1982 …2021

Research activity per year

Personal profile

About Me

Benny Motro is a senior lecturer at the Faculty of Life Science of Bar-Ilan University in Israel. He received his PhD in molecular virology from the Faculty of Medicine, Hebrew University of Jerusalem under the guidance of Prof. Eli Keshet. He performed his postdoc training in the laboratory of Prof. Alan Bernstein, Mount Sinai Hospital Research Institute, Toronto, Canada (1990-1993) on the role of c-kit protein kinase in mammalian embryonic development. He received Alon fellowship (1993-1996), and moved to the Faculty of Life Sciences at Bar-Ilan University. His areas of interest include: Elucidation of protein kinase's role in mammalian embryonic development and the cell cycle with an emphasis on the Nek kinases.

Research Fields


A. The cellular and developmental roles of the mammalian Nek kinases:

The NIMA-related (Nek) family of protein kinase is emerging as evolutionarily conserved and key cell cycle regulatory proteins. Mammalian genomes harbor 11 members of this family, several of which were first cloned and characterized in our laboratory. The functions of these enzymes are still quite mysterious and the major aims of our lab are:

  1. To decipher the cellular and developmental roles of the Nek kinases mainly by employing classical and inducible gene targeting approaches.
  2. To identify the signaling modules in which Nek7 participate. A methodology designated Stable Isotopic Labeling with Amino Acids in Cell Culture (SILAC) enables us to identify proteins differentially expressed or modified in wt versus Nek7 mutant MEF cells. The lists of Nek7-affected proteins suggest novel functions in cytoskeleton arrangement and cell adhesion, roles which are currently substantiated and investigated.  

B. The molecular functions of Codanin-1

The congenital dyserythropoietic anemias (CDAs) are a group of rare inherited disorders characterized by impaired erythropoiesis and characteristic cytopathology of erythroid cells. In collaboration with Prof. Hannah Tamary from Schneider Children's Medical Center, we are studying the major etiological agent of CDA-1, the codanin-1 protein. Mutant mice and cells serve to identify erythropoietic-specific function as well as ubiquitous molecular functions.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Jan 1985Jan 1989

Award Date: 1 Jan 1989

Master's Degree, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Oct 1981Jun 1982

Award Date: 30 Jun 1982

Bachelor, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Oct 1978Jun 1980

Award Date: 30 Jun 1980


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