Omri Shelef 2023-2024

Institution of PhD:
Tel Aviv University
Academic Discipline of PhD:
Department of Organic Chemistry
PhD Advisor/s:
Prof. Doron Shabat, Department of Organic Chemistry, Tel Aviv University
Dissertation Topic:
Design, Synthesis and Application of Chemiluminescent Probes for Bacterial Identification, ENPP Detection and DNA Sequencing

Since he was in school, Omri has been fascinated by the interface between chemistry and biology. Following his military service, he began his BSc in chemistry and biology at Tel Aviv University. During his BSc studies, he received a Ratner Center scholarship and a commemoration scholarship and was mentioned twice on the Dean’s list, and he completed his degree summa cum laude. Between the second and third years of his undergraduate studies, Omri participated in a summer project in the lab of Professor Doron Shabat, the results of which led to his first publication on the development of a novel chemiluminescent probe for early detection of melanoma.

Omri is currently a direct-track PhD student at Tel Aviv University, where he is continuing his research in Prof. Shabat’s lab. His research aims to develop highly sensitive, cost-effective, and simple-to-operate diagnostic tools to improve day-to-day disease diagnosis. Chemiluminescence (CL) is the emission of light as a result of a chemical reaction. Due to CL’s unique properties, it is considered one of the most powerful diagnostic tools for biosensing and bioimaging. Taking advantage of this remarkable sensitivity, utilizing fundamental synthetic organic chemistry, Omri developed chemiluminescent diagnostic tools for detecting, identifying, and monitoring viral infections, bacterial infections, and cancers, all of which were later published.

Alongside his research, Omri enjoys teaching and studying organic chemistry. During his undergraduate studies he volunteered to teach chemistry to students with learning disabilities, and he is currently a teaching assistant in the advanced organic chemistry course and a lab instructor in the advanced organic chemistry student lab.