Improving Health & Medicine

Decoding the Functions of Long Non-coding RNA


In this presentation, Prof. Igor Ulitsky discusses his investigation of the biology of a subtype of genetic material—long non-coding RNA (lncRNA)—an enigmatic class of RNA molecules which comprise over 99% of our genetic material. Despite their prevalence, little is actually known about how they function. 

lncRNAs have similarities to other types of RNA molecules, such as being transcribed from DNA and have a single-strand structure. However, the difference is that IncRNA do not encode proteins. 

Prof. Ulitsky’s discoveries have unlocked the potential of using lncRNAs as both therapeutic agents and targets with promising potential treatment of diseases such as cancer, brain injury, and epilepsy.

Two Weizmann Institute scientists were among three researchers honored on August 2, 2021 by the New York Academy of Sciences as they celebrated the 2020 and 2021 Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists in Israel at the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Jerusalem. The awards are given annually to three outstanding, early-career faculty from Israeli universities in three categories—Life Sciences, Physical Sciences & Engineering, and Chemistry. The Weizmann laureates honored at the symposium were Prof. Igor Ulitsky and Prof. Emmanuel Levy.