Prof. Isaiah (Shy) Arkin Appointed Head of the Authority for Research and Development at Hebrew U.

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Isaiah ArkinProf. Isaiah (Shy) Arkin Appointed Head of the Authority for Research and Development at Hebrew U.

September 15, 2009 - Prof. Isaiah (Shy) Arkin has been appointed head of the Authority for Research and Development at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, it was announced by Hebrew University president, Prof. Menahem Ben-Sasson, last week.

Prof. Arkin was born in 1965 in Tel Aviv. He conducted his bachelor's degree at the Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment at the Hebrew University and at the Faculty of Life Sciences at Tel Aviv University, and completed his doctorate in cell biology at Yale University. From 1997-2000, he was a lecturer in the department biochemistry at Cambridge University, after which he joined the faculty of the Hebrew University as a senior lecturer in biochemistry, where he was awarded the Alon Fellowship. In 2001, he was promoted to associate professor and in 2007, he became a professor. He was appointed chair of the Alexander Silberman Institute of Life Sciences in 2008.

Prof. Arkin's research deals with computational (bioinformatics) and experimental structural biology of membrane proteins, and use and development of novel experimental and computational approaches to elucidate membrane proteins structure.

Hebrew University president Prof. Menahem Ben-Sasson said, ''Prof. Arkin has succeeded in shedding new light on the cell penetration mechanisms of the flu virus and SARS and on the solution to the special folding of protein responsible for Huntington's disease. Prof. Arkin is a scientist whose integrative and multi-disciplinary approaches are dominant in his work, and who has a fruitful interaction with biology, chemistry, physics and medicine.''

According to Prof. Arkin, ''The research and development conducted at the Hebrew University is like that at other universities in Israel - a driving force for critical economic growth for the future and security of the State of Israel. Even during hard times as these when there is economic uncertainty, the Israeli government should follow the path of the U.S. government that significantly increased funds allocated to scientific research out of an understanding that it is crucial to the development of the U.S. economy.''

Prof. Arkin is involved in the establishment of the new biology-chemistry studies track. He was also responsible for the computerization of the Alexander Silberman Institute of Life Sciences, where he was on the steering committee for biotechnology. In addition, he was active in the planning of the new building for teaching laboratories at the Edmond J. Safra campus at Givat Ram.

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