Staff Profile: Alumit Ishai

Alumit Ishai, Ph.D.
Alumit Ishai, Ph.D.

Scientific Review Officer

Division of Extramural Activities
Scientific Review Branch

National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

National Institutes of Health

Email Alumit Ishai


Alumit Ishai is a scientific review officer in the Scientific Review Branch within NCATS’ Division of Extramural Activities. She oversees Special Emphasis Panel review meetings to evaluate the scientific merit of grant applications received in response to various funding opportunities supported by NCATS programs and initiatives, including rare diseases, A Specialized Platform for Innovative Research Exploration (ASPIRE) and the Helping to End Addiction Long-term® Initiative, or NIH HEAL Initiative®.

Prior to joining NCATS in 2020, Ishai was a research fellow at the Laboratory of Brain and Cognition at the National Institute of Mental Health, a tenured professor at the University of Zurich in Switzerland, a program director at the National Science Foundation and an adjunct professor at Georgetown University.

Research Topics

Ishai’s scientific research has involved using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and other brain imaging techniques to investigate the neural correlates of perception, memory and age-dependent changes in the human brain. Her research has been published in high-impact, peer-reviewed scientific journals and is frequently cited. She was a member of the annual meeting program committees of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping and the Cognitive Neuroscience Society (CNS) and has served on the editorial boards of several leading scientific journals. In recognition of her scientific excellence, Ishai has received several awards, including the CNS 2006 Young Investigator Award. In 2008, the Swiss National Science Foundation selected Ishai as one of the top 25 scientists in Switzerland, and the Swiss national television produced a movie about her work titled “Looking into The Brain.”

Ishai earned her doctorate in neurobiology from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel.

Selected Publications

  1. Common Mechanisms of Visual Imagery and Perception
  2. Distributed Representation of Objects in the Human Ventral Visual Pathway
  3. Distributed Neural Systems for the Generation of Visual Images
  4. Face Perception Is Modulated by Sexual Preference
  5. Effective Connectivity Within the Distributed Cortical Network for Face Perception