellowships for postdoctoral researchers, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation enables highly-qualified, early-career scientists and scholars from abroad to realize research projects for up to 24 months in cooperation with academic hosts in Germany. Candidates are selected based on the evaluation of their academic qualifications and the quality and innovative nature of the proposed research. The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation is cooperating with the Bayer Science & Education Foundation to increase the number of fellowships it can award and to create additional contacts and opportunities for those it sponsors.

Learn more about the research in the Demetriades lab.

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