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Enviornmental paleoepigenetics New paper from the lab is now published in Molecular Biology & Evolution. This paper suggests a forward-looking research direction, to which we call environmental paleoepigenetics. The idea is to use known response patterns of DNA methylation to changes in environmental conditions in order to reconstruct the environments in which ancient individuals lived. We review what is known today about such response patterns, and demonstrate the applicability of our approach by showing that DNA methylation of ancient hunter-gatherers are compatible with hungery seasons in current African populations.

David Gokhman, Anat Malul, Liran Carmel (2017). Inferring past environments from ancient epigenomes, Molecular Biology & Evolution 34:2429-2438.

conferenceLiran Carmel was an invited speaker at the Latsis Symposium 2017 that was dedicated to transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, and its impact for biology and society. Held in Zurich, Switzerland.

New Scientist Our work was covered in New Scientist. Andy Coghlan wrote a piece based on the BioRxiv copy of a paper that is yet awaiting publication in a peer-reviewed journal.

grant We have become National Geographic Explorers, obtaining a research grant from the National Geographic Society. This funds an interesting projects in paleo-epigenetics.

graduationCongratulations to Michal Chorev, whose PhD had been approved today.

functional introns New paper from the lab was accepted as a full-length article to the proceedings of IEEE International Workshop on Machine Learning for Signal Processing, to be held in September in Tokyo, Japan. This paper describes the more technical details of our joint work with Jacob Goldberger, and his student Alan Bekker, from Bar-Ilan University. These algorithms underlie our ability to identify human functional introns, see our Scientific Reports publication.

Alan Joseph Bekker, Michal Chorev, Liran Carmel, Jacob Goldberger (2017). Identification of functional introns via deep neural network with a restricted noisy channel, Proceedings of the IEEE International Workshop on Machine Learning for Signal Processing, in press.

Research Interests:
Our lab deals with a host of topics in the general fields of molecular evolution and genetics. Among the topics that are currently pursued are:
  • Human evolution. Recent advances in ancient DNA sequencing yielded genomes (either shotgun sequences with varying degrees of coverage, or SNP arrays) of many ancient anatomically modern humans, as well as of Neanderthals and Denisovans. This open unique opportunities to study the genetic aspects of the very recent lag of our own evolution.
  • Paleo-epigenetics. We developed a technique to reconstruct full DNA methylation maps from high-coverage ancient genomes, and use it to study evolutionary changes in gene regulation, ancient environments and phenotypic adaptations.
  • Paleo-genetics. We study the genetic structure of ancient populations in Israel.
  • RNA biology. We are studying many aspects of RNA biology, including splicing, nonsense-mediated decay, 3'-end processing, and circular RNAs.
  • Multivariate data analysis. My lab is also active in some fields of applied mathematics: multivariate analysis, statistical pattern recognition, data visualization, and machine learning.
A quick summary of our research on archaic gene regulation. A narration accompanied by whiteboard animation.

Interview Yoav Mathov was interviewed in Makademia.

MovieLiran was interviewed at London et Kirshenbaum about Otzi's helicobacter. Minutes 29:42 to 34:33.

Our Web Servers
Movie Gene ORGANizer connects genes to the body parts where their phenotype is observed. Given a list of genes, Gene ORGANizer finds body parts in which these genes are enriched or depleted. The paper is about to appear in the webserver issue of NAR, but can already be found online.

Movie JuncDB is a gene exon-intron architecture comparative database, covering nearly 40,000 sets of orthologous transcripts across 88 eukaryotic species. It had been published in the database issue of NAR.
Contact Information:
Room 2-342
Department of Genetics, The Alexander Silberman Institute of Life Sciences, Faculty of Science,
the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Edmond J. Safra Campus, Givat Ram, Jerusalem 91904, Israel
telephone +972 (2) 658-5103
fax +972 (2) 658-4856
email liran.carmel @
The Hebrew University
Useful links: for more details and full list