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Tzedek-Info from Israel No. 125                         Sept-Oct 2017

Awards & performances

- An organic olive oil from the Tamir family estate won the gold medal at the London International Health Olive Oil Competitions 2017, among 148 brands.
– Students from the School of Mechanical Engineering at Tel Aviv University won in 2016 the 4nd place of the international university competition for the construction and flight of unmanned aircraft.
– The graduation film “Routes” (“Drakhim”) by Lior Geller, directed and directed by Steve Tisch of Tel Aviv University Film School now holds the Guinness World Record for Shortest student film with the most awards. The 20-minute short film was screened at over 60 festivals in 36 countries, and won 24 awards, including top prizes from the Jerusalem Film Festival, Beijing Film Festival and International Association awards. film schools. A daring crime drama, it tells the story of an Arab child from the city of Lod who dreams of escaping the world of violence and drugs in which he grew up, and who obtains the help of a demobilized Israeli soldier.
– According to the “Inter-Nations” network, Israel is the 3rdnd countries out of 45 where it is good to raise children, after Finland and Czechoslovakia

High Tech

– Founded in 2015 by Ariel Zamir, Eli David and Guy Caspi in Tel Aviv, Fifth Dimension specializes in artificial intelligence and employs a hundred people. The start-up helps states to analyze their mass data and, thanks to them, to fight against terrorism. Fifth Dimension has developed a tool for analyzing large volumes of data in real time (deep learning) through the use of artificial intelligence. Society can thus predict or detect “threats”.
– Booming with the advent of the new economy, office sharing between freelancers and small companies is
promoted by WeWork which has 100 members. This start-up is the work of Adam Neumann, which is worth $000 billion. The specificity of WeWork lies in a service offer that promotes exchanges and meetings between its members. Among the various services, a free bar, sports lessons, a free breakfast once a week, conferences, but also a social network that offers a connection between its members. Thirtieth country of establishment, in France a new space of 2,5 m2400 was opened in Paris 2, rue Lafayette. Benefits range from 9e/month at 890e/month.
– The startup StemRad has developed protective belts against radioactivity for workers in Fukushima and Chernobyl. She is now testing jackets designed to protect astronauts from harmful radiation in space. The tailor-made "AstroRad" jackets will be worn by NASA astronauts during the trip to Mars scheduled for mid-2030.

Tourism & transportation

– Subsidiary of “Urban Aeronautics” of Yavne, Metro Skyways plans to build an electric aerial tramway formed of individual cells for 4 passengers, called VTOL, (vertical take-off and landing flying car), flying vehicle with vertical take-off / landing, based on the rotor of the parent company with “Fancraft” technology. This company has already produced “Cormorant”, a 6,2m x 2,15m aerial vehicle for transporting 2 wounded. The project will be completed in 5 years, and will be designed to run on any fuel, even hydrogen.
– According to Lior Zeno-Zamasky who organized the EcoMotion exhibition in Jaffa, 550 start-ups are specialized in transport technologies
- " Rails for Regional Peace is the new rail link plan between Haifa, Jordan and the emirates of the Arabian Peninsula. According to Transport Minister Yisrael Katz, this plan would have the support of the United States. You should know that the distance between the main Saudi port of Dammam and Haifa is 6000 km by sea, while it is only 600 km by land
– According to the Minister of Energy and Infrastructure Youval Steinitz, an agreement has been reached with Europe to build in 8 years an undersea network for the transport to Europe of natural gas from the eastern Mediterranean, via Cyprus, Greece and Italy. This 2000 km long pipeline network will cost $5,5 billion.


– There are many huge ancient pools in Jerusalem that were used by pilgrims during their 3 annual climbs to the Temple Mount, which were used for washing, drinking, ablutions or ritual (Soltan, Hezekiah, Shiloah, Israel…) , according to Dr. David Gurevich, an archaeologist at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. They were up to 30 m deep and 120 m side. Residents of the town also had their own private swimming pool.
– Located near the Temple Mount, around the southwest section of the Western Wall, the garden Davidson Center Archaeological features antiquities from the Second Temple and early Muslim and Byzantine periods, collected since the end of the Six Day War. According to Pini Refael, head of education and tourism for the Society for the Restoration and Development of the Jewish Quarter, the garden showcases nearly 3 years of history in a historic location: Since the Six Day War, there have been many university delegations from all over the world to conduct excavations around the Temple Mount, as no excavation had not taken place on the Temple Mount itself… Layer after layer, the discoveries were made over a perimeter covering 3 m000, with a depth of up to 2 to 15 meters…. We found the remains of a gate and a wall that date from the period of King Solomon, as well as thousands of coins, ancient jars, seals and stones with Hebrew inscriptions from the period of the 20nd Temple »
– According to the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), the discoveries at Caesarea are the result of one of the most important conservation projects ever carried out in the country. For archaeologist Peter Gendelman, this is undoubtedly the complex and interesting project he has worked on in his 30-year career. According to Guy Swersky, vice president of the Rothschild Caesarea Foundation, Caesarea was an important city from Roman times until the time of the Crusaders.It was by far the most important port city in this region of the Middle East“- A small mother-of-pearl tablet engraved with a menorah (seven-branched candlestick) was discovered there, proof of the Jewish presence on the site from 4/5nd s. Caesarea was built by King Herod I of Judea some 1 years ago.
– In the rubble of the Temple Mount thrown into the Kidron Valley in 1999, during the illegal underground construction of Arab places of worship, a shard of a human-sized statue was found, which was particularly interesting, representing a 3,5 inch, 3500cm, in black stone of Egyptian origin, dating from 4000/70 years. We also found the remains of a statue's shoulder, scarabs, seals and Egyptian jewelry from the same period. To date, XNUMX% of the rubble has been sifted by the teams of Dr. Gabriel Barkay and Zachi Dvira.
In the rubble, another interesting discovery: the carefully carved Doric style capital of a column of the Temple of Jerusalem, having 75 cm in circumference at its top. The 12,5m column was part of the double colonnade that surrounded the piazza of the Temple Mount and which carried a cedar roof protecting pilgrims.


Did you know ? The laboratory of Prof. Krylov of Tel Aviv University's School of Engineering specializes in the development of millimeter-scale micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) and even billionth-of-a-meter nanosystems (NEMS). These tiny sensors are implanted in the automobile, aeronautics, smartphones, robots, unmanned aircraft, drones and autonomous vehicles….
Did you know ? The Odyssea Program is intended to promote the development of young scientific talents who manifest themselves at an early age, in particular to pupils in the fourth year class presenting excellent academic results and having successfully passed two selection exams and a preparation course for 'summer. It offers three sections: Physics, Cyber ​​Studies and Biomed. Built on university content, the program gives the right to credits that future students can keep for a period of up to 5 years after their military service.
Did you know ?  The Israel Foundation for Modern Agriculture has brought together international agribusiness experts, government officials, academics and students to lead the movement "clean meatfrom small scale production to mass production on a global scale. There "clean meatalso called cultured meat, is real meat derived from animal cells from non-slaughter food production facilities. It is cleaner in terms of hygiene and environmentally friendly. Clean Meat is also intended to reduce animal suffering and health crises caused by pathogens and food drug residues in meat from slaughtered animals.


A concrete plant has been built in the northern Gaza Strip to speed up the ongoing construction of an underground barrier to neutralize Hamas terror tunnels. This barrier, which includes several mechanisms over almost 64 km along the border, will include a “smart” fence similar to the one that exists today along the border with Egypt, underground concrete walls, as well as secret tunnel detection technology.

Inventions and Discoveries

– Dr. Elitzur and his Technion team have developed a way to produce hydrogen from water and aluminum. This patented method can be used on board aircraft in mid-flight to produce hydrogen from water (including aircraft waste water) and aluminum particles, safely and inexpensively. The hydrogen can then be transformed into electrical energy for in-flight use. This breakthrough could pave the way for cleaner aircraft that would replace the hydraulic and pneumatic systems typically powered by the main engine. According to Dr. Elitzur “ The hydrogen produced on board the aircraft during the flight can be routed to a fuel cell for the production of electrical energy. This technology offers a good answer to several challenges, such as hydrogen storage, avoiding the problems associated with storing hydrogen in liquid or gaseous state. – The team used a Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell – and an aluminum activation process, patented by study co-authors Prof Alon Gany and Dr Valery Rosenband. This technology would have the following advantages: quieter operations on board; drastic reductions in CO2 emissions; compact storage, no need for hydrogen storage tanks on board; more efficient electrical power generation; reduced wiring (several fuel cells can be located close to their point of use): thermal efficiency (heat generated by fuel cell can be used for defrosting, gas jet heating): flammable vapors reduced in fuel tanks (production of inert gas). In summary, "efficient hydrogen production and storage is the future of safe and energy-efficient aircraft needs »
– Pr Oded Béjà from the Technion Faculty of Biology and his team led by Dr Alon Philosof sequenced DNA segments to identify microorganisms living in the waters of the Gulf of Eilat. They used metagenomics, a bioinformatics approach that combines computer algorithms with biological knowledge. They were able to reconstruct the genomes of viruses that attack maritime archaebacteria. A total of 26 viruses previously unknown to science were detected in this detective work. This complex reconstruction was made possible thanks to the use of the ATLAS computer system, used to analyze the results of the CERN particle accelerator in Switzerland. Dr. Philosof: “Based on the similarity between the segments of the genetic material of the viruses and those of the marine archaebacteria, it was concluded that these viruses attack these microorganisms"
– Prof. Malka Cohen-Armon from the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology at Tel-Aviv University Faculty of Medicine has discovered a new method of targeted destruction of aggressive cancer cells exploiting a natural cell suicide mechanism that exists in all cells. The study opens new hope for the development of drugs suitable for a variety of malignancies resistant to current treatments. Prof. Cohen-Armon: “ We had discovered as early as 2009 that molecules derived from phenanthrene (aromatic hydrocarbon called tricyclic) effectively kill breast cancer metastases that do not respond to traditional therapies”, … We then examined the effect of these molecules on other types treatment-resistant malignant tumours, such as ovarian cancer, colon cancer, pancreatic cancer, a rare form of brain cancer and lung cancer, and we have found that these molecules manage to destroy them in 48 to 96 hours. At the same time, we also found that the procedure causes no damage to healthy cells, and that damage to cancer cells occurs during cell division (mitosis). Following these results, we sought to study this process of destruction ».
- According to Dr. Shomron, breast cancer is the deadliest cancer in women and one in eight women worldwide will experience the disease in her lifetime. The chance of survival for patients, 8 years after diagnosis, has only increased by 5% over the last 3 years, and the chances of recovery decrease considerably after the development of metastases.
His lab and his team sought to identify metastases and stop the mechanism by which cancer cells were moving, so that they could not migrate from the primary tumor to vital organs of the body.
They used huge databases and they crossed 4 types of data: DNA mutations that characterize breast cancer, a subset of genes responsible for modifying the shape of the cell, genes which present domains of links with regulatory microRNAs — capable of extinguishing the expression of a gene — and clinical data on the mutations actually recorded in patients with breast cancer. The cross-checking of the data made it possible to identify a specific gene belonging to the four groups and to deactivate it.

Social issues

– 1000 teenagers tried to commit suicide in 2016, or 5% of 20 teenagers at risk. According to the Elem group, a thousand live on the streets and 000 individuals are involved in prostitution. The suicide rate is nevertheless among the 800 lowest compared to 2 European countries.
– 67% of young people aged 15/24 consider themselves to be on the right, according to the Macro Center for Political Economy and the Friederich Ebert Foundation. On the religious level, we have gone from 9% of ultra-Orthodox in 1998 to 15% today. For lay people, we went from 50% to 40%.
74% of young people consider that the main problem is not safety, but the cost of living...


– In 2004, desalination plants provided 4% of household drinking water, 13 years later, 75 % of the water consumed comes from the Mediterranean, the rest being mainly pumped from Lake Tiberias. Each year, 600 million m3 of drinking water are produced by reverse osmosis by the Society Israel Desalination Engineering Technologies (IDE)- In 40 minutes, water pumped 1 km off the coast, is transported to the plant located on the Sorek site south of Tel Aviv, and made drinkable thanks to 50 membranes porous, enclosed in white vertical cylinders, filtering the water under high pressure and throwing the salt crystals back into the sea.
– The recycling of sewage products places Israel in the rank of world leader for the reuse of wastewater with a rate of 85%!


Each citizen consumes 2,5 kg/year of extra virgin oil, ten times less than a Greek. Yet the country produces 19 t/year of high-quality olive oil from the Galilee and the Golan – 500 Israeli olive oil producers have won gold certificates at the prestigious international competition TerraOlivo in Sicily.


– In 2016, the country's economy was flourishing: GDP growth rate of 3%, unemployment rate of 4,8%, i.e. 3nd after Hong Kong and South Korea and 10nd on the innovation index. GDP/capita: $13 - Number of children per Jewish woman: 800
– 739,000 visitors came to 1er quarter of 2017, an increase of 25% compared to last year, creating 5000 new jobs and injecting $1 billion in GNP. Religious pilgrimages now represent 13% of all stays.


A new Steinhardt Museum of Natural History is set to open this summer at Israel's Tel Aviv University. Shaped like Noah's Ark, the 8000 m2, $48 million building pays homage to natural history and houses a collection of over 5 million specimens. It is already considered the region's largest and most comprehensive center for research, education and biodiversity conservation. Designed by Kimmel Eshkolot Architects, the Steinhardt Natural History Museum contains a public section open to visitors and an academic research section for faculty and staff.
According to Professor Marcus Feldman of Stanford University, Israel is the crossroads through which all plants, animals and human beings passed from Africa to Europe and Asia ...  It is the only place in the world where you can see this historical depth. In 10 or 20 years, the Steinhardt Museum will become a major world center for the study of biological systematics, evolution, paleoecology and paleo-anthropology. ". See


– Retinal degeneration in the elderly is a disease that is particularly prevalent in the Western world. 30% of adults over the age of 75 suffer from it, and 6 to 8% of them suffer from total vision loss. Prof. Reubinoff and Prof. Eyal Banin, Director of the Center for Retinal Degenerative Diseases in Hadassah's Department of Ophthalmology, successfully transplanted embryonic stem cells in five patients. Embryonic stem cells are harvested from embryos donated by couples who want no more children, fertilized in vitro and frozen. Pr Reubinoff created Cellcure, which specializes in the development of embryonic stem cell transplants in patients with incurable diseases in the nervous system and eyes. For AMD (macular deficiency of the retina), the culture is carried out from stem cells which contain only the pigment cells of the retina.
– As our brain ages, our cognitive abilities naturally decline and it becomes more difficult to learn new things or fix our attention on several subjects at the same time. Under the direction of Dr Mona Dvir-Ginzberg and the late Prof. Itai Bab, Hebrew University of Jerusalem researchers have been looking for ways to slow or even reverse this process. They injected doses of cannabis extract (THC) into mice which have the experimental advantage of having a short lifespan. They found that mice given only a placebo displayed learning problems and memory loss based on natural age. In contrast, the cognitive functions of the cannabis-treated animals were just as good as the functions of the two-month-old mice used as a control group. The treatment completely reversed the loss of performance in old animals. It remains to be seen whether these results are confirmed at the level of the human brain.
– Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas to regulate blood sugar levels. In the case of resistance, the body needs an increasing amount of this hormone to enable cells to absorb glucose. If insulin is insufficient, too much glucose spills into the blood, leading to the development of pre-diabetes, then overt diabetes and an increased risk of heart disease and stroke. According to a study conducted by Ph.D. student Miri Lutski of Tel Aviv University School of Medicine under the direction of Profs. Uri Goldbourt and David Tanne, people with insulin resistance, caused in part by obesity and lack of physical activity, experience an accelerated decline in cognitive abilities such as execution and memory functions, qu whether they have diabetes or not. Professor Tanne: “ These are very important findings, as they can help identify groups of individuals at increased risk for cognitive aging and dementia in later life. ". If glucose levels begin to exceed the norm, he advises “ If you want to avoid insulin resistance and better protect your brain from aging, exercise, eat a healthy, balanced diet, and watch your weight”


– 7 applications for a more religious life: Tefillin Mirror for wearing tefillin, Minyan Now search for people in the neighborhood to reach 10, Shabbat & Holiday Times, gives dates and times, Kosher Near Me, find kosher stores, Smart Siddur, to avoid carrying books, Separia, mobile complete library, @TheKotel, pray at the Wall at home.

Sources: IsraelValley, SiliconWadi, …

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