In the 18th Jan 2015 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:
· Two Israeli biotechs are at the forefront of a new method for destroying cancer cells.
· A 16-year-old Israeli girl has just started medical School.
· 65% of Israel’s Arabs say they are proud to be Israeli.
· An Israeli T-shirt monitors your heart.
· Drivers can see five times further with an Israeli night vision system.
· Israel has discovered another massive natural gas field.
· Two Israelis, who escaped Nazi Germany, celebrate the birth of their 100th great-grandchild.
Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.
ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
Trial of new cancer antibody approved. Israel’s cCAM has received US FDA approval to commence trials of its CM-24 monoclonal antibody (mAb) for the treatment of various types of cancers. CM-24 targets CEACAM1, a novel immune checkpoint protein expressed on a variety of cancer cells.
Israel & USA team up to fight cancer. Israeli biotech Compugen has enlisted John Hopkins University to help assess Compugen’s cancer immunotherapy candidates. These new treatments aim to counter the ability of tumors to highjack “immune checkpoints”, thereby blocking the immune system’s ability to destroy the tumor.
Effective for detecting lingering cancer cells. (Thanks to Michelle) New York City’s NYU Langone Medical Center has praised MarginProbe from Israel’s Dune Medical, used by surgeons to identify and help them remove cancer cells on the margins of removed tumors. MarginProbe avoids the need for follow-up surgery.
90% response to cancer vaccine. (Thanks to NoCamels.com) Julian Levy, CFO of Israel’s Vaxil Biotherapeutics speaks to NoCamels about Vaxil’s cancer vaccine, ImMucin, that boosts the immune system and prevents cancer returning. ImMucin triggers a response in about 90 percent of all types of cancer.
US approve 360-degree colonoscope. (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s GI View has just received US FDA approval for its Aer-O-Scope colonoscope, for advanced detection of polyps that frequently develop into colon cancer. GI View is expected to start selling the product in the U.S. in early 2016.
Spine surgery system wins two awards. (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s NLT-Spine has won a 2014 Spine Technology Award from US Magazine Orthopedics This Week, for its ARC Pedicle Screw System. The company also was included (for the second year running) in the list of Red Herring Global 100 winners.
Med school at 16. If Israelis are exceptional people, then Maya Fishman is amazing. Only 16-years old, she has already started med school at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She is on course to become the youngest doctor in the history of the State of Israel.
What lurks in your lungs? (Thanks to Israel21c) Professor Elizabeth Fireman of Tel Aviv’s Sourasky Medical Center has developed a highly accurate bio-monitoring technique to detect dangerous particles inhaled by firefighters, factory workers, dental technicians and kids with asthma.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
Kids can explore the world in 80 words. (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Tel Aviv’s Wiki-Kids has launched Wikids – apps with friendly text, images and sound, to help children discover the world independently. Each entry has around 80 words, with no adverts or links – all certified by the kidSAFE Seal Program and Momswithapps.
Jerusalem opens center to empower new mothers. The Jerusalem Municipality is opening a community center to address the ongoing needs of women during and after pregnancy. It will offer career counseling to assist mothers on maternity leave to successfully renter the workforce.
Lalli the lamb gets a new chance of life. Lalli the lamb was born with deformed legs and unable to walk. Thanks to Israeli ingenuity and physiotherapy, she is getting along just fine. (Video has English subtitles)
Arabs proud to be Israeli. (Thanks to Evelyn Gordon) In a recent survey, 65 percent of Arab citizens said they were either “quite” or “very” proud to be Israeli in 2014, up from 50 percent the previous year. The majority had faith in the Supreme Court, Israeli police and in the IDF.
Israel’s top rescue missions – Leadership and saving lives. An inspirational presentation by Brigadier General Professor Yitshak Kreiss describing the medical rescue missions undertaken by Israel’s army in recent years. Leadership, medicine and the personal dilemmas faced when dealing with humanitarian emergencies.
Journey to the Start-up Nation. During January, students from seven US Jewish day schools will participate in the first “CIJE-Tech: Journey to the Start-Up Nation” STEM Education Israel Trip. It will prepare students to innovate, problem solve and leverage their skills in 21st century Science, Tech, Engineering and Math.
Chicago reaches out to Israel for water’s sake. The University of Chicago has sought out Israel’s Ben-Gurion University to help tackle water scarcity. In laboratories in Chicago and the Israeli desert, scientists are crafting radical new approaches that may one day rejuvenate the world’s water-starved regions.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Next generation of flash storage – simply faster. (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s Kaminario has set new performance records for flash storage. It also boasts reliability, scalability and cost/performance figures that its competitors can only dream of. Kaminario easily raised $53million in funds to fuel global expansion.
Scottish Water likes Israeli recycling technology. Israel’s Applied CleanTech has successfully completed its first UK pilot project of its new recycling technology for wastewater at Scottish Water. The system produces a useful material called Recyllose from sewage while reducing maintenance and power costs.
A shirt that monitors your heart. Israeli startup HealthWatch Technologies has developed a washable T-shirt that can read a patient’s heart rate, blood pressure, cardiac irregularities, and other vital signs that could be the key to preventing heart attacks. All data can be transmitted instantly to your cardiologist, as speed is essential.
Smart low-energy hotels. Israeli startup Phoebus Energy is to install smart systems in the Fattal chain’s nine Israeli hotels. The systems will cut the chain’s heating and air-conditioning costs by 50-75%, amounting to NIS 40 million over the coming decade. The lower energy consumption will also benefit the environment.
Bell Labs (Israel) has big plans. The opening of Bell Labs in Israel provides an avenue for Israeli PhD graduates to pursue research careers in Israel. Director of the new branch, Danny Raz, was until recently a professor in the Department of Computer Science at Israel’s Technion.
Would a solar panel work for you? It can cost up to $4,000 for a survey to check whether a solar panel on your roof could generate sufficient solar energy to justify installation. Israel’s SolView uses Google Earth and its automated rooftop scanning technology to do that instantly.
Safer night driving. (Thanks to Israel21c) Israeli startup BrightWay Vision has developed “BrightEye” – a unique night-vision system that gives drivers a clear, panoramic view of the road. The system uses active-gated imaging to project images up to 250 meters ahead (5 times further than headlights) onto the driver’s screen.
Another “doggy” app. Following on the heels of “Dogiz”, “Oggii”, “Pawly”, “Swifto”, “KelevLand” and “DogTV”, we now have “Wooof” – a made-in-Israel app, providing a platform for dog owners to get together online, “trading” photos, recording dog walking routes and even alerting when a dog inspector is in the area.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
Israel discovers another major gas field. A new huge natural gas field has been discovered about 150 km off Israel’s coast. Seismic analysis suggests that the Royee field contains an estimated 3.2 trillion cubic feet of gas, making it Israel’s third largest after Leviathan and Tamar.
Turning viewers into customers. (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Israel’s Viewbix turns a company’s youtube or vimeo videos into marketing applications. It integrates interactive features such as action buttons and email forms into the video itself, allowing potential customers to communicate directly. Viewbix has just raised $3million.
AOL invests in Technion research. AOL, the American Internet and media giant, will be investing $5million in a video research project at the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute. AOL’s R&D center in Israel specializes in developing innovation in the field of online video.
A healthy acquisition. Israel’s Frutarom Industries has bought Slovenia’s Vitiva for around $10million. Vitiva’s antioxidants, natural colors and botanical extracts will enhance Frutarom’s food, health and cosmetic business. It also brings in a cutting-edge plant, skilled personnel and impressive R&D capabilities.
Another $8.3million for 11 projects. The Israel-US Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation has approved $8.3 million in new funding for 11 projects involving US and Israeli companies. The Israeli firms include BrainsGate, MobileOCT, ThetaRay, Orgenesis and Softwheel (from previous newsletters).
Kodak wants to buy Israeli startups. Jeff Clarke, the new CEO of venerable camera-maker Kodak, is in Israel looking to acquire tech startups that can help rebuild his company as a leader in digital printing.
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT
Hebrew Bibles reunited after 350 years. When filmmaker Micha Shagrir donated a 1667 Hebrew Bible to Haifa University, staff discovered a Bible written by the same person already on the library’s shelves. An Egyptian Armenian gave Shagrir his Bible in gratitude for his film about the Armenian genocide.
Israeli short film ‘Aya’ gets Oscar nomination. The 40-minute Israeli film “Aya” has been included in the final list of nominations for an Oscar in the category of “Best Live Action Short”. Aya follows the encounter between an Israeli woman driver and a Scandinavian musician who gets into the wrong car at the airport.
English soccer club appoints Israeli coach. (Thanks to Hazel) English Championship Soccer League side Charlton Athletic has appointed Israeli Guy Luzon as their new head coach. Luzon was previously coach at top Belgian soccer club Standard Liege.
THE JEWISH STATE
Archeology points to King David. Archeologists have discovered clay seals in Israel dating from the 10th century BCE – the biblical dating of the kingdoms of David and Solomon. The find is evidence of a national government at a time when many scholars previously believed that there were only backwater chieftains.
“This is your land”. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Taglit-Birthright Israel’s 15th anniversary event said to the youngsters, “In Israel, every Jew can say, ‘I am a Jew, Je suis Juif,’ out loud and proudly, without fear. Come to Israel. Come visit Israel. Come stay in Israel. Come make aliyah to Israel. This is your land.”
100 great-grandchildren. Israelis Michael (92) and Marion (90) Mittwoch have just celebrated the birth of a new great-grandchild – their 100th. After escaping Nazi Germany, the Mittwochs immigrated to Israel where they became the first couple to be married at Kibbutz Lavi. All children and grandchildren live in Israel.
Ukrainian refugees land in Israel. Two hundred and twenty-six immigrants, 76 of which are children, landed in Israel on a special flight from Ukraine. They included dozens of families of refugees from eastern Ukraine who were made destitute as a result of the ongoing fighting, and were forced to leave their homes.
A Zionist dream come true. Evelyn Gordon writes about some of the reasons that European Jews, despite all doors being open to them, are now choosing Israel to be their future home.
“They will all come to Jerusalem”. Select full screen view to see this amazing video tour of the highway to Jerusalem. It shows the new road construction in context with the Biblical sites mentioned along the way.