1981-84 BSc Ben-Gurion University
1984-91 PhD Ben-Gurion University
1992-94 post-doc Harvard University
1995-97 Adjunct Lecturer Ben-Gurion University
1997-02 Lecturer Ben-Gurion University
2002-03 Sen. Lecturer Ben-Gurion University
2003-present Sen. Lecturer University of Haifa
My primary interest is the biological bases of learning and memory in the mammalian brain.
We are using an olfactory conditioning paradigm, in which rats are trained to memorize odors. Subsequently, we study the single cell mechanisms that mediate olfactory learning.
Our research is performed in collaboration with other labs in Israel and abroad, and combines cellular neurophysiology with biochemistry and morphology with behavioral neuroscience.
Our data show that odor training results with a series of cellular modifications in intrinsic and synaptic properties of piriform (olfactory) cortex pyramidal neurons. We are currently studying the sub-cellular mechanisms the enable the induction and maintenance of such learning-relevant changes, and their significance to the neuronal networks' ability to store memories.
Quinlan E., Lebel, D., Brosh, I. and Barkai, E. (2004) A molecular mechanism for stabilization of learning-induced synaptic modifications. Neuron, 41:185-192.
Saar, D. and Barkai, E. (2003) Long-term modifications in intrinsic neuronal properties and rule learning in rats. European journal of Neuroscience, 17(12):2727-34.
Saar, D., Grossman, Y. and Barkai, E. (2002) Learning-induced enhancement of post-synaptic potentials in pyramidal neurons. The Journal of Neurophysiology, 87: 2358-2363.
Saar, D., Grossman, Y. and Barkai, E. (2001) Long lasting Cholinergic modulation underlies rule learning in rats. The Journal of Neuroscience, 21(4):1385-1392.
Shira Knafo (joint with Fred Liberst, BGU)
Inbar Brosh (joint with David Golomb, BG)
Itai Zlecer (joint with Yoram Grossman, BGU)
Alexander Trachnisvili (joint with Gal Richter-Levin)
Ari Naimark (joint with Hagit Cohen, BGU)