Tel Aviv University’s Prof. Judith Berman was recently named one of 56 new members of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO), joining a group of more than 1800 of the finest researchers in Europe and around the world.

Prof. Judith BermanProf. Berman, of TAU’s George S. Wise Faculty of Life Sciences, is being recognized for her outstanding achievements in the study of the growth and evolution of yeast. Prof. Berman, a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the American Society for Microbiology, uses yeasts, especially pathogenic yeasts, to address basic mechanisms of genome change that underlie rapid phenotypic responses to stress.  


“We are so proud of Prof. Berman for being elected to EMBO, which chooses the most exceptional scientists to join their ranks,” says Prof. Karen Avraham, Vice Dean of TAU’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine, a member of the EMBO Council and Prof. Berman’s nominator for EMBO.

“Prof Berman is an appreciated member of the Faculty of Life Sciences at TAU,” says Prof. Abdussalam Azem, Dean of TAU’s Faculty of Life Sciences. “Electing Prof Judith Berman as an EMBO Member is a strong recognition of her research, which is at the forefront of molecular biology of pathogenic yeasts.” 


EMBO Members actively participate in the execution of the organization’s initiatives by sitting on committees and editorial boards, evaluating applications for EMBO funding, mentoring young scientists and providing suggestions and feedback on activities.


“EMBO Members conduct research at the forefront of all life science disciplines, ranging from computational models or analyses of single molecules and cellular mechanics to the study of higher-order systems in development, cognitive neuroscience and evolution,” adds EMBO Director Maria Leptin.


Improving the future of medicine

“It is a great honor to be recognized for my study of pathogenic yeasts of humans and their responses to antifungal drug stress,” says Prof. Berman. “These include mitotic defects that cause aneuploidy and cell-to-cell heterogeneity driven by non-genetic mechanisms.


“We investigate the interplay between chromosome instability, membrane and cell wall dynamics, and intracellular localization of antifungal drugs to better understand processes that modulate the amplitude and diversity of phenotypic responses.”


EMBO will formally welcome its new members and associate members at the Annual Members’ Meeting in Heidelberg between October 29-31.