Israel’s Good News This Week

Levinski spice marketDried fruit at the Levinski spice market stands                        In the 21st Oct edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:          How Israel’s Weizmann institute is working to eradicate breast cancer.  An Arab couple brought their injured son to a Jewish village in Samaria where paramedics saved his life.  An Israeli policewoman was elected vice-president of the International Police Association.Official – Israel is the second most important producer of clean technology in the world. Great new video about Israeli hi-tech, from IATA – Israel Advanced Technology Industries. Israel is starting mass-production of its home-designed cardboard bicycle  A great opportunity to have free tours of some of Jerusalem’s unique buildings.


As  always we want to thank “Good News from Israel” Blog

Fighting breast cancer at Weizmann.  October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Here are some of the many examples of the successful developments from Israel’s Weizmann Institute and current research that could potentially eradicate breast cancer in the future.
Studying brain function in a petri dish.  Ya’ara Saad, a PhD student at Tel Aviv University, has been growing neuron networks from fruit flies in the laboratory.  By measuring electrical activity and synapse development, she is building a platform for testing potential treatments for neuro-degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
Computer exercises for Alzheimer’s sufferers.  In Harvard’s clinical trial, the NeuroAD system from Israel’s Neuronix not only stopped patients’ symptoms from deteriorating, in some cases it actually improved patients’ cognitive performance to a greater extent than what is currently available with approved medications.
How SACH repair congenital heart defects.  I’ve reported many of the successful operations performed at Israel’s Save A Child’s Heart organisation on Palestinian Arabs and African children.  Here, for the medical community, is an example of the kind of operation that surgeons perform at Wolfson Medical Centre in Holon.
Getting back in shape.  Israel’s NLT Spine develops products for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery (MISS) and has received clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its eSPIN powered discectomy system.  It is for patients with degenerative disc disease (DDD) and already in use in Europe.
A VIP medical assistant.  United Hatzalah’s motorcycle paramedics carried a very unusual person recently – UK Ambassador Matthew Gould.  “I wanted to see for myself the work the volunteers of United Hatzalah are doing,” said Gould. “Thanks to their ambucycles, they move fast, and their speed saves lives.”
“Settlers” save electrocuted Arab boy.  A six-year-old Palestinian Arab who was electrocuted was treated by Jews from the Samarian village of Neve Tzuf after his parents brought him in.  Baruch Ram said, “We are fulfilling our duty and helping a person in distress…this is not the first time…we’ve never gotten a ‘thank you’.”
Israeli Arab woman shocks Israel’s critics.  Boshra Khalaila from Deir Hana in the Galilee is working for her Masters degree in Tel Aviv.  In South Africa during its “Israel Apartheid Week”, she astounded interviewers and anti-Israel protesters when she described the freedom and rights of Arabs in Israel.  (A long but good read.)
Top international policewoman.  67 countries were represented at the International Police Association in Eilat last month.  The 450 delegates elected Superintendent Gal Sharon to the position of Vice President.  It is an unprecedented achievement for a woman – and an Israeli.
Drip drip drip.  Israeli scientist Daniel Hillel invented drip irrigation and won the 2012 World Food Prize as reported in June.  Here he is interviewed in the Wall Street Journal.  He talks about the successful implementation of his invention in countries such as Jordan, UAE and now Egypt.
A social network to change the world.  At the Webit conference in Istanbul, Turkey, former tech Chief Executive Isabel Maxwell gave a presentation about Israel Venture Network, a 10-year social entrepreneurship network targeting some of Israel’s deprived and excluded citizens.
The cleanest technology in the world (almost).  The Cleantech Group has ranked Israel as second in its 2012 Global Cleantech Innovation Index.  With six companies in the Global Cleantech 100 list, it even beats the “top” country Denmark, which has only two companies in the top 100.
An air gun to extract oil cleanly.  (Thanks to Israel21c)  Israel’s Flow Industries makes an ‘air gun’ for clearing industrial blockages, and it may also provide a better way to extract shale oil.  Instead of the potentially polluting water or acid used in “fracking”, Flow Industries can use Nitrogen, Oxygen or even compressed air.
Silicom in major design win with computer giant.  Israel’s Silicom said that design win for the SETAC-derivative 1-Gbps and 10-Gbps fiber bypass modules was from the security division of one of the world’s largest server manufacturers.  The company’s SETAC products make servers more modular.
Argentina hosts Israeli technology seminar.  The Argentinean government hosted a seminar in Buenos Aires about innovative technology in Israel.  Israel was described as a role model for South American nation.  Saul Singer, co-author of the best-selling book “Start-Up Nation” was featured at the event.
UK can learn from Israel’s hi-tech.  (Thanks to IATI) While it may be desirable to try to replicate Israel’s success, collaboration is better, says Haim Shani, chairman of UK-Israel’s Technologies Hub, a UK Trade and Investment programme.  Christer Holloman, Technology Writer for Sky News gives some examples.
Video of the month – Made in Israel.  If you just watch one youtube this week, please make it this one.  It is the latest video clip from the organisation IATI – Israel Advanced Technology Industries.  It summarises Israel’s hi-tech successes in two minutes – so don’t blink!
DLD Tel Aviv Festival.  DLD (Digital – Life – Design) is a global conference network on innovation, digital, science and culture that connects business, creative and social leaders, opinion-formers and investors.  October’s five-day festival includes the DLD conference in Old Jaffa and has an excellent program of events.
Weizmann scientist wins US groundwater prize.  The US National Ground Water Association has awarded Professor Brian Berkowitz the 2012 M. King Hubbert Award for major science contributions to the knowledge of groundwater.  Prof Berkowitz is Weizmann Institute’s head of Environmental Sciences and Energy Research.
Israeli cardboard bike to be mass-produced.  Israeli inventor Izhar Gafni said that after much trial and error, his latest prototype has now proven itself and mass production will begin in a few months at Ahituv, a farming village near Hadera.
NIS 160m more for recycling.  The Environmental Protection Ministry will award NIS 160 million to local authorities joining the office’s waste separation “recycling revolution.”  The money will allow local councils to buy collection trucks for separated garbage.
IPhone 5 is selling well – in Gaza.  Despite high prices, Palestinian Arabs in Gaza have been rushing to buy Apple’s new smartphone even before they are available to Israelis.  “There are always some people prepared to pay whatever they must just to have the latest thing,” a Gaza dealer said.  Israelis have to wait until December.
A fruitful investment.  Israel’s Frutarom is to build a new plant in the Lower Galilee for the production of natural products and plant extracts and to serve as an R&D center for the production of taste and health products.  The Israeli government has given the plant approved enterprise status and eligibility for tax benefits.
Surpass Medical goes to the USA.  Israel’s Surpass Medical develops stents to treat brain aneurysms.  US medical device manufacturer Stryker Corporation has just acquired it for $135 million.  Surpass’s key product, the NeuroEndoGraft family of flow diverters, is designed to redirect blood flow away from an aneurysm.
The 5 fastest-growing Israeli start-ups.  (Thanks to IATI)  “The technology economy that has emerged in Israel is one of the most significant happenings in the world today.” Kevin Ducoff of VentureBeat writes about the Israeli companies that are changing the way we use technology to interact and access information.  They include Waze, Codename One, Kaltura, Mobli and StartApp.
Houses From Within.  Oct 25-27 sees a 3-day architectural fest in Jerusalem where visitors will be given free, guided tours of many villas, synagogues, churches, hospitals and private apartments free of charge.
Sewer drain art.  (Thanks to Life in Israel) In Tel Aviv, artists literally brighten up the streets by painting pictures on manhole covers.  It opens up a “hole” new world of art.
Depeche Mode to return.  The concert is expected to form part of their 2013 world tour.  May is the target date, with HaYarkon Park the venue. The UK’s monsters of synth pop last performed here in 2009.
Lord of the Dance 2013.  January will see 15 performances of the exciting Irish tap dancing troupe in Haifa, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.
London to Israel by boat.  I wasn’t sure where to put this article.  In a bid to reduce her carbon footprint, Lianna Etkind from Brixton, London, chose an unconventional summer holiday this year – a voyage to Israel over land and sea.  The voyage aboard a Grimaldi line cargo ship took a week and cost around $520.
Tragedy saves six lives.  Promising teenage athlete Gilad Veturi collapsed and died during sprint practice last week.  He donated nine organs, which were transplanted into six patients waiting for urgent operations.  Gilad’s parents were praised due to their readiness to help others at a time of distress and terrible personal tragedy.
The Jews of Nigeria?  (Thanks to IsraelSeen).  There was a long-told lore that the Igbo people were once Jews. Shmuel (then called Sam) compared Hebrew traditions to Igbo traditions, was astounded. The similarities were so convincing that it sent him off on a journey in the quest to find other Igbo who might be practicing Judaism.
Israelis are also returning.  Among the hundreds of thousands of Jews who immigrated to Israel over the last 2.5 years were 22,470 Israelis previously living abroad.  Most were aged 31 to 39, and included 4,837 academics and researchers, 2,720 engineers, programmers and hi-tech workers plus 681 business managers.
Be’er Sheva gets National Priority status.  The government has declared Be’er Sheva, the capital of the Negev, to be a national priority community. It is investing in Be’er Sheva and in the rapid transportation routes to it, to link it with the centre of the country and also allow it to develop.  
City of David’s Barmitzvah.  Jerusalem’s City of David held its 13th Archaeology conference last month.  The key discovery of year was the 250 cubic meter rock-hewn cistern dating back some 2,700 years to the First Temple period. It included handprints of the plasterers who built the walls of reservoir.



To Top