Roichman Lab

School of Chemistry and the School of Physics & Astronomy, Tel Aviv University

Open positions

We are always looking for motivated people trained in exact sciences, engineering or life sciences, to join the lab. An example of the current projects in the lab:

  1. Building information machines both microscopic and macroscopic.
  2. Statisical mechanics out of thermal equilibrium in driven colloidal suspensions.
  3. Studying the self-assembly of active networks.

Specific projects

Intelligent cargo transport by dumb motile agents

Often, inspiration from biology leads to the founding of new research fields. One such example is the large scale collective motion observed in flocks of birds, schools of fish, swarms of insects and even tissue growth and evolution. We study collective transport in a model system which operates on simple physical rules. Specifically, we use battery powered bristle robots (Hexbug nano, Innovation first) that convert mechanical vibrations to forward motion. The robots are placed within a confining mobile frame and interact locally via hard core repulsion with each other and with the frame. Long range interactions between Hexbugs arise only through the confining frame. The frame itself can be rigid or flexible. This model system, according to our preliminary results, features of the rich phenomenology observed in cargo transport by insect colonies. We are seeking an outstanding students that wish to take part in this inovative project.
a) Commercially available bristle robots (Hexbug nano, Innovation first) are placed within a cardboard ring attaches to six small weights. b) To facilitate single particle tracking of the Hexbugs and the mobile cardboard frame, the surface, frame and Hexbugs were dyed in black. Green and red stickers were attached to follow the head and tail of the bugs (see inset) and blue stickers were attached to the small weights on the frame. c) The Hexbugs tend to self-assemble into clusters, occasionally, with a finite lifetime. The motion of the Hexbugs causes the frame to move in either a circular or straight path when the cluster in formed. d) Partial dissociation of the cluster and reformation cause a change in direction as seen from the trajectory of the frame.

Biophysical properties of chromatin modifiers in neural development

We are seeking an outstanding student for PhD\postodtoc for a challenging project investigating the Biophysical properties of chromatin modifiers in neural development. The aim of the project is to uncover the mechanisms by which transcription factors search and find regulatory sites in the context of higher order chromatin organization in living cells during neural differentiation. The study is conducted in collaboration between the laboratories of Prof. Ashery-Padan (Faculty of Medicine) and the laboratory of Yael Roichman (Exact Sciences) and involves the use of human stem-cells, molecular-biology tools, high resolution imaging and computational approaches. Students with background in physics, biology and computational biology are welcome to apply.
Please send CV to either Ruth Ashery-Padan (ruthash@tauex.tau.ac.il) or to Yael Roichman (roichman@tauex.tau.ac.il )