Description and lab research areas:
Aerosols participate in many environmental processes affecting the climate, human health and ecosystems. Atmospheric aerosols and dust storms carry with them a myriad of microorganisms that, once deposited, can affect an ecosystem’s composition and functioning. We are studying the microbial communities in atmospheric aerosols and transported dust using state-of-the-art genomic and bioinformatics methods. By collecting aerosols and extracting the DNA and RNA, deep sequencing and metagenomic analyses allow us to understand the structure of the microorganisms’ communities, transport of pathogens, and the potential function of these microorganisms.
Some relevant publications:
- Gat, Y. Mazar, E. Cytryn, Y. Rudich, Origin-Dependent Variations of the Atmospheric Microbiome Diversity in Eastern Mediterranean Dust Storms, Environmental Science and Technology, 51, 6709-6718 (2017).
- Lang-Yona, F. Öztürk, D. Gat, M. Aktürk, E. Dikmen, P. Zarmpas, M. Tsagkaraki, N. Michalopoulos, A. Birgül, P. Binnur, K. Karakuş, Y. Rudich, Atmospheric Hitchhikers: Long Range Aerial Transport of Microorganisms by Mineral Dust Correlates with Air Mass Meteorological Parameters and Chemical Composition, Science of the Total Environment, 725, 138227 (2020).
- Gat, N. Reicher, S. Shechter, M. Alayof, M.D. Tarn, B.V. Wyld, R. Zimmermann, Y. Rudich, Size-resolved community structure of bacteria and fungi transported by dust in the Middle East, Frontiers in Microbiology, 12, 744117, (2021).
- Lang-Yona, J.M. Flore, R. Haviv, A. Alberti, J. Poulain, C. Belser, M. Trainic, D. Gat, H-J. Ruscheweyh, P. Wincke, S. Sunagawa, Y. Rudich, I. Koren, A. Vardi, Terrestrial and marine influence on atmospheric bacterial diversity over the north Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, Communications Earth and Environment, 3,121 (2022).
Required elements for research-based postdoc applications
Ph.D. in environmental microbiology or environmental engineering. Proficiency in molecular-biology tools, e.g.: PCR, qPCR, DNA extraction, etc. Familiarity with DNA next-generation sequencing and analysis of sequencing results. A background in atmospheric and analytical chemistry and technology is beneficial. Strong publication record. Additional requirements include practice with handling and interpretation of multi-modal data sets; complex data analysis, computer programming skills, experience in working in a research team environment, good oral and written communication skills, interpersonal skills, initiative, and creative and innovative thinking.
Contact information: Prof. Yinon Rudich
Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences
Weizmann Institute, Rehovot 76100, Israel
Tel: 972 8 934 4237