An AI baby monitor; Strategic partnership with the US; Twins make Aliyah and join elite Navy unit; and much more!
by: Michael Ordman
ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
Almost all babies vaccinated against polio
Israel has successfully rolled out its polio vaccine to children between the ages of six weeks and 18 months – the age most at risk of contracting the disease. The vaccination rate was only 81% in March, when the first case of the virus in 34 years was detected. The rate is now 99%.
Protecting the elderly from Coronavirus
A study of some 40,000 elderly Israelis shows that the fourth COVID-19 vaccination reduced coronavirus death rates among the most vulnerable Israelis by 72%. It also slashed infection rates in that population by 60% and hospitalizations by 34%.
HBOT relieves symptoms of long COVID
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) significantly improved the condition of 37 patients suffering from post-COVID-19 cognitive symptoms. The clinical trial was conducted by the Sagol Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Research at Shamir Medical Center and Tel Aviv University.
Early detection of Parkinson’s
Researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have adapted a technique called quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (qMRI) to reveal biological changes in the cellar tissue of the striatum an organ in the brain which is known to deteriorate during the progress of Parkinson’s disease.
Antibiotic alternative from vegetables
Researchers from Israel’s Ben-Gurion University have discovered that the phytochemical 3,3′-diindolylmethane (DIM) kills bacteria and heals wounds fast. DIM is derived from cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli. The BGU spinoff startup Lifematters is further developing DIM.
Pay attention – are you awake?
We know that Israelis are always having brainwaves, but now researchers at Tel Aviv University have studied them in detail. They found that alpha-beta waves (10 to 30 Hz) are not emitted during sleep or unconscious states. This can help detect if coma patients are aware of external sounds.
Diamond drill clears clogged arteries
71-year-old Natan at Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center is the first person in Israel to have his severe arterial calcification cleared using a tiny crown coated with a diamond chip spinning at 100,000 rpm. Natan’s cancer treatment prevented conventional catheterization and angioplasty.
From fighter jets to the operating theatre
The surgical headsets from Israel’s Beyeonics (see here previously) began life as headsets for pilots. Beyeonics is a spinoff from Israeli defense contractor Elbit. Its product now has FDA approval for ophthalmic surgeons and there are plans to adapt it for spinal surgery.
An AI baby monitor
Israeli startup LittleOne.Care is developing a wearable artificial intelligence device that monitors a baby’s sounds and movements, alerting the parents to emergencies and developmental problems. It can detect abuse at daycare, if baby is forgotten in a car, or if the device is removed.
A bright Israeli global SPARK
Israeli-born and educated Prof. Daria Mochly-Rosen of Stanford University spoke at a recent Rambam Medical Center international symposium. She has founded 3 startups plus SPARK -an academic-industry partnership that has funded 48 projects and is a global model for translational medicine.
Training North American teens to be lifesavers
50 members of youth organization NCSY, from different parts of the United States and Canada, have graduated as fully registered emergency medical responders (EMRs). It follows completion of a summer training program with Israeli emergency NGO United Hatzalah.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
My brother’s keeper
When MDA EMT Ali came to the aid of a heart-attack patient, his own heart almost stopped. The patient was his brother Fahed. Ali had to restart Fahed’s heart with a defibrillator several times on the way to the hospital. Thankfully, Fahed made a full recovery, to the relief of his children – Ali’s nephews.
Training PA health workers
Israel’s Sheba Medical Center has launched a program to train female Palestinian Arab healthcare professionals to use telehealth technologies. Sheba’s OB-GYN Beyond initiative will enable them to remotely monitor pregnant Arab women and their fetuses in the Hebron area.
Peace tree for Abraham Accords
Representatives of the Abraham Accords countries Israel, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Morocco planted a “Peace Tree” at the 2022 World Games in Birmingham Alabama.
History-making in Morocco
Lieutenant General Aviv Kochavi was made very welcome on the first-ever official trip by an IDF Chief of Staff to Morocco. Meanwhile, Israel and Morocco have signed an agreement on intellectual property, to encourage joint innovation and promote cooperation on patents.
When Iraq’s Miss Universe contestant Sarah Idan posed with Miss Israel in 2017, it propelled her on the path of bringing people closer together everywhere. She founded the NGO Humanity Forward to build bridges among Muslims and Jews and promote tolerance, mutual understanding and, of course, peace.
Ex-IDF soldiers renovate Tanzanian schools
Israel’s Rafi Ryker founded the non-profit Afrikan – Working Together. It sends ex-IDF volunteers to renovate schools and build clean water infrastructure. They transformed eight schools and the water system in the village of Malinda, Tanzania, reducing morbidity by 75%.
Strategic partnership with Austria
Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer met Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid in Jerusalem and signed an agreement that ranges from issues of security and cyber to health and tourism.
Strategic partnership with the US
Israel and the United States have announced a strategic high-level dialogue on technology to enhance their strategic partnership in cutting-edge technologies. It follows US partnerships with the UK, Australia, and Japan and will address pandemic preparedness, climate, AI, and quantum science.
Global summit launches food and energy projects
The leaders of Israel, India, the US, and UAE convened the inaugural I2U2 virtual summit. Among other goals and projects, the UAE is to invest $2 billion in eco-friendly food production parks across India that will use Israeli and US private sector expertise.
Keeping the lights on in Ukraine
The “Light Up Health” campaign of Israeli NGO SmartAID maintains power to Ukraine’s Kyiv Ochmatdyt Children’s Hospital, EmergeNYC Care Unit in Mykolaiv, and Uman General Hospital. SmartAID has supplied emergency generators, spotlights for surgeons, solar power and more.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Preventing food waste
This latest Israel21c article features several Israeli foodtech startups not previously included in this newsletter. They include Anina (ugly vegetables), Ripe Guard (expiry dates), Varcode (time & temperature tags), Bountica (antifungal peptides), ZOEPAC, and a new video from Yarok Microbio.
Growing “out of the box”
At the Central Arava R&D (Vidor) Center you can see Golden berries, Gulliver’s spinach, Momordia (bitter melon, with a “natural insulin”), and kiwano (horned African melon). All are grown in saline water and temperatures ranging from 40 degrees Celsius midday to 10 degrees at night.
Ethiopian superfood seeds
Hebrew University of Jerusalem researchers are developing a gluten-free superfood from Ethiopian teff seeds. Full of amino acids, minerals, fiber, and protein, teff can grow in drought conditions. Teff seeds have been planted from the Golan Heights to Yotvata in the Negev desert.
Growing CO2-eating trees in the UK
Israeli drip-irrigation specialist Netafim is helping UK’s Carbon Plantations to increase the yield of its 134 hectares of Paulownia trees in Suffolk, England. Paulownia trees consume carbon dioxide seven times faster than other indigenous species.
The Israel Defense Forces focuses on protecting the State of Israel, but it i
The eco-friendly IDF
s also trying to protect the environment. This involves a 70% recycling target; sensors in garbage containers for efficient collection; converting organic waste into biogas; and a 20% reduction in the use of disposable cutlery.
Sports-tech at the Maccabiah
Several Israeli sports-tech startups showcased at a special Maccabiah Games event at the Silvan Adams National Velodrome in Tel Aviv. They include Pixellot, BlazePod, MindFly, PlayerMaker, and i-BrainTech, New to this newsletter is RSPCT – which provides basketball shot analysis.
Streamlining supplies for small businesses
Israel’s Supplyve automates inventory and order management for small retailers, especially independent grocers, and their vendors. Users simply scan product barcodes using a smartphone app. Supplyve is integrated with Square and other point-of-sale systems.
Securing hospital equipment
Israel’s OneLayer is deploying its platform for private 5G cellular networks in the Galilee Medical Center and The Baruch Padeh Medical Center. OneLayer has partnered Nokia and Cellcom to secure hundreds of doctor carts, beds, and medical devices.
Israelis discover new planets
A team led by Tel Aviv University researchers has discovered, in distant solar systems, two giant planets. It is the first time that the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Gaia space observatory has been used to find new planets. The planets, Gaia-1b and Gaia-2b, orbit their suns in less than four days.
AIR ONE passes first test with flying colors
Israel’s AIR has successfully completed its first hover test of its AIR ONE flying car (see here previously). The full-scale, full-weight, prototype rose above Kibbutz Megiddo in northern Israel, supervised by the Civil Aviation Authority. A full flight test is planned for October.
Another Quantum leap
Israel’s Quantum Machines (see here previously) has developed a quantum operating system (QOP), a language (QUA), and has been selected to establish Israel’s $29 million Quantum Computing Center. Toyota has partnered Quantum Machines to allow Toyota customers access to quantum technologies.
The value of justice
Israel’s Darrow.ai is a platform that uses Artificial Intelligence to bring law breakers to justice. It processes class actions of negligence affecting large numbers of individuals – e.g., privacy breaches, consumer fraud, air pollution, and overcharges, which often are too complex to be progressed manually.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
Out with the old, in with the new
Some interesting facts in the latest IVC Israeli Tech Review report. Investment in established Israeli hi-tech startups was lower in 2022 than record-breaking 2021, but funds for early-stage startups were higher! Also, more Israeli startups launched in 2022 than for the same period in 2021.
$250 million fund for investment
Israel’s F2 Venture Capital has announced its largest-ever seed fund of $150 million for Israeli founders of startups, as well as another $100 million fund to continue backing existing portfolio companies. F2’s areas of focus include Fintech, AI, Big Data, Cloud Ops, and Cyber.
Social & environmental impact investing
Bridges Israel is a Venture Capital fund that invests in Israeli startups that aim to make financial returns alongside significant social and environmental impact. The startups cover technology in areas including agriculture, water, climate, and health. It sees Israel as the Impact Nation.
Israel’s one-millionth tourist
Israel’s Tourism Minister welcomed Belinda Desoyo Lee Marcelo, a resident of the United Arab Emirates – its millionth tourist of 2022, just over four months since pandemic-related travel restrictions were lifted on 1st March. Nearly a quarter of a million tourists arrived in Israel in June.
Building the value of startups
Wendy Blumfield writes how Haifa’s Road2 startup hub (see here previously) helps local entrepreneurs, industry leaders and investors turn their innovative ideas into inspiring businesses.
https://www.jpost.com/jerusalem-report/article-711978 (Premium subscription required for full access)
Clearer vision for Boeing 737 pilots
Israel’s Elbit Systems’ subsidiary Universal Avionics Systems has won a $33 million order for its ClearVision Enhanced Flight Vision Systems (EFVS) for Boeing 737NG aircraft. ClearVision features the SkyLens 360-degree field of view Head Wearable Display and EVS-5000 cameras.
Investments, takeovers and mergers to 24/7/22:
ForSight Robotics raised $55 million; Dot Compliance raised $23 million; Virility raised $10 million; Israel’s MedOne (data center hosting) has sold a 49% stake worth around $210 million, to Berkshire Partners.
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT`
Who by fire
Jonny Steel, VP Marketing at Israel’s Payoneer, shares insights after reading “Who By Fire: Leonard Cohen in the Sinai” by Matti Friedman. The Canadian Jewish singer / songwriter Leonard Cohen was transformed by his experiences in Israel during the 1973 Yom Kippur War.
Recent Israeli events featuring Adam’s Ale include the 7th annual Tekoa beer festival, which attracted nearly 3,000 people. Meanwhile, our local Netanya AACI hosted a lecture and tasting from Israel’s Jem’s Beer Factory based in Petah Tikva. And finally, Israel21c issued a guide to the many Israeli micro-brewing startups.
All happening in Jerusalem
Sharon captured the excitement of the Maccabiah Games opening ceremony and the Jerusalem streets in advance of the US President’s visit to Israel.
Israel’s first World Championship marathon medal
Kenyan-born Israeli Lonah Chemtai Salpeter won the bronze medal in the women’s marathon at the World Athletic Championships in Eugene, Oregon. She is only the third Israeli in history to win a medal at the competition.
More medals at World Game
Israeli Jiu-Jitsu athletes won two gold medals, one silver and two bronze at the World Games in Birmingham Alabama. Nimrod Ryeder won the men’s 77kg Ne-Waza. Meshy Rosenfeld won the women’s 57kg. Israel finished 11th overall, with seven gold medals, ahead of the UK and Spain.
Another Tour de France stage win
Israel – Premier Tech cyclist Hugo Houle described his win on Stage 16 of the Tour de France as “unbelievable”. He had previously finished third on Stage 13 and when the pack let him go ahead on the final climb, he said he “just went all in, full gas”.
THE JEWISH STATE
At the Jerusalem meeting of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Agency, Secretary General Josh Schwarcz said we are in historic times. They will bring at least 50,000 new immigrants to Israel this year, because of the war in Ukraine and from Ethiopia and other places – the largest number since the 1990s.
Twins make Aliyah and join elite Navy unit
Ari and Ron, twin 18-year-old brothers from New York, made Aliyah recently with Nefesh B’Nefesh. They applied to join the Navy at the highest possible level and were drafted into the prestigious “Shayetet 13” unit of the Naval Brigade.
One donation deserves another
13-year-old cancer patient Eyal underwent a successful bone marrow transplant. In gratitude for the donation of stem cells, Eyal donated his Nintendo to another patient, bringing joy to both children.
Terrorist victim survives to earn degree
Shira Ish-Ran, who was shot by terrorists in 2018, has now obtained the B.Ed degree she was studying for at the time. Although she lost her unborn baby in the attack, she said, “I love the nation of Israel much more than ever, and I want to raise people who appreciate this nation…”
IDF guards world’s largest collection of Torah scrolls
400 Torah scrolls are being safeguarded at an IDF military base. Some are 750 years old, written on thicker parchment than today. Many have interesting histories – one is called “The Prisoner”, as it was captured by Egypt in 1973 and “released” in 2000.
Good article containing details of some of the many archaeological discoveries, from just the last 12 months, that confirm the ancient connection of Israel to the Jewish people. Plus, a 2,000-year-old mikveh (ritual bath) found when installing an elevator for handicap access near the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.