Good News Israel Archive from the week of November 20, 2016: Israel’s BiolineRX in conjunction with Ben Gurion University, Hadassah Medical Center and Novartis has developed a novel treatment that can restore liver function in patients with liver disease and injury; In a historic first, two female lawyers were appointed as Israel’s first Ethiopian judges, and much more.
ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
Regenerating liver function
Israel’s BiolineRX in conjunction with Ben Gurion University, Hadassah Medical Center and Novartis has developed a novel treatment BL-1220 that can restore liver function in patients with liver disease and injury.
Success in trials of tardive dyskinesia treatment
I highlighted (Dec 2015) Teva’s SD-809 (deutetrabenazine) treatment for tardive dyskinesia. The disease causes uncontrollable movements in around 500,000 US patients. The second Phase III trial of the treatment produced statistically significant results.
New treatment for Alzheimer’s
Israel’s Neurim is conducting a Phase 2 trial of its Piromelatine treatment, for Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The 26-week trial will compare once-daily oral doses of Piromelatine to placebo in approximately 500 patients diagnosed with mild AD.
Diagnoses using molecular biomarkers
Israel’s ImmunArray is developing blood-based tests that support the diagnosis and management of complex acute and chronic immune and neurodegenerative diseases, including brain injury. It has just received a major investment from America’s Quanterix Corporation.
Filling a gap in dental services
Israel’s CephX provides dental and orthodontic practitioners with Cephalometric X-Ray analyses, image archiving and patient record management – all securely maintained on the cloud (rather in the dental surgery).
Pomegranate oil to protect the brain
Israel’s Granalix has launched GranaGard – a food supplement that prevented neurodegeneration diseases in clinical tests. GranaGard, is a submicron (nanodrops) Pomegranate Seed Oil emulsion with 80% Punicic acid – one of the strongest natural antioxidants.
Israeli Telehealth device gets FDA approval
Tytocare’s handheld diagnostic device has been enhanced and Tytocare has received US FDA clearance for its digital stethoscope that performs enhanced remote diagnosis of a patient without the physician being present.
GE’s new CT-scanner is a Revolution
GE’s Haifa engineering team was a major player in developing the Revolution CT (Computed Tomography) scanner. It exposes patients to only 20% of the radiation of previous models and the scan takes less than a second. The first Israeli Revolution has been installed at Sheba Medical Center, near Tel Aviv.
Israel’s Inovytec develops solutions for out-of-hospital medical emergencies, to increase patient survivability. These include the world’s first and only automated oxygen defibrillator, a safe airway management collar and an ultralight ventilator. It has just received funds from Germany’s Rohn Innovations.
IDF field hospitals are the best in the world
Israel is the first country to earn the United Nations’ World Health Organization’s highest ranking for its IDF field hospital unit. It received “Type 3” designation, along with some additional “specialized care” recognitions, which technically made it a “Type 3 plus”.
More power to your hearing
I reported previously (May 29) on the rechargeable hearing aid technology from Israel’s Humavox. Now leading hearing technology firm Starkey will integrate Humavox’s wireless charging into Starkey’s advanced hearing devices. Simply put the hearing aid in its box to recharge it.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
Israel’s first female Ethiopian judges
In a historic first, two female lawyers were appointed as Israel’s first Ethiopian judges, as the Judicial Nominating Committee named Adenko Sebhat-Haimovich to the magistrates’ court, and Esther Tapeta Gardi to the traffic court. Both were appointed on their legal merits.
Special school gets new playground
Thanks to the Friends of JNF Canada, the kids at Jerusalem’s Ilanot school for children with physical and cognitive disabilities now enjoy playing with new special playground equipment. (The second video shows how the original looked)
Topol helps sick children
I reported previously (Jun 2012) on the Galilee village supported by actor Chaim Topol that provides respite for sick children. Here is a more detailed feature about Topol and his charity work.
Jewish-Druze military academy
60 cadets are studying at the first-of-its-kind joint Jewish-Druze military academy, which opened in the northern Druze town of Daliyat al-Karmel, near Haifa. (Druze) Minister Ayoob Kara said both communities “… sanctify the values of life, democracy, freedom of expression, religion and movement and this is what our sons are fighting for …”
Rambam hospital treats all
This video about Haifa’s Rambam Medical Center came out last year. But I think it is very important to publicize that Rambam treats Palestinian Arabs from Jenin and Gaza the same as its Israeli Jewish and Arab patients.
Telling the world about Israel in the world
Untold news has been busy publicizing Israeli achievements. Over 4 million have been exposed to its “Israel Is On It” media campaign in the New York Times. Its latest article is on Buzzfeed, where millions of millennials go online to get their news.
Further to the article (Apr 3) here is another feature about the non-profit organization Innovation:Africa, established by Sivan Ya’ari.
US delegation sees Israeli emergency response
A delegation led by the chief of the U.S. National Guard Bureau visited Israel to learn new techniques in emergency response. Hosted by Israel’s Homefront Command, participants watched a large-scale exercise in northern Israel and was briefed on the latest Israeli technology.
UN passes Israeli-sponsored resolution
The United Nations has approved an Israeli-sponsored resolution “Entrepreneurship for Sustainable Development,” by 123 votes to 30 (mostly Arab countries). The resolution focuses on key ways to help remove the barriers facing entrepreneurs and unleash the talent that is innate in all societies.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
See what you hear
Israel’s Augury that uses vibration and ultrasound to detect faults in critical machinery. Now, another Israeli startup 3DSignals has developed an ultrasonic acoustic sensor which predicts electro-mechanical failure long before it causes production downtime.
Intel inaugurates chip production line
Intel has inaugurated its $6 billion next-generation chip production line at its Kiryat Gat facility in Israel. At the event, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said of Intel, “You are producing a new future. Using technology, you amplify Israel’s power. Israel is a global technological superpower.”
More security for automobiles
Israeli startups Arilou and Argus Cybersecurity prevent remote electronic carjacking. Now, there is a new kid on the block – Israel’s Karamba, which secures vehicles by locking down their Electronic Control Units (ECUs).
Generating renewable energy technology
The 7th Eilat-Eilot Renewable and Clean Energy Conference (Nov 27 – 29) brings together industry, government and investors to review new technologies that will advance the global transition to renewable energy. The video highlights the last conference in 2014.
Supermoon over Jerusalem
The full moon came to its closest point (221,524 miles) to the Earth since 1948 (Israel’s Independence), creating what NASA described as ‘an extra-supermoon.’ Unfortunately, a cloudy sky spoiled the visual effect. The next extra-supermoon will be in 2035.
CES award for sleep inducer
A sensor and smartphone app from Israel’s 2breath helps users fall asleep and tracks their sleeping patterns. 2breath has just won the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) Innovation award in Las Vegas, in the fitness, sports and biotech product category.
Promoting nanotech development with Germany
Israel and Germany have set up a new three-year, 30 million Euros plan to promote joint nanotechnology initiatives and are calling on companies and entities in both countries to submit proposals for funding for projects in this field.
IDCBeyond is launched
A new 1-year program IDCBeyond from the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) in Herzliya has begun, with 36 students enrolled. They will discuss global challenges and then move onto venture creation, culminating in the setting up of new startups.
Printing parts for Airbus
Israel’s Stratasys announced that Airbus has standardized on its ULTEM 9085 3D printing material for the production of flight parts for its A350 XWB aircraft.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
Israel gets an all-round A Plus
Fitch Ratings has upgraded Israel’s Long-Term Foreign-and Local-Currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) to “A+” from “A”. It reflects the fact that Israel’s external balance sheet has continued to strengthen. All three ratings agencies now give Israel an A+ (Fitch, Moody’s and S&P)
2017 natural gas sales worth $1.5 billion
The Bank of Israel is to purchase $1.5 billion of foreign currency in 2017 to offset projected sales of Israel’s natural gas windfall. The purchases are intended to stop the Israeli Shekel from appreciating too much.
More Israelis use public transport
The number of passengers on public transportation in Israel rose 7.2% in the first eight months of 2016. Bus usage was up 6.5% whilst railway use increased by 15.2%. A one percent rise in public transportation use saves the Israeli economy NIS 400 million per year.
Pango parks up in America
Israeli parking payment startup Pango has sold its American operations to US company Parking By Phone. Pango’s technology and app will now be deployed across the US and Latin America.
Jerusalem gets down to business
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat and Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz have laid the cornerstone for the new $364 million, 173-acre Jerusalem Gateway business park. It will include nine 36-floor skyscrapers, business centers, hotels, and 70,000 square meters of leisure and cultural spaces.
Sao Paulo finds Waze
Although Google now owns traffic and navigation app Waze, it is still an Israeli-run company. Sao Paulo, Brazil (South America’s largest city) is to use Waze to help manage the heavy traffic tackled by nearly 20 million people every day.
9 Israeli companies in KPMG fintech top 100
Nine Israeli companies were among KPMG’s 100 most promising fintech companies for 2016. They are Payoneer, Ourcrowd, Tipranks, Lemonade, Innovative Assessments, Paykey, Zooz, Blackswan and DMway
Predicting if a startup will succeed or fail
Israeli startup Zirra uses Artificial Intelligence and machine learning to give investors increased chances of finding a winner. It uses public domain information such as valuation, competition, risk and success factors, employees, founders and insights from human experts.
Jezreel Valley railway is running
The revived Jezreel Valley railway is now fully operational, taking 50 minutes from Haifa to Beit She’an. Many travelers remember using the original line, until it was closed 65 years ago.
$100 million fund to invest in Israeli healthcare startups
Marius Nacht, co-founder of Israeli computer security firm Check Point, has raised $100 million for a new fund to invest in Israeli healthcare startups. He is hoping for the emergence of another Teva or the equivalent of a Check Point in healthcare.
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT
Prehistoric stone circle in Golan
A series of concentric stone circles over 150 meters wide in the Golan Heights is up to 5000 years old. Rujm el-Hiri in Arabic, means the “stone heap of the wild cat”. In Hebrew, Gilgal Refaim means “wheel of giants” and refers to an ancient race of giants mentioned in the Bible.
Top chefs visit Tel Aviv
The international culinary festival “Round Tables by American Express” sent the top chefs from 13 of the most acclaimed restaurants in the world to Tel Aviv for an entire week, where they took over the kitchens.
Jewish-Yemeni culture comes alive
Ravid Kahalani of popular Israeli band Yemen Blues grew up in Israel surrounded by Jewish-Yemeni culture. He sings in Yemeni-Arabic and dreams of performing in Yemen one day.
Aerosmith’s farewell tour begins in Tel Aviv
After some 45 years together and countless hits, Aerosmith, one of rock’s greatest bands, will start their European farewell tour in Tel Aviv. The cutely named Aero-Vederci Baby! tour, will kick off in Tel Aviv’s HaYarkon Park on May 17, 2017.
Tel Aviv Jazz Festival
The annual Tel Aviv Jazz Festival (Nov 25-27) is one of the city’s premiere events, attracting some of the top established and up-and-coming talent from both the local and international jazz scene.
Robert Kraft donates $6 million for Jerusalem sports campus
Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots and a noted Jewish philanthropist, has donated $6 million to create the Kraft Family Sports Campus in Jerusalem. Mayor Barkat said the gift “helps celebrate the 50th anniversary of Jerusalem’s reunification”.
Bychenko skates to Grand Prix bronze
Israeli figure skater Alexei Bychenko won his first career medal at a Grand Prix event by taking third place at the Rostelecom Cup in Moscow. Bychenko became the first Israeli to claim a medal at the European Figure Skating Championships in January.
THE JEWISH STATE
Thousands on Masa Israel programs
12,000 18-30-year-olds are in Israel to participate in long-term Masa (journey) Israel programs, including gap years, study abroad, internships, teaching English to young students, and other post-college initiatives. Many attended a celebratory welcome event in Jerusalem.
Our united tribe
Israel’s immigrant absorption minister, Sofa Landver, writes on Nov 8 – Israel’s first Aliya Day – the new national holiday to celebrate those who have moved from the Lands of Dispersion, to live in the Startup Nation where Aliya is the ultimate personal startup.
Nov 20 is Global Day of Jewish Learning
Israeli Rabbi Adin Steinsalz established the Global Day of Jewish Learning in 2010 to mark the completion of his 45-year project to produce his commentary on the Talmud. This year, on Nov 20, he invites everyone to join in on-line.
Birthright-style tour for business people
AlmaLinks, a group focused on promoting ties between the global Jewish business community and Israel, has started sponsoring its own Birthright-style trip, bringing business executives to Israel to meet their local counterparts. Its first Diaspora delegation visited Israel in September.
Click here for the latest Good News from Israel.