2017 projects

Crossing Borders between Genres and Languages in Ancient Mesopotamian Literature in the Old Babylonian Period

Scholars of the Mesopotamian literature of the Old Babylonian period (roughly 2000-1500 BCE) usually deal with one of three literatures written in cuneiform script that are distinguished linguistically: (1) Myths, epics, wisdom literature, hymns and prayers written in the main register of Sumerian (Emegir) and known mainly from the scribal schools; (2) Lament-prayers in the Emesal register of Sumerian; and (3) myths, epics, wisdom literature, hymns, prayers, and incantations, written in the Akkadian languages.

On the one side,

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Cybersecurity Breaches and Legal Liability Under Private Law

The purpose of this research project is to examine the interface of cybersecurity breaches and legal liability under private law, according to two perspectives:

  • the first perspective is to conduct a legal analysis on how current private law doctrines (both particular and general torts-based liability) respond to cybersecurity breaches. In addition to a critical-comparative examination of current law, the research will examine whether there is a need for a legal reform, in private law,

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Exploring emotional biases in vision using electrophysiology during free viewing conditions

Elucidating the neural mechanisms that subserve conscious awareness is a fundamental goal of neuroscience. There is abundant evidence that conscious perception is gated by the ability to direct attention to behaviorally relevant stimuli in the environment, through top-down modulation of sensory pathways by attention control networks. Attention can be directed by internal goals (endogenous) or salient external cues (exogenous). There is also evidence that attention can be guided by emotional significance of stimuli even when these are goal-irrelevant (1),

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Extending the multiscale simulation toolbox for a comprehensive understanding of photoreceptor proteins

The scope of this joint proposal is the application of multiscale modeling for the systematic study of photoreceptor proteins and their mutants. Photoreceptor proteins are the key molecules for response to and sensing of light in many organisms. They mediate a variety of functions in nature such as visual perception, regulation of circadian rhythm, phototaxis and light-oriented growth of plants. However, due to the large size of these proteins their computational studies are challenging. The unfavorable scaling of quantum chemical methods renders any explicit treatment of the environment unfeasible.

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Impact of the circadian clock on α- and β-pancreatic islet cell gene transcription and function upon β-cell failure and regeneration

Circadian oscillation of biological processes has been described in light-sensitive organisms from bacteria to human beings, reflecting the existence of underlying intrinsic clocks. Our recent work suggests that α- and β-cellular clocks are oscillating with distinct phases in vivo and in vitro. These cellular oscillators impact critically on the temporal profiles of insulin and glucagon secretion, and on the transcriptional patterns of key functional genes in the islet cells. Parallel analysis of the molecular properties of α- and β-cell oscillators was conducted by establishing a mouse model expressing three reporters: one diagnostic for α-cells,

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Globalisation, Migration, and Policy: Europe and Israel

This collaboration aims at setting up a joint research course for advanced MA and doctoral students of our two universities. The course addresses the process of globalisation through the prism of international immigration.

In a nation-based state characterised both politically and ideologically by immigration such as Israel, understanding migration and associated social, cultural, and economic struggles is of particular importance. By contrast, Western European countries have needed to adapt to a multiple waves of migration due to ageing populations,

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Living and Fossil stromatolites in the Dead Sea Basin

Stromatolites represent the oldest forms of life and are commonly defined as laminated organo-sedimentary structures built by the trapping, binding and/or precipitation of minerals via microbial processes. Dead-Sea stromatolites have attracted considerable attention and recently have been used to constrain the late Quaternary lake level curve. This closed-basin contains living and fossil stromatolites at a wide range of water salinity, temperature, oxidation state, and  lighting. The basin thus offers a unique opportunity to understand the environmental factors controlling their formation as well as to develop a better chronology for the last glaciation,

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