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שלח באימייל הדפס
Name: Ilan Levin, Ph.D. (Researcher)
Units: Plant SciencesVegetable and Field Crops
Research Interests / Job description  
Tel:  03-9683477
Cell: 050-6220475
Email:  vclevini@volcani.agri.gov.il  levinila@int.gov.il

Research scientist, Plant Genetics 

Research Interests / Job description
- Molecular analysis of fruit quality traits including phytonutrient and sugar content.

- Photomorphogenesis and its relation to plant development and fruit quality traits.

- Molecular analysis of quantitative trait loci associated with Tomato Yellow Leaf Curl Virus.

 Selected recent publications

Schaffer, A. A., Petreikov, M., Miron, D., Fogelman, M., Spiegelman, M., Bnei-Moshe, Z., Shen, S., Granot, D., Hadas, R., Dai, N., Levin, I., Bar, M., Friedman, M., Pilowsky, M., Gilboa, N. and Chen, L. (1999). Modification of carbohydrate content in developing tomato fruit.  Hortscience, 34(6): 1024-1027.

Levin, I., Gilboa, N., Yeselson, E., Shen, S. and Schaffer, A.A. (2000).  Frg, a major locus that modulates fructose to glucose ratio in mature tomato fruit. Theoretical and Applied Genetics, 100: 256-262.

Schaffer, A.A., Levin, I., Oguz, I., Petreikov, M., Cincarevsky, F., Yeselson, Y., Shen, S., Gilboa, N., and Bar, M.(2000). ADPglucose pyrophosphorylase activity and starch accumulation in immature tomato fruit: the effect of a Lycopersicon hirsutum-derived introgression encoding the large subunit. Plant Science, 152: 135-144.

Miron, D., Petreikov, M., Carmi, N., Shen, S., Levin, I., Granot, D., Zamski, E., and Schaffer, A.A. (2002). Sucrose uptake, invertase localization and gene expression in developing fruit of Lycopersicon esculentum and sucrose accumulating Lycopersicon hirsutum. Physiologia Plantarum, 115: 35-47.

Dai, N., Kandel-Kfir, M., Petreikov, M., Hanael, R., Levin, I., Ricard, B., Rothan, C., Schaffer, A.A. and Granot, D. (2002). The tomato hexokinase LeHXK1 cloning, mapping, expression pattern and phylogenetic relationships. Plant Science, 163 (3): 581-590.

Burger, Y., Saar, U., Katzir, N., Harry, S.P., Yeselson, Y., Levin, I. and Schaffer A.A. (2002). A single recessive gene for sucrose accumulation in Cucumis melo fruit. J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci., 127(6): 938-943.

Levin, I., Frankel, P., Gilboa, N., Tanny, S., and Lalazar, A. (2003). The tomato dark green mutation is a novel allele of the tomato homolog of the DEETIOLATED1 gene. Theoretical and Applied Genetics, 106: 454-460.

Gidoni, D., Fuss, E., Burbidge, A., Speckmann, G-J., James, S., Nijkamp, D., Mett, A., Feiler, J., Smoker, M., de Vroomen, M.J., Leader, D., Liharska, T., Groenendijk, J., Coppoolse, E., Smit, J.J.M., Levin, I., de Both, M., Schuch, W., Jones, J.D.G., Tayler, I.B., Theres, K., and van Haaren, M.J.J. (2003). Multi-functional T-DNA/Ds tomato lines designed for gene cloning and molecular and physical dissection of tomato genome. Plant Molecular Biology, 51(1): 83-98.

Lieberman, M., Segev, O., Gilboa, N., Lalazar, A., and Levin, I. (2004). The tomato homolog of the gene encoding UV DAMAGED DNA BINDING protein 1 (DDB1) underlined as the gene that causes the high pigment-1 mutant phenotype. Theoretical and Applied Genetics, 108: 1574-1581.

Levin, I., Lalazar, A., Bar, M. and Schaffer, A.A. (2004). Non GMO fruit factories. Modulating metabolic pathways in the tomato fruit. J. of Industrial Crops and Products, 20: 29-36.

Bino, R.J., de Vos, C.H.R, Lieberman, M., Hall, R.D., Bovy, A., Jonker, H.H., Tikunov, Y., Lommen, A., Moco, S., and  Levin, I. (2005). The light-hyperresponsive high pigment-2dg mutation of tomato: alterations in the fruit metabolome. New Phytologist, 166: 427-438.

Khasdan, V., Levin, I., Rosner, A., Morin, S., Kontsedalov, S., Maslenin, L., and Horowitz, A.R. (2005). DNA markers for identifying biotypes B and Q of Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) and studying  population dynamics. Bulletin of  Entomological Research, 95: 605-613.

Steinitz, B., Amitay, A., Gaba, V., Tabib, Y., Keller, M., and Levin, I. (2006). A simple plant regeneration-ability assay in a range of Lycopersicon species. Plant Cell Tiss. Organ Cult., 84(3):269-278.

Levin, I., de Vos, C.H.R., Tadmor, Y., Bovy, A., Lieberman, M., Oren-Shamir, M., Segev, O., Kolotilin, I., Keller, M., Ovadia, R., Meir, A., and Bino, R. J. (2006). High pigment tomato mutants- more than just lycopene (a review). Israel Journal of Plant Sciences, 54: 179-190.

Petreikov, M., Shen, S., Yeselson, Y., Levin, I., Bar, M., Schaffer, A.A. (2006). Temporally extended gene expression of the ADP-Glc pyrophosphorylase large subunit (AgpL1) leads to increased enzyme activity in developing tomato fruit. Planta, 224: 1465-1479

Levin, I., N. Gilboa, F. Cincarevsky, I. Oguz , M. Petreikov, Y. Yeselson, S. Shen, M. Bar, and Schaffer, A.A. (2006).  Epistatic interaction between two unlinked loci derived from introgressions from Lycopersicon hirsutum further modulates the fructose to glucose ratio in the mature tomato fruit. Israel Journal of Plant Sciences, 54: 215-222.

Kolotilin, I., Koltai, H., Tadmor, Y., Bar-Or, C., Reuveni, M., Meir, A., Nahon, S., Shlomo, H., Chen, L., and Levin, I. (2007). Transcriptional profiling of high pigment-2dg tomato mutant links early fruit plastid biogenesis with its overproduction of phytonutrients. Plant physiol., 145: 389-401.

Vardi, A., Levin, I., and Carmi, N. (2008). Induction of seedlessness in citrus: from classical techniques to emerging biotechnological approaches. Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science, 133: 117-126.

Sapir, M., Oren-Shamir, M., Ovadia, R., Reuveni, M., Evenor, D., Tadmor, Y., Nahon, S., Shlomo, H., Chen, L., Meir, A., and Levin, I. (2008). Molecular Aspects of Anthocyanin fruit Tomato in Relation to high pigment-1. Journal of Heredity, 99: 292-303.

Caspi, N., Levin, I., Chaimoviz, D., and Reuveni, M. (2008). A mutation in the tomato DDB1 gene affects cell and chloroplast compartment size and CDT1 transcript. Plant Signaling & Behavior, 3: 641-649.

Paran, I., and Levin, I. (2008). Mapping and tagging of genes controlling simple-inherited traits. In: Principles & Practices of Plant Molecular Mapping & Breeding (Kole, C., and Abbott, A.G. (Ed.). Science Publishers, Inc; New Hampshire, USA; Plymouth, UK. p. 139-174.

López-Ráez,  J.A.,   Charnikhova,  T.,   Mulder,  P.,   Kohlen,  W.,  Bino,  R.,  Levin,  I., Bouwmeester, H. (2008). Susceptibility of the tomato mutant high pigment-2dg (hp-2dg) to Orobanche spp infection. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 56: 6326-6332.

Petreikov, M., Yeselson, L., Shen, S., Efrati, A., Bar, M., Levin, I.,  Schaffer, A.A.  (2009). Carbohydrate balance and accumulation during development of near-isogenic tomato lines differing in the AGPase-LS1 alleles. J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci. 134:134-140.

Lavi, N., Tadmor ,Y., Meir, A., Bechar, A., Oren-Shamir, M., Ovadia, R., Reuveni,  M., Nahon, S., Shlomo, H., Chen, L., Levin, I. (2009). Characterization of the INTENSE PIGMENT Tomato Genotype Emphasizing Targeted Fruit Metabolites and Chloroplast Biogenesis. J. Agric. Food Chem. 57:4818-4826.

Anbinder, I., Reuveni, M., Azari, R., Paran, I., Nahon S., Shlomo. H., Chen, L., Lapidot, M., Levin, I. (2009). Molecular dissection of Tomato leaf curl virus resistance in tomato line TY172 derived from Solanum peruvianum. Theor. Appl. Genet. 119:519-530.

Levin, I. (2009). Regulating phytonutrient levels in plants - towards modification of plant metabolism for human health. In: Recent Advances in Plant Biotechnology (Kaufman, P.B. (Ed.). Springer. p. 289-330.

Azari, R., Tadmor ,Y., Meir, A.,  Reuveni, M., Evenor, D., Nahon, S., Shlomo, H., Chen, L., Levin, I. (2010). Light signaling genes and their manipulation towards modulation of phytonutrient content in tomato fruits. Biotechnol. Adv. 28:108-118.

Azari, R., Reuveni, M., Evenor, D., Nahon, S., Shlomo, H., Chen, L., Levin, I. (2010). Over-expression of UV-damaged DNA binding protein 1 links plant development and phytonutrient accumulation in high pigment-1 tomato. J. Exp. Bot. 61:3627-3637.

Kolotilin, I., Koltai, H., Bar-Or, C., Nahon, S., Chen, L., Shlomo, H., Levin, I., Reuveni, M. (2011). Expressing yeast SAMdc gene confers broad changes in gene expression and alters fatty acid composition in tomato fruit. Physiol. Plant. 142:211-23.

Schreiber, G., Reuveni, M., Evenor. D., Oren-Shamir, M., Ovadia, R., Sapir-Mir, M., Bootbool-Man, A., Nahon, S., Shlomo, H., Chen, L., Levin, I. (2012). ANTHOCYANIN1 from Solanum chilense is more efficient in accumulating anthocyanin metabolites than its Solanum lycopersicum counterpart in association with the anthocyanin fruit phenotype of tomato. Theor. Appl. Genet. 124:295-307.

Levin, I. and Schaffer A.A. (2013). Mapping and tagging of genes controlling simple-inherited traits. In: Genetics, Genomics, and Breeding of Tomato (Liedl, B.E., Labate, J.A, Stommel, J.R. Slade, A., and Kole, C. (Ed.). CRC Press; Boca Raton, Florida, USA. p. 109-149.

Lati, R.N., Filin, S., Aly, R.,Lande, T., Levin, I., Eizenberg, H. (2014). Using genetically modified tomato crop plants with purple leaves for absolute weed/crop classification. Pest Manag. Sci. 70:1059-1065.

Hutton, S.F., Scott , J.W., Shekasteband,  R., Levin, I., Lapidot, M. (2015). Combinations of Ty resistance genes generally provide more effective control against begomoviruses than do single genes. Acta Hort. 1069:59-64.

Reuveni, M., Debbi, A., Kutsher, Y., Zemach, H., Belausov, E., Gelbart, D., Levin I., and Lapidot, M. (2015). Tomato yellow leaf curl virus effects on chloroplast biogenesis and cellular structure. Physiol. and Mol. Plant Pathol. 92: 51-58.

Lapidot, M., Karniel, U., Gelbart, D., Fogel, D., Evenor, D., Kutsher, Y., Makhbash, Z., Nahon, S., Shlomo, H., Chen, L., Reuveni, M., and Levin, I. (2015) A novel route controlling begomovirus resistance by the messenger RNA surveillance factor Pelota. Plos Genet., 11(10):e1005538. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1005538.

Luria, N., Smith, E., Reingold, V., Bekelman, I., Lapidot, M., Levin, I., Elad, N., Tam, Y., Sela, N., Abu-Ras, A., Ezra, N., Haberman, A., Yitzhak, L., Lachman, O., Dombrovsky, A. (2017) A new Israeli tobamovirus isolate infects tomato plants harboring Tm-22 resistance genes. PLoS One., 20;12(1):e0170429. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0170429.

Lapidot, M., Levin, I. (2017). Genetic resistance to viruses in tomato. In Achieving sustainable cultivation of tomatoes (Autar Mattoo and Avtar Handa, Eds.), Burleigh Dodds Science Publishing.

Patent applications and cultivars

  • A molecular marker for the gene determining the fructose to glucose ratio in the mature tomato fruit.
  • Controlling starch synthesis.
  • A molecular marker based on the FRK2 (Fructokinase 2) gene.
  • An isolated nucleotide sequence responsible for the tomato dark green (dg) mutation and uses thereof.
  • The tomato homolog of the gene encoding UV DAMAGED DNA BINDING Protein 1 (DDB1) is the gene that causes the high pigment-1 mutant phenotype.
  • High lycopene tomato varieties and uses thereof.
  • Means and methods of producing fruits with high levels of anthocyanine and flavonols.                                                                                                                                             
  • Isolated nucleotide sequence responsible for resistance to Tomato yellow leaf curl virus and uses thereof 

Lycogold (Registered), lycopene rich tomato cultivar used for commercial extraction of lycopene. (1999). (With Prof. R. Frankel and Dr. D. Lapushner).

Lycorich (Registered), lycopene rich tomato cultivar used for commercial extraction of lycopene. (1999). (With Prof. R. Frankel and Dr. D. Lapushner).

Lycpride (Registered), lycopene rich tomato cultivar used for commercial extraction of lycopene. (2002). (With Prof. R. Frankel, Dr. D. Lapushner, Z. Nave, N. Gilboa, E. Shlomo and O. Brosh).

3502, 3512, 3513 and 3518 (not registered yet)- lycopene rich tomato cultivar used for commercial extraction of lycopene. (2002). (With "Hazera Genetics", Prof. R. Frankel, Dr. D. Lapushner and N. Gilboa).


Current lab members

Lea Chen (Lab technician)

Avner Zinger (M.Sc. student)

Past lab Members

Nehama Gilboa (Lab technician)

Orit Amir (Lab technician)

Sahadia Nahon (Field technician)

Aharon Ballalo (Field technician)

Haviva Shlomo (Technician)

The late Dr. Menachem Keller (Post Doc.)

Dr. Jacob Van Dam (Ph.D. student)

Dr. Igor Kolotilin (Ph.D. student)

Dr. Raviv Azari (Ph.D. student)

Dr. Noga lavi (Ph.D. student)

Felix Cincarevsky (M.Sc. student)

Edna Fogelman (M.Sc. student)

Pnina Frankel (M.Sc. student)

Sophi Tanny (M.Sc. student)

Michal Lieberman (M.Sc. student)

Maya Sapir (M.Sc. student)

Nili Caspi (M.Sc. student)

Shery Lev (M.Sc. student)

Ilana Anbinder (M.Sc. student)

Gali Shrieber (M.Sc. student)

Amir Butbool (M.Sc. student)

Uri Karniel (M.Sc. student)

Doron Fogel (M.Sc. student)

Shay Tsaidi (M.Sc. student)

Luis Antonio Riofrio (Visiting scholar from Ecuador)

Dr. Ismail Oguz (Research scholar from Turkey)

Prof. Raoul J. Bino (Short sabbatical from Wageningen, the Netherlands)

Shweta (visiting scholar from India)

Ashish Kumar (Post Doc from India)



This is Uval:  resulting from a cross between Nitzan (my daughter) and Nir



MERC team

 סיור לרמת נגב עם שותפים למחקר


Updated on: 24/07/17 13:25
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