Eviatar Yemini receives 2022 Klingenstein-Simons Fellowship in Neuroscience

Eviatar Yemini, PHD

Eviatar Yemini, PhD, assistant professor of neurobiology, is one of 13 researchers nationwide to receive a 2022 Klingenstein-Simons Fellowship in Neuroscience.

Through a partnership with the Simons Foundation, the Esther A. and Joseph Klingenstein Fund supports early career researchers engaged in basic or clinical research that can lead to a better understanding of neurological and psychiatric disorders. Three-year prizes are $225,000.

“I have always admired the exciting research of the Klingenstein-Simons fellows and am delighted to join the group and learn from their insights. This award will fund my lab’s work on developmental changes in neural dynamics that drive new behaviors,” said Dr. Yemini.

Yemini joined UMass Chan Medical School in January after postgraduate training with Oliver Hobert, PhD, in the Department of Biological Sciences at Columbia University. There, Yemini used genetics, molecular and cellular biology, and whole-brain imaging to understand nervous system development and communication.

His lab uses the worm C.elegans understand how a nervous system develops to meet the behavioral needs of specific life stages. One of the tools the lab uses is “NeuroPALa method developed by Yemini for in vivo cell type labeling using color barcodes. NeuroPAL animal models represent the first organisms that can be studied simultaneously for the activity of the entire nervous system and the cell type identity of each individual neuron.

Yemini credited Vivian Budnik, PhD, the Worcester Foundation Chair for Biomedical Research Iand President and Professor of Neurobiology, and his colleagues for their mentorship and support.

“We have an exceptional and unparalleled support network for young neuroscience faculty at UMass Chan,” he said.

The Esther A. and Joseph Klingenstein Fund established the Klingenstein Fellowship Awards in 1981 to better understand epilepsy and improve the lives of those who suffer from it. The scope of the awards has since expanded to include cellular and molecular neuroscience, neural systems, and translational research. The fund entered into a partnership with the Simons Foundation in 2013.

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