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Ben-Tabou Smadar, Dr.

Ben-Tabou Smadar, Dr.

Smadar Ben-Tabou de-Leon is head of the Biological Regulation and Evolution lab in the University of Haifa’s Leon H. Charney School of Marine Sciences.
She received a BSc in Physics and Computer Science and MSc and PhD in Physics from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. In 2004-2011 she was a post-doctoral researcher at the division of Biology at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). She was the recipient of the Rothschild Fellowship in 2004 and the Human Frontier Science Foundation fellowship for in 2005.

Her lab investigates the genetic code that controls embryo development and the evolution of this code. She contributed to the understanding of the gene regulatory networks that drive skeleton formation in the sea urchin embryo. She revealed the similarity between this network to the one that drives blood vessel formation in humans, demonstrating a co-option of an ancestral developmental program into a novel use.