Meet Dr. Moshe Dessau, head of the Structural Biology of Infectious Diseases lab at The Azrieli School of Medicine of Bar-Ilan University.
Research at Dr. Dessau’s lab focuses on viruses common in developing countries. His long-term research objective is to detect biological processes indigenous to those viruses and parasites, in order to develop groundbreaking treatments. Dr. Dessau uses structural biology and biophysical techniques to study the function of viral proteins on the atomic level. Dessau says structural biology analyzes biological processes using the laws of physics and chemistry, and enables scientists to understand these mechanisms in an atomic resolution.
Of his profession, Dr. Dessau says, “I believe medical research should focus not only on the big medical ailments of the Western world, such as cancer, diabetes or AIDS, but also try and cure diseases of the Third World.”
Dr. Dassau is a crystallographer (crystallography is an experimental science for determining the arrangement of atoms in the crystalline solids), biophysicist and biochemist. He holds a PhD in Biochemistry from Tel Aviv University, and has completed a post doc fellowship at Yale.
Deciding to move his family back to Israel, settle in the community of Kamon, and join the School of Medicine in the Galilee as a researcher was no fluke. “Ever since my army service in the Galilee, I knew I wanted to raise my family in this region. And when I heard in the 1990’s that a School of Medicine was being established here, I made up my mind that one day I would join the medical school as a researcher. I considered being one of the first members of the School’s faculty as both a professional and ideological opportunity that would enable me to be part of a team steering it towards scientific and academic achievements.”