How to make vaccines go further; Israelis develops the IPU; AppsFlyer to hire 300; and much more!
by: Michael Ordman
ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
The masks are off
Israelis are now able to show their faces again indoors after Israel’s Health Ministry lifted the indoor facemask requirement. Some 61% of the population has been fully vaccinated and new Covid cases are minimal. Facemasks are only required for the unvaccinated, quarantined, care homes and air travelers.
Dialing down the immune response
Researchers at Israel’s Technion Institute have identified the specific part of a protein within a T-cell that tells it to attack a virus or pathogen. The discovery of this “regulatory trigger” may lead to medications to prevent cytokine storms in coronavirus patients or to cure autoimmune diseases.
How to make vaccines go further
Researchers at Israel’s Ben Gurion University have evidence that under-30s develop 80% protection after their first SARS-Cov-2 vaccination. They recommend sending the second dose to countries with limited vaccine supplies but high COVID rates.
Preventing cornea rejection
Israeli doctors have discovered that 3% of cornea transplant patients experienced blurry vision following their second Pfizer coronavirus vaccination. The doctors diagnosed that the cornea grafts were being rejected by the awakened immune response and prescribed steroids to quickly stop rejection.
Protein linked to brain cancer & aging
Scientists at Israel’s Ben Gurion University have found that protein YY1 activates the gene TP73-AS1 which is known to protect glioblastoma brain cancer from chemo treatments. The same protein and gene are present in aging brains and the knowledge advances cancer research.
Lower cholesterol and reduce anxiety
Scientists at Israel’s Weizmann Institute have been testing beta-sitosterol – a cholesterol lowering substance found in avocados and nuts. They believe it can also reduce anxiety without the side-effects that current anti-depressant medications have. The results support further trials.
Israel’s Lydus Medical has developed Vesseal – a device to help perform the most complex of surgical procedures – connecting ultra-small blood vessels – automatically. It will revolutionize organ transplants, by-pass surgery etc. and will make millions of life-saving surgeries much safer and quicker.
More patient data organized
Israel’s new WEF tech pioneer MDClone (see here previously) has added CIUSSS West-Central Montreal to its previous Canadian hospital (Ottawa) now using its ADAMS patient data management system. ADAMS has just been named MedTech’s Best Healthcare Big Data Platform of the year.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
Israeli women agritech pioneers
Last week’s newsletter featured Biotipac – winner of ACT Foodtech’s “Women of AgriFood Nation” competition. This video highlights the other female-led contestants – Yo-egg, IncrediBowl, Fermata, Maolac and BugEra. All are new to this newsletter.
Israeli woman heads US quantum computing startup
Israel’s Shahar Keinan is CEO of US-based Polaris Quantum Biotech which is using super-fast quantum computers to speed up years-long search for new treatments. Polarisqb is currently searching a cure for endometriosis, affecting about 10% of women globally.
Israel’s first deaf MK
Shirley Pinto (Yamina) is Israel’s first deaf member of Knesset (Parliament). The daughter of deaf parents, Pinto lectured at Bar-Ilan University’s Sign Language Interpreting program. She joins Energy Minister Karin Elharrar – the first Israeli minister with disabilities.
Mother of 7 is a lifesaver
Pre-school director Hila, a mother of 7 children jumped at the chance to become an EMT for United Hatzalah. Her husband, Dovie, was so moved by the important work that his wife was doing, that he too became a United Hatzalah volunteer.
Second shock saves electrocuted Arab
Kibbutz Gat manager Ehud is also a volunteer medic for Israel’s United Hatzalah. He recently saved an Arab kibbutz worker who had electrocuted himself by simultaneous contact with electricity and water. Ehud and a colleague used a defibrillator shock to bring the Arab back to life.
I love it here
Mansoor Mohammad bin Shamekh al-Mazooqi was delighted to be the first Emirati to study in Israel. 19-year-old Mansoor from Dubai is studying for a bachelor’s degree in government at the IDC (Interdisciplinary Center) in Herzliya. The UAE flag became the 91st national flag flying at the IDC.
Saving thousands of lives in India
Israel has sent 1,300 oxygen concentrators and 400 respirators to India to combat Covid (see here previously). Israel’s private sector has raised $85,000 for equipment. Israeli technology is diagnosing cases in Indian hospitals and daily new cases have come down from 350,000 to around 60,000.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Israelis develops the IPU
Intel has unveiled the infrastructure processing unit, or IPU – development led by Israel’s Ilan Avital, Data Center Platforms Group VP and Head of the Engineering Division. The new chip is designed to relieve the load from processors (CPUs) and significantly improve the performance of web services.
Breakthrough in nano-optics
Scientists at Israel’s Technion have successfully “trapped” light in material just a few atoms thick. They then observed it with their own quantum microscope. It shows that ultra-high-speed fiber optic cables could be made as thin as one nanometer – a thousand times smaller than current cables.
Must-see nano transformation
Scientists at Tel Aviv University have transformed transparent calcite nanoparticles into visible gold-like particles. It can provide major benefits to optical & MRI imaging, sensing, photothermal therapy, photoacoustic tomography, bioimaging, and delivery of targeted cancer therapy.
Nanochip for studying cancer receptors
Scientists at Israel’s Ben Gurion University have developed a silicone nanochip that mimics an artificial cancer cell and its receptors. They can now study immune cells (e.g. lymphocytes) as they attempt to destroy the artificial cell. It reveals some surprising results.
Israel’s Senecio uses sterile male mosquitos (see here previously) to control the disease-spreading insect. Now, Israel’s diptera.ai has developed a subscription-based “Sterile Insect Technique (SIT-as-a-service)”. Diptera.ai’s customers receive shipments of sterile male mosquitos ready for release.
Going to the movies is a breath of fresh air
Israeli cinema audiences will be able to enjoy a unique post-corona atmosphere. Israel’s Tadiran’s Air Care 02 system is being installed in all 127 of Israel’s Cinema City’s movie theaters. The system removes around 90% of all pollutants including mold, viruses and bacteria.
Dispensing gloves efficiently
Israeli-founded, US-based Texas Medical Technology has developed the iNitrile disposable glove dispenser machine. Not only does it dispense and fit gloves automatically, but it also uses AI software to track and predict glove usage. It is advertised to reduce wastage by 12-15%.
Three Israeli women use recycled materials for their sustainable fashion businesses. Bahdra Goldshmit reuses fabrics to make wedding dressses. Elinor Nathaniel of Remeant turns plastic from packaging materials into textile for fashion accessories. And Noa Sharon uses leftover precious metals to make jewelry.
Want a job in hi-tech?
Read this. Even without a technical background it is possible to join Israel’s diverse and imaginative hi-tech ecosystem. This article features animators, musicians and artists who are working in places they could have never imagined. https://www.calcalistech.com/ctech/articles/0,7340,L-3909661,00.html
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
Israel opens to tourists
From 1st July, individual tourists will be able to enter Israel subject to providing a SARS-CoV-2 vaccination certificate and various pre & post arrival tests.
WEF Pioneers for 2021
The latest World Economic Forum list of 100 Technology Pioneers includes five Israeli companies. They are CropX, MDClone, Cheq, MyndYou, and Phinergy. The WEF predicts they are “poised to have a significant impact on business and society.” All have been featured in this newsletter.
Autonomous irrigation for Indian farmers
Israel’s SupPlant (see here previously) grew its smart irrigation business by 1,200% in 2020. Already widely used in Mexico, South Africa, Argentina, Australia and Kenya, SupPlant aims for over 2 million smallholders in Africa and India to be utilizing its technology in 2022.
McFalafel in McPita
After a decade’s absence, Israeli McDonald’s (which includes kosher branches) is relaunching falafel in pita breads. Customers will be able to purchase a McFalafel, McKebab or crispy chicken in a mini pita with tehina (tahini), lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles. It will have plenty of competition though.
3D printing Robot Chef begins trials
Israel’s SavorEat (see here previously) is commencing restaurant trials of its Robot Chef that 3D-prints and cooks vegan burgers in six minutes with no human contact. Burger options are “sporty” (high protein), chef’s choice or “juicy”, and cooked rare, medium or well done.
Real tea in Israel!
The “where can you get a decent cup of tea in Israel?” joke is over. Israel’s Ceremonie Tea produces a wide array of quality teas and herbal infusions. They include English Breakfast, Green tea, lavender Earl Grey, alongside the more classic Israeli versions. They come loose, in bags, pyramids and cube sachets.
Broadcasting South African sports
Israel’s Pixellot (see here previously) has signed an agreement with pay-TV sports provider Supersport to establish a high-school sports network to serve athletes, coaches, and scouts across Africa. Pixellot automatically streams games and their highlights to any device, live or on-demand.
Bringg – the next Unicorn
Israel’s Bringg (see here previously), which offers a delivery logistics platform for the enterprise market, has just raised $100 million of funding. The investment values the company at $1 billion, the financial status of a Unicorn.
NextSilicon – another Unicorn
Israel’s NextSilicon has developed innovative technology which uses software algorithms to speed up silicon-based computing platforms. It could lead to breakthroughs in supercomputer applications. NextSilicon recently raised $120 million to value the company at $1.5 billion (Unicorn status).
Claroty – yet another Unicorn
Israeli cybersecurity company Claroty (see here previously) has just raised $140 million to make it Israel’s third Unicorn (billion-dollar company) in one week.
AppsFlyer to hire 300
Israel’s AppsFlyer (see here previously) is recruiting 300 new employees in Israel by the end of 2021, taking its local workforce to around 1,000 people and 1,400 across the world. AppsFlyer is mainly expanding its R&D departments, developing marketing measurement software for its clients.
Investment in Israeli startups:
WalkMe raised $287 million (IPO); Claroty raised $140 million; NextSilicon raised $120 million; Bringg raised $100 million; Glassbox raised $100 million (IPO); Gloat raised $57 million; Duda raised $50 million; Pulsenmore raised $40 million (IPO); Komodor raised $21 million; Carbyne raised $20 million; Silentium raised $20 million; SupPlant raised $10 million; nSure.ai raised $6.8 million; 8fig raised $6.5 million; Diptera.ai raised $3 million; Lydus Medical raised $2.7 million;
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT`
What to expect in post-Covid Israel
Here is a fun article on some changes and not so differences that visitors to Israel might experience when they next visit Covid-free Israel. They include sunshine, crowds, vaccination stories, post-pandemic pride, no room at the restaurant, takeaway addiction, alfresco dining and wine experts.
Euro medals for Linoy
Israel’s Linoy Ashram won gold in the clubs event at the European Rhythmic Gymnastics Championships in Varna, Bulgaria. It was the first Euro gold won by an Israeli gymnast in a single exercise. She also won silver medals in the ball and the hoop categories and placed fourth in her ribbon routine.
Orthodox Jewish mother & marathon runner
An interview of Beatie Deutsch, an observant Jewish mother who doesn’t stop running. She ran one marathon seven months pregnant and after another stood at the top of the podium holding both her prize and a baby. Proof that success doesn’t have to compromise your principles.
THE JEWISH STATE
A global Jewish education network
The Israeli government is partnering with Herzog College to create a Jewish education network that will liaise with all 1,500 Jewish schools around the world. The $12 million initiative will connect Jewish children and establish international frameworks for dialogue between educators.
Support in Urdu
Shaheen Chishti is a Muslim activist who educates about the Shoah and Israel in Urdu – a language spoken by 600 million Muslims in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia and elsewhere. He stresses the need to think of Israel in terms of building partnerships for business and for education.
On the wings of eagles
30 years ago, on Jun 24 – 25 1991, Israel rescued 14,325 Jews from war-torn Ethiopia in Operation Solomon – the world’s largest humanitarian airlift. They were flown from Addis Ababa to Tel Aviv on 35 Israeli aircraft. The Ethiopians’ 2,500-year-old dream came true in just 36 hours.
500 new immigrants from 20 countries
In what has been hailed as “Aliyah super week” by the Jewish Agency for Israel, 500 new immigrants from over 20 countries arrived in Israel in just 7 days. And immigration from North America has reached 1,100 this year with dozens more groups arriving in August.
Am Yisrael Chai
The annual Jerusalem Day parade took place this week. Some 5,000 Israelis danced with flags to celebrate the anniversary of Jerusalem’s reunification in 1967.
See the history of Israel
Jacob has added 12 videos to his site describing the history of the State of Israel.
Unearthing the origin of Judaism
Dr. Yonatan Adler of Ariel University is director of the Origins of Judaism Archaeological Project. It is documenting the archaeologic evidence relating to the practice of Judaism in Israel earlier than the first century BCE. The findings of the project will be published in a book next year.
Can you dig it?
Archaeologists have found evidence at Sde Boker in the Negev that migrating Neanderthals and homo-sapiens met and interbred in only one tiny area of the world about 50,000 years ago. That area was the Land of Israel – amazing! Please watch the exciting ILTV video below.