Group Members


Mor Nitzan​


Senior Lecturer (Assistant Professor)

Matt Ricci

Postdoctoral Fellow​

I am a Zuckerman Postdoctoral Fellow in the School Computer Science and Engineering at Hebrew University where I work with Mor Nitzan. My research lies at the intersection of machine learning and dynamical systems, and I am particularly interested in the dynamics of complex networks. Ongoing projects concern statistical models of pattern generation in biological tissue and the classification of higher order structure in dynamical systems. Earlier, I received my PhD from Brown University and an MA/BA in mathematics from the University of Pennsylvania. Personal website:

Noa Moriel

PhD Student

I am a first year PhD student in the Computer Science Department of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. I am intrigued by expression regulation within individual cells as well as the cooperative regulation within multicellular systems. In particular, I am interested how unicellular and multicellular regulation systems evolve, how cell-cell communication secures a controlled growth of the tissue, and how these mechanisms are disrupted in anomalies of the functional tissue.
Prior to this I completed both BSc. and MSc. supervised by Prof. Nir Friedman, worked as an algorithmic developer at Mobileye, and worked as a research scientist at the Broad Institute and at Harvard University. Aside from research I enjoy hiking, traveling and regrowing various plants.

Zoe Piran

PhD Student​

My research focuses on encoding and decoding cellular identities in single-cell data. Utilizing tools and methodologies from my interdisciplinary background involving research in statistical physics, machine learning, and information theory I am developing computational frameworks to  (i) disentangle and reconstruct the multiple facets of cellular identity from single-cell data by filtering known biological signals and applying semi-supervised disentanglement methods,  (ii) infer the underlying structure of different biological processes and (iii) model and predict information encoding mechanisms in cells.


Yotam Constantini

PhD Student​

A Jerusalemite nerd forever changed by Tel-Aviv, interested in the countless ways we human model the living world around us. Currently still looking for my lane in the field of computational biology, I start with asking questions about the definitions of cell populations in multicellular organisms. In my M.Sc I studied virology, while taking courses in computer science through the Adi Lautman Interdisciplinary program at the Tel-Aviv University. 


Jonathan Karin

PhD Student

I am an PhD student in Computer Science, I earned my BSc in Computer Engineering from Ben Gurion University and before joining the lab I was working as a Hardware Designer at Intel.

I am interested in modeling biological systems using mathematical tools, especially linear algebra and optimization. I am currently working on analyzing the spectrum of the signals composing scRNA-seq data. 

In my free time, I like cooking vegan food, traveling, and watching football games of Maccabi Haifa.


Sima Dubnov

PhD Student​, joint with Prof. Hermona Soreq (HUJI)

I am a student at the Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences (ELSC). My main research interest is exploring molecular processes underlying neurodegeneration in the human brain. I am using methods based on Information Theory, in particular the Information Bottleneck algorithm, to deepen the current understanding of cell type identity in the aging brain and to disentangle biological processes involved in disease progression. I enjoy combining coding with biological experiments. Therefore, my PhD also includes an experimental project, which aims to construct a unique transcriptomic dataset from live human brain samples. I spend most of my free time reading, dancing, and travelling.

Hagai Rappeport

PhD Student​, joint with Prof. Nathalie Balaban (HUJI)

I'm interested in understanding general organizing principles of Life. A strong adherent of Dobzhansky's "Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution", I believe that much of our current gaps in understanding Life stem from our gaps in understanding Evolution. To try and bridge one such gap, my current research agenda is focused on modelling the role of adaptive phenotypic plasticity in driving evolution and studying analogs of such plasticity in models from Complex Systems Theory. My MSc was on the topic of Chaos in Biological Systems, with Prof. Nathalie Balaban (HUJI Physics) and the late Prof. Naftali Tishbi (HUJI CS). Prior to this I worked with Prof. David Engelberg (HUJI Biochemistry) on MAP Kinases.


Yitzchak Vaknin

MSc Student

My two biggest passions are science and art. I have a BSc in Life Science with an emphasis on biotechnology from The Open University of Israel, as well as a BSc in Computer Science from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In addition to my MSc studies in Computer Science, I'm also a ceramics and glass design BFA student at Bezalel Academy of Art and Design. I'm interested in machine learning involving scRNA-seq data, in particular identifying and utilizing spatial features and properties of microenvironments in the tissue derived from single-cell data. Not many know this about me, but I'm fascinated by fashion and Jewish philosophy, and in my free time I like to play piano and guitar.


Michal Erez

MSc Student

I have a bachelor degree in Computer Science and Cognitive Science as part of the Amirim excellence program at the Hebrew University. I take great interest in utilizing computational tools to reach insights regarding cellular interactions and properties. In my free time I enjoy  playing the saxophone, cooking, and playing soccer.


Bar Melinarskiy

Undergraduate Researcher 

I am an undergraduate student in computer science and computational biology at the Hebrew University. My main interest includes utilizing ML models on biological Big-Data sets. In my free time, You can find me cooking, reading, or over-documenting my cat.


Yehuda Mescheloff

Undergraduate Researcher 

I am an undergraduate student in physics and computer science as part of the Amirim excellence program at the Hebrew university. I'm fascinated by the ways that simple principles create the complexity we see and by the ways we find to understand the world around as. I am currently working on Ising-model simulations to better understand self-organization of complex systems. In my free time I enjoy reading, traveling and listening to music.


Hiking Trail

Justas Dauparas - Postdoctoral Fellow (2018 - 2019)

Edvin Memet - Postdoctoral Fellow (joint with Sergey Ovchinnikov, Harvard) (2019 - 2021)

Marius Lange - Visiting Research Fellow (Summer 2021)

Shmuel Orenstein - MSc Student (joint with Or Zuk, HUJI) (2021 - 2022)

Guy Segal - MSc Researcher (2020 - 2021)

Maoz Nahum - Undergraduate Researcher (2020 - 2021)

Dror Einav - Undergraduate Researcher (2020 - 2021)

Yoni Bornfeld - Undergraduate Researcher (2021 - 2022)

Interested in working with me? Please get in touch

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