Prof. Tamir Ben-Hur
My main research interests are in regenerative medicine to neurological disorders and neuroimmunology.
My lab was the first to describe the immune-modulatory and neuroprotective properties of neural stem cells, and their beneficial effects in animal models of multiple sclerosis. We also were first to show that transplanted neural stem cells induce the facilitation of myelin repair by the brain's own resident precursor cells.
We studied the bilateral interactions between the brain and neural stem cells, in various aspects that are important to both the understanding of basic biological issues and of clinical translation. For example:
The attraction of neural stem cell migration by inflammatory processes and the specific role of microglia anf of chemokines in this process.
The effect of local brain environment of the survival and function of transplanted stem cells.
Currently, my PhD and MSc students in the lab are working on several projects, such as:
Transplantation of human embryonic stem cell – derived oligodendrocyte progenitor cells in a clinical-relevant model of chronic multiple sclerosis to test their regenerative and functional therapeutic effects. The cells are also transplanted to a model of genetic dysmyelination.
Studying the functional properties of resident neural precursor cells of the adult brain.
Studying the cellular and molecular basis for neurotrophic and immune-regulatory effects of neural stem cells and the loss of these functions in ageing and neurodegenerative diseases.
Inducing immunomodulation and repair (neurogenesis and oligodendrogenesis) in chronic CNS-compartmentalized neuroinflammatory conditions.
Currently Professor and Chairman, Dept. of Neurology
Director, Division of Clinical Neurosciences, Hadassah Hebrew University Medical Center
Honors and Awards:
Bird’s prize of the Hebrew University (1983), Fellow of the Foulkes Foundation, London (1984-87), Gorsak prize for distinguished intern, Hadassah University Medical Center (1990), American Physician Fellowship for Medicine in Israel prize (1994), Long term fellowship, International Human Frontiers in Science Program Organization (HFSPO) (1995-97), Hebrew University, Faculty of Medicine prize for research (1996), Teva – Hadassah Research prize and grant (2000)
Peer reviewed scientific journals: Science, Nature Medicine, Lancet Neurology, J. Clinical Investigation, Annals of Neurology, J. Neuroscience, Brain, Stem Cells, Neurology, Exp. Cell Research, Exp. Neurology, Eur. J. Neuroscience, J. Neurological Sciences, Clinical Immunology, Glia, J. Neuroimmunology, Int. J. Neuropsychopharmacology, & others
Reviews for Granting agencies: Scientific reviews for grant applications to the Israel Science Foundation, US-Israel Binational Science Foundation, Medical Research Council of the United Kingdom, National Institute for Psychobiology, Italian MS Society, French MS Society, Australian MS Society and others.
Multiple Sclerosis Journal
J. Neurological Sciences (until 2013)
Neuroscience Research International
Israel Neurological Society
The American Neurological Association
The American Academy of Neurology
The International Society of Neuroimmunology
The Society for Neuroscience (USA)
Research support (last 5 years):
The Israel Science Foundation
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society (USA)
Israel ALS Society
2011-2013; The Taubman Foundation: "Stem cell therapy for ALS". $200,000 / $600,000
2012-2016; The British Council - Birax: "Towards regenerative medicine in multiple sclerosis". $300,000 / $600,000
2013-2015; Cure Alzheimer's Fund Stem cell consortium. $200,000 / $1,000,000
Total direct support (2003-2013): $1,317,000
Students: MD thesis (4 completed), MSc degree (5 completed, 1 current student), PhD degree (7 completed, 2 current students), post-doc (2 completed, 1 current fellow)
Stem cell development and functions, cell therapy for neurological disorders, basic and clinical neuroimmunology