Zvia Agur

Professor Zvia Agur is an eminent international biomathematician, who has made major contributions to the theory of disease dynamics, chemotherapy and vaccination policies optimization. Prof. Agur is founder of the Institute for Medical BioMathematics (IMBM), has been the president of the Israeli Society of Theoretical and Mathematical Biology, a member of the Board of Directors of the European Society of Mathematical and Theoretical Biology, and an editor of several professional publications. Her innovative research work has won national awards, has been published in a long line of leading scientific journals and is recognized by the academic community worldwide. Prof. Agur holds a Ph.D. from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and the Université Libre in Brussels.


Education and Positions:

1971- B.Sc, Genetics and Microbiology, from the Hebrew University
1973 - M.Sc., Genetics from the Hebrew University
1974 – M,Sc studies in Philosophy of Science from the Hebrew University
1982 - Ph.D., Biomathematics, Université Libre, Belgium
1987—1994 - Senior Scientist, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel
1994—1999 - Associate Professor, Cell Research and Immunology, Tel-Aviv University, Israel
1999 - President, Institute for Medical Biomathematics (IMBM)
2000 - Chairperson & CSO, Optimata Ltd.


Visiting Scientist:

1985 – University of New York at Stoney Brook, USA
1989 - Rockefeller University, New York, USA
1989 - Ecole Normale Superieure, Paris;
1991 - Imperial College of Science, UK;
1992 - 1994 - Oxford University, UK.


Activity On Professional Societies:

1986— Member of the Society of Mathematical Biology (SMB)
1991- Member of the European Society of Mathematics in Biology and Medicine (ESMTB)
1996—1998 - Acting President of the Israeli Society of Theoretical and Mathematical Biology (ISMTB)
1997— 2003 - Board of Directors of the European Society of Mathematical and Theoretical Biology (ESMTB)
1998—2001 - President of the Israeli Society of Theoretical and Mathematical Biology. (ISMTB)


Academic and professional awards:

1974 - Aharon Katzir Prize for Scientific Writing, Israel Academy of Science, Israel
1987 - The Elaine Blond Career Development Chair, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel
1989 - The Juludan Prize for Outstanding Scientific Achievements, Technion — Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa
1987 - Jakubskind-Cymerman Research Prize, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel
2004 - Best Paper Award, 6th International Conference on Cellular Automata for Research and Industry, ACRI.
2015 - finalist for EU Prize for Women Innovators, European Commission.


Editorial Boards:

1996—Associate Editor – Jour. of Biological Systems / World Scientific Singapore. New Jersey. London. Hong Kong.
1997—1998Guest Associate Editor - Jour. Mathematical Bioscience / Elsevier.
1998—Associate Editor - Book Series in Mathematical and Computational Biology. Wiley, UK
2000—2008Associate Editor-Journal of M3AS, Mathematical Methods and Models in the Applied Sciences / World Scientific Singapore. New Jersey. London. Hong Kong.
2006-Mathematical Modelling of Natural Phenomena - Editorial Board Member on Hematopoiesis and blood diseases
2010-Computational and Mathematical Methods in Medicine - Editorial Board Member
2012-Current Angiogenesis - Editorial Board Member


Recent selected publications:

  1. Agur Z, Halevi-Tobias K, Kogan Y & Shlagman O. Employing dynamical computational models for personalizing cancer immunotherapy. Expert Opin Biol Ther., 26, 2016, pp 1-13.

  2. Elishmereni M, Kheifetz Y, Shukrun I, Bevan GH, Nandy D, McKenzie KM, Kohli M, Agur Z. Prediction of individual response to androgen deprivation therapy in hormone sensitive prostate cancer stage patients by integrating a mathematical mechanistic model of tumor progression with clinical patient characteristics. Prostate, 76(1), 2016, pp 48-57.

  3. Kheifetz Y, Elishmereni M and Agur. Complex pattern of Interleukin-11-induced inflammation revealed by mathematical modeling of C-Reactive Protein dynamics. J Pharmacokinet Pharmacodyn., 41(5), 2014, pp 479-91.

  4. Agur Z, Elishmereni M & Kheifetz Y. Personalizing oncology treatments in solid cancer diseases by predicting drug efficacy, side-effects, and improved therapy: mathematics, statistics and their integration. Syst Biol Med., 6(3), 2014, pp 239-53.

  5. Agur Z. The resonance phenomenon in population persistence: Can the same theory guide both national security policies and personalized medicine? Croat Med J., 55(2), 2014, pp 93-102.

  6. Kogan Y, Agur Z, Elishmereni M. A mathematical model for the immunotherapeutic control of the Th1/Th2 imbalance in melanoma. Discrete and Continuous Dynamics - Series B., 18(4), 2013, pp 1017-1030.

  7. Kogan Y, Halevi-Tobias K, Elishmereni M, Vuk Pavlovic, S, Agur Z. Reconsidering the Paradigm of Cancer Immunotherapy by Computationally Aided Real-Time Personalization. Cancer Res., 72(9), 2012, pp 2218-2227.

  8. Agur, Z. and Vuk Pavlovic, S. Mathematical Modeling in Immunotherapy of Cancer: Personalizing Clinical Trials. Molecular Therapy, 20(1), 2012: 1-2.

  9. Vainstein, V., Kirnasovsky, O. U., Kogan, Y., Agur, Z. Strategies for cancer stem cell elimination: Insights from mathematical modeling, in press.

  10. Hochman, G. and Agur, Z. Deciphering fate decision in normal and cancer stem cells - Mathematical models and their experimental verification. In Mathematical Methods and Models in Biomedicine, Ledjewicz, Schaettler, Friedman, eds, 2012.

  11. Agur, Z., Kirnasovsky, O.U., Tencer, L., Wasserman, G., Harrison, H., Lamb, R. and Clarke, R.B. Use of Dickkopf1 protein for diverting proliferating breast cancer stem cells to differentiation, as predicted mathematically and validated in vitro. PLoS one 2011 6(9) e24225.

  12. Jager, E., van der Velden, V., te Marvelde, J., Roland, G., Walter, B., Agur, Z., Vainstein, V. Targeted drug delivery by gemtuzumab ozogamicin: mechanism-based pharmacokinetic model for treatment strategy improvement and prediction of individual responses. PloS one September 2011, 6(9), e24265.

  13. Elishmereni, M., Kheifetz, Y., Søndergaard, H., Overgaard, R.V., Agur, Z. An Integrated Disease/Pharmacokinetic/Pharmacodynamic Model Suggests Improved Interleukin-21 Regimens Validated Prospectively for Mouse Solid Cancers. PLoS Comput Biol. 2011 Sep;7(9):e1002206. Epub 2011 Sep 29.

  14. Kronik N., Kogan Y., Elishmereni M., Halevi-Tobias K., Vuk Pavlović S., Agur Z. Predicting Effect of Prostate Cancer Immunotherapy by Personalized Mathematical Models. PLoS one, 2011; 6(9):e24225. Epub 2011 Sep 6.

  15. Agur,Z. From the Evolution of Toxin Resistance to Virtual Clinical Trials – the Role of Mathematical Models in Oncology, Future Oncol. 2010 Jun; 6(6):917-27.

  16. Kogan Y., Forys U., Shukron O., Kronik N., Agur Z. Cellular immunotherapy for high grade Gliomas: mathematical analysis deriving efficacious infusion rates based on patient requirements. SIAM J. Appl. Math. 70(6), 2010, pp. 1953-1976

  17. Agur, Z., Kogan, Y., Levi, L., Harrison, H., Lamb, R., Kirnasovsky, O. U., Clarke, R. B. Disruption of a quorum sensing mechanism may trigger somatic evolution of cancer: a simple discrete model and its preliminary in vitro verification in mammary cancer stem cells. Biol Direct 2010, 5:20.

  18. Agur, Z. Bloch, N., Gorelik, B., Kleiman, M., Kogan Y., Sagi, Y., Sidransky, D., Ronen, Y. Developing oncology drugs using virtual patients of vascular tumor diseases. In "Systems biology in Drug Discovery and Development"; Ed. Daniel L. Young and Seth Michelson; Series: Technologies for the Pharmaceutical Industry; Series Editor: Dr. Sean Ekins; John Wiley & Sons, 2009.

  19. Gorelik, B., Ziv, I., Shohat, R., Wick, M., Webb, C., Hankins, D., Sidransky, D., Agur, Z. Efficacy of once weekly docetaxel combined with bevacizumab for patients with intense angiogenesis: validation of a new theranostic method in mesenchymal chondrosarcoma xenografs. Cancer Research, 68: (21) November, 1 2008, PP. 9033-40.

  20. Kirnasovsky, O.U., Kogan, Y, Agur, Z. Analysis of a mathematical model for the molecular mechanism of mammary stem cell fate decision. Mathematical Modelling of Natural Phenomena Vol 3 (7) 2008 pp. 78 - 89.

  21. Kirnasovsky, O.U., Kogan, Y, Agur, Z. Resilience in developing tissues: development of the Agur – Daniel – Ginossar model. Disc. Cont. Dyn. Sys. Volume 10, 2008, Pages: 129 -148.

  22. Zvia A., Elishmereni, M., Kogan, Y., Kheiffetz, Y., Ziv, I., Shoham, M. and Vainstein, V. Mathematical modeling as a new approach for improving the efficacy/toxicity profile of drugs: the thrombocytopenia case study. In Preclinical Development Handbook, Shayne Gad Ed., John Wiley and Sons, USA. 2008, pp 1229-1266.

  23. Kronik, N., Yui Kogan, Y., Vainstein, V., Agur, Z. Improving alloreactive ctl immunotherapy for malignant gliomas using a simulation model of their interactive dynamics. Cancer Immunol Immunother. Mar;57(3):425-439 (2008). Epub 2007 Sep 7.

  24. Cappuccio, A, Elishmereni, M, and Agur, Z. Optimization of Interleukin-21 Immunotherapeutic Strategies. J Theor Biol. 2007 Sep 21; 248(2):259-66. Epub 2007 May 18.

  25. Cappucio, A, Elishmereni, M, Agu,r Z. Cancer immunotherapy by interleukin-21: potential treatment strategies evaluated in a mathematical model. Cancer Research, 66 (14), 2006 ( 7293 - 300).

  26. Agur, Z., Biomathematics in the development of personalized medicine in oncology. Future Oncol., 2 (1) 2006 (pp. 39-42).

  27. Agur, Z., Hassin R., Levy S. Optimizing chemotherapy scheduling using local search heuristics, Operations Research.; 54 (5), 2006 (pp.829-846).

  28. Kheifetz, Y., Kogan Y. and Agur, Z. Long-range predictability in models of cell populations subjected to phase-specific drugs: Growth-rate approximation using properties of positive compact operators. Mathematical Models & Methods in the Applied Sciences. 16 (7), 2006, (pp. 1-18).

  29. Presnov, E.V. nd Agur, Z. The role of time-delays, slow processes and chaos in modulating the cell cycle clock . Mathematical Biosc & Engin, 2(3), 2005 (pp.625-642).

  30. Vainstein, V., Ginosar, Y., Shoham, M., Ranmar, D., Ianovski, A., Agur, Z. The complex effect of granulocyte on human granulopoiesis analyzed by a new physiologically-based mathematical model. Jour Theor Biol. 234(3), 2005 (pp.311-27).

  31. Ribba, B., Marron, K., Alarcon, T., Maini, P., Agur, Z. A mathematical model of doxorubicin treatment efficacy for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: Investigation of the current protocol through theoretical modelling results Bull. Math. Biol., 67, 2005 (pp. 79-99).

  32. Arakelyan, L,, Merbl, Y., Agur, Z. Vessel maturation effects on tumour growth: validation of a computer model in implanted human ovarian carcinoma spheroids Eur. Jour. Cancer, 41, 2005 (pp.159-167).

  33. Agur, Z., Arakelyan, L., Daugulis, P., Ginosar, Y. Hopf point analysis for angiogenesis models. Discrete and Continuous Dynamical Systems – Series B, 4 (1), 2004 (pp. 29-38).

  34. Skomorovski, K., Harpak, H., Ianovski, A., Vardi, M., Visser, TP., Hartong, S., Van Vliet, H., Wagemaker, G., Agur, Z. New TPO treatment schedules of increased safety and efficacy: pre clinical validation of a thrombopoiesis simulation model. Br. Jour. Haematol, 123 (4), 2003 (pp. 683-691).

  35. Arakelyan, L., Vainstain, V., Agur, Z. A computer algorithm describing angiogenesis and vessel maturation and its use for studying the effects of anti-angiogenic and anti-maturation therapy on vascular tumor growth, Angiogenesis, 5 (3), 2002 (pp. 203-14).

  36. Agur Z., Daniel Y., Ginosar Y. The universal properties of stem cells as pinpointed by a simple discrete model. Jour. Math. Biol., 44 (1), 2002 (pp.79-86).