Lab News

13/01/2017 Paper on vectorial representation of spatial goals in the hippocampus of bats is published in Science.
The study, led by Ph.D student Ayelet Sarel, describes the discovery of hippocampal neurons in bats that represent the direction and distance to goals - a vectorial representation of navitational goals. This finding fills a central gap in the neurobiology of navigation - how are navigational goals represnted in the brain: We propose that these vectorial goal-direction and goal-distance cells may underlie goal-directed navigation across species.
 
15/11/2016 Ayelet Sarel wins the prestigious Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds Ph.D fellowship.  Congratulations, Ayelet !  
01/08/2016 Two papers from the lab are published in Annual Reviews of Neuroscience and in Nature Neuroscience.
The review in Annu Rev Neurosci, led by Ph.D student Arseny Finkelstein, discusses 3-D maps and compasses in the brain - focusing on the hippocampal formation of rodents and bats.   The study in Nature Neurosci, led by Ph.D student Maya Geva-Sagiv, was titled "Hippocampal global remapping for different sensory modalities in flying bats", and it demonstrated orthogonal hippocampal maps for the same space under two different sensory systems (vision vs. echolocation) - which argues against a hippocampal abstract map but suggests a "cognitive atlas" model.
01/07/2016 Shir Maimon and Dan Blum join the lab as M.Sc students.
Welcome, Shir and Dan !
19/05/2016 Arseny Finkelstein and Ayelet Sarel win prizes for their Ph.D and M.Sc research: Arseny wins the John F. Kennedy prize for outstanding Ph.D, and Ayelet Sarel wins the Dean's excellence prize for outstanding M.Sc.  The prizes will be awarded at the 2016 Weizmann Institute graduation ceremony on June 1.  Congratulations, Arseny and Ayelet !
01/04/2016 Arseny Finkelstein receives the Young Investigator Award from the International Society for Neuroethology (ISN).
The prize was awarded at the 2016 Neuroethology Congress in Montevideo.  Congratulations, Arseny!
01/01/2016 Nachum Ulanovsky wins his second ERC grant (European Research Council - consolidator grant: project NATURAL_BAT_NAV).
The 2 million Euro grant will fund a broad set of studies on the neural basis of natural navigation: representation of goals, 3-D spaces and 1-km distances in the hippocampal formation of bats.
21/12/2015 Didi Omer wins the best poster prize in the annual meeting of the Israel Society For Neuroscience (ISFN) in Eilat.
Congratulations, Didi !
19/10/2015 Nachum Ulanovsky receives the SfN Young Investigator Award (co-shared with Ed Boyden).  The prize was awarded to Nachum at the SfN meeting in Chicago by SfN president Steve Hyman. Nachum is the first Israeli neuroscientist to win this prestigious award. See SfN Press Release on the 2015 SfN Young Investigator Award, and a photo from the ceremony.
11/06/2015 Arseny Finkelstein wins the Capranica Neuroethology Prize from the International Society for Neuroethology (ISN).
The prize was awarded for Arseny's study on 3-D head-direction cells, which was published earlier this year in Nature.  Arseny will receive the prize during the 2016 Neuroethology Congress in Montevideo.  Congratulations, Arseny!
22/01/2015 Review on the neural basis of spatial cognition in bats and rats is published in Nature Reviews Neuroscience.
The review, led by Ph.D student Maya Geva-Sagiv, describes the proposed transformations from incoming sensory information into spatial codes (place cells, grid cells, etc.), and how these cells in turn could underlie large-scale navigation. The review emphasizes the critical need to study the neural basis of long-distance natural navigation in mammals - which could be quite different from findings in 1x1-m boxes.
08/01/2015 Paper on 3D head-direction cells in bats is published a a full Article in Nature.
The study, led by Ph.D student Arseny Finkelstein, describes the first recordings of 3D head-direction cells in mammals. Surprisingly, head-direction was encoded in a toroidal rather than spherical coordinate system, making the representation of 3D head-direction both commutative and continuous. These neurons form a 3D neural compass that could underlie 3D navigation
09/12/2014 Tamir Eliav wins the best poster prize in the annual meeting of the Israel Society For Neuroscience (ISFN) in Eilat.
Congratulations, Tamir !
03/11/2014 David (Didi) Omer joins the lab as a postdoc.
Welcome, Didi !
24/10/2014 Michael Yartsev, who recently graduated from the lab, takes a tenure-track position of Assistant Professor at UC Berkeley - and will start a new Bat-Lab at Berkeley in the summer of 2015.
Congratulations, Michael !
01/07/2014 Ayelet Sarel joins the lab as an M.Sc student.
Welcome, Ayelet !
17/12/2013 Maya Geva-Sagiv wins the best poster prize in the annual meeting of the Israel Society For Neuroscience (ISFN) in Eilat.
Congratulations, Maya !
28/11/2013 Nachum Ulanovsky receives the Bernard Katz Prize in Neuroscience, administered by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.
The prize was awarded to Nachum by Bert Sakmann at a ceremony in Heidelberg.
11/11/2013 Michael Yartsev receives the Donald B. Lindsley Prize in Behavioral Neuroscience, as well as the Eppendorf & Science prize for Neurobiology - both prizes awarded for Michael's Ph.D work with bats.
The Lindsely prize was awarded to Michael by the SfN President Larry Swanson, at a plenary lecture during the SfN 2013 meeting in San Diego. The Lindsely prize is awarded in recognition for the best Ph.D thesis in Behavioral Neuroscience.  This is the first time that a Ph.D graduate of an Israeli university received this distinguished award since its establishment in 1979.  The Eppendorf & Science prize was also awarded for the first time to an Israeli.  Congratulations Michael for winning these 2 prestigeous prizes in one SfN conference!
01/08/2013 Gily Ginosar and Tamir Eliav join the lab as M.Sc students.
Welcome, Gily and Tamir !
01/07/2013 Alon Rubin defends his Ph.D thesis.
Only 1 month after getting married. Double congratulations, Alon !
19/04/2013 Paper on 3D place cells in flying bats is published in Science.
The study, led by Ph.D student Michael Yartsev, describes the first recordings of single neurons in freely-flying animals. The main findings were that in the hippocampus of bats, the representation of 3D volumetric space is uniform, nearly-isotropic, and is based on a rate code.
18/07/2012 Michael Yartsev defends his Ph.D thesis.
The first Ph.D student to graduate from the lab. Congratulations, Michael !
27/03/2012 Nachum receives the Krill Prize for Excellence in Scientific Research, from the Wolf Foundation.
The prize was awarded in a ceremony in Jerusalem.
02/11/2011 Paper on grid cells without theta oscillations is published in Nature.
The study, led by Ph.D student Michael Yartsev, provided the first direct demonstration of grid cells in a non-rodent mammalian species. Importantly, grid cells existed in bats without continuous theta oscillations in the local field potential or in spike trains - strongly arguing against theta-based computational models of grid cells.
13/09/2011 Paper on first GPS tracking of bats in the wild is published in PNAS.
The paper, led by Asaf Tsoar in collaboration with Ran Nathan, provided the first evidence for large-scale cognitive map in a mammal.
01/09/2011 Dori Derdikman finishes his postdoc in the lab and takes a tenure-track position of Assistant Professor at the Technion.
Congratulations, Dori !
01/08/2011 Yossi Yovel, who recently finished his postdoc in the lab, takes a tenure-track position of Assistant Professor at Tel Aviv University.
Congratulations, Yossi!
08/07/2011 Nachum Ulanovsky wins the prestigious ERC grant (European Research Council - project NEUROBAT).
The 1.5 million Euro grant will fund a broad set of studies on neural codes for 2D and 3D space in the hippocampus and entorhinal cortex of bats.
05/02/2010 Paper on optimal localization using biosonar is publisehd in Science.
The study, led by postdoc Yossi Yovel, provided the first example of an active-sensing animal that exhibits a localization behavior which follows a theoretical (mathematical) optimization principle.
15/04/2009 First electrophysiological recordings in the newly-set lab.
Getting there !
01/09/2008 Renovation of the lab has finished - getting the keys to the new lab today!
Now we can start working.
15/08/2007 Nachum Ulanovsky arrives as a new faculty member (Assistant Professor) to the Department of Neurobiology of the Weizmann Institute of Science.
Starting renovation of the new lab.