Young and Full of Life Sciences

Israeli biologist Tommy Kaplan only became interested in biology at age 25. Seven years later, he has won a prestigious US prize for his work.

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Karin Kloosterman,, | updated: 07:20

Kaplan and Family
Kaplan and Family
courtesy of Israel21c

Israeli biologist Tommy Kaplan only became interested in biology at the age of 25. Seven years later, he has won a prestigious U.S. prize for his work.
Dr. Tommy Kaplan's interest in biology started as a graduate student at Israel's Hebrew University of Jerusalem. As a computer science student, aged 25, he went to work as a programmer at his wife's biology lab. Today the 32-year-old scientist has won a prestigious award from General Electric and Science magazine for his work in biology.

Kaplan, a Ph.D. graduate from Hebrew U. and who is now based at the University of California at Berkeley doing post-doctoral research, is one of three other young scientists to win the GE & Science Prize for Young Life Scientists. The other winners are from the United States, Germany, and Japan.

Born and raised in Jerusalem, Kaplan won the $5,000 prestigious prize and publication in Science, for his essay "From DNA Sequence to Chromatin Dynamics: Computational Analysis of Transcriptional Regulation."

"Basically we have the same DNA in all our cells," he tells ISRAEL21c. "But the cells in the body are very different from each other. This is the outcome of a complex system of switches which determines which proteins will be expressed in which tissues, under which conditions."

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