Israel's Good News Newsletter to 21st Sept 2014

In the 21st Sept 2014 edition of Israel’s good news, the highlights include:

·        Leading-edge surgery from an Israeli hospital was broadcast live to 12,000 US doctors.
·        An Israeli scientist has developed antibodies to help fight influenza.
·        Israel has the 4th largest number of people with college degrees.
·        Syrian opposition leader praises Israeli doctors treating Syrians.
·        Israeli 3D technology wins Intel’s European Business Challenge competition.
·        Four Israeli universities are in the top 50 best places to study for an MBA.
·        A book used 1200 years ago to pray for Jerusalem now arrives in Jerusalem.

·        Last week’s Israel Good News descriptive summary “Little Israel makes a Big Impression”.  Also on Jerusalem Post and United With Israel. 

·        See the newsletter also on Jewish Business News, IsraelSeen and IsraPundit.

Page Down for more details on these and other good news stories from Israel.


12,000 doctors watch live innovative Israeli brain surgery.  (Thanks to United With Israel) A cutting-edge brain catheterization procedure was performed at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem while being broadcast live to 12,000 US doctors attending the world’s largest cardiovascular conference.

Uncovering the secrets of rabies.  (Thanks to Israel21c) A research team led by Eran Perlson of Tel Aviv University has discovered that the rabies virus hi-jacks the body’s nerve cell transport system to move quickly from an infected bite to the brain.  The knowledge could lead to new therapies to deal with the deadly virus.

Winter babies crawl 5 weeks earlier.  Researchers led by Dr. Osnat Atun-Einy of the University of Haifa, have documented that babies born in winter or spring start crawling at 30 weeks on average.  Those born in summer or autumn/fall begin crawling at around 35 weeks.

A cocktail to make stem cells.  Scientists at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have developed a cocktail of genes that is highly effective at reprogramming adult cells to become quality stem cells that can be used in transplant therapy.  These stem cells can then transform themselves into previously damaged tissue or organs.

New antibodies for fighting flu virus.  Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Yotam Bar-On has developed antibodies that enhance the body’s immune system to attack the flu virus.  These antibodies interfere with the protein neuraminidase (NA) - used by the flu virus to evade the immune system’s natural killer (NK) cells.

Why Israelis live longer.  (Thanks to Israel21c)  A new video reveals some (but not all) on the reasons why Israel’s life expectancy is the 4th highest in the world.

NFL to use Israeli brain scanner.  The US National Football League in the NCAA will use the brain scanner developed by Israel’s ElmindA to diagnose players who receive a concussion injury during the game.


Israel is the world’s 4th most educated country.  The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) ranks Israel 4th in the world with 46.4% having a tertiary (college) education.  Only Russia, Canada and Japan were higher.  The USA was 5th with 43.1%.

Yad Sarah lends out 320,000 medical items.  More than half a million Israeli residents benefited from services from Yad Sarah during the past year, with the voluntary organization saving the public coffers NIS 1.5 billion by lending out 320,000 items of medical equipment.

Kids of all religions learn together.  At Haifa’s Rambam Medical Center, the start of the school year means that young patients also begin their lessons.  Jews, Moslems, Christians, Druze, Arabs from Gaza, all children study together with other kids their age.

Israeli Arab female IDF commander.  This video consists of an interview with Commander Mona Lisa Abado - an Arab-Israeli from Haifa, who serves in the Israel Defense Forces.

Israeli & Arab medics talk peace in Australia.  Uri Shacham is head of Israel’s emergency service Magen David Adom.  Dr Mohammed Al Hadid is the president of the Jordanian Red Crescent.  The two medical and humanitarian leaders are sharing their experiences with Arabs and Jews living in Australia.

Syrian opposition leader visits Syrians in Israeli hospital.  Dr. Kamal Al-Labwani, exiled leader of Syria’s opposition, visited Israel’s Ziv Hospital and said, "I am grateful for the dedicated medical care given at the Ziv Medical Center to wounded Syrians, my people, who were hurt during the war. This moving humanitarian gesture is an opening for rapprochement between the two peoples and hope for peace on quieter days,"

Israeli doctors fight to save sight of Syrian boy.  More details of the 12-year-old Syrian boy brought by his brother to Israel on a donkey.  He lost one eye in the Syrian civil war and had primary surgery in Beirut on the other eye.  Israeli doctors performed retinal surgery but as yet are unsure if he will recover any vision.

1100 international students receive Israeli agriculture diplomas.  1100 students from 18 countries (including 500 from Africa) graduated with a diploma from Tel Aviv University in High Value Horticulture and Irrigation.  Reports from Uganda and Malawi news sites show the high value of this training in those countries.

Agriculture training in the Philippines.  The Israel Embassy in Manila hosted a forum on agricultural knowledge transfer, particularly in the field of integrated pest management and post harvest management of fruits and vegetables. Participants included various Philippine agricultural agencies and agriculture journalists.


Immense Heaven.  “Cosmic” is the only word to describe the work of a team of scientists including Professor Yehuda Hoffman of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.  Warning, this video may make you feel rather small.

Producing algae in the desert.  Algatechnologies produces the antioxidant astaxanthin from algae grown in its factory at Kibbutz Ketura in the Negev desert.  Astaxanthin is used in foods, medicines and cosmetics.  The company is investing 60 million shekels to expand the factory to grow new forms of beneficial microalgae. 

Fitterli is a perfect fit in Europe.  Israel’s Fitterli has won the 2014 Intel Business Challenge Europe.  With Fitterli’s technology, on-line retailers can show customers how clothes would look on a 3D representation of your own body.  An Intel spokesperson said, “The 3D technology offered by Fitterli is the kind of innovation Intel has come to expect from Israel  ….  unimaginable just a few years ago.”

CyberSpark is launched.  Jerusalem Venture Partners and BGN Technologies (technology transfer company of Ben-Gurion University) have set-up the CyberSpark Industry Initiative. The non-profit company will engage in the international promotion of the new cyber center, based in Beersheva's Advanced Technologies Park.

Israel to build its first bio-waste power plant.  Israel’s new bio-waste facility at Neot Hovav in the Negev will generate 5 megawatts of clean energy and process over one hundred thousand tons of organic waste per year.  It will significantly reduce the annual volume of landfill waste and the consequential soil contamination.

Go on, HopOn.  (Thanks to Israel21c) Riding a bus has never been easier.  Tel Aviv’s HopOn has inserted beacons in 2,000 buses and soon at bike stations and other transportation hubs. Some 10,000 users have installed the app, allowing them to hop on a bus or bike without worrying about how to pay.


Pango is on the move in America.  (Thanks to Atid-EDI) Pango mobile parking has recently launched in Curitiba, Brazil and expects to be live in other large Brazilian cities in the coming months.  In the United States, Pango is launching in Pennsylvania, New York, and Texas.  Pango has over a million users in 59 cities.

The best country to do your MBA.  Four Israeli universities are in the top 50 rankings of institutions for budding entrepreneurs to study for an MBA.  Tel Aviv University (at number 11) produced 50 graduates who went on to establish 56 start-ups.  Bar Ilan, Technion and Hebrew University of Jerusalem also featured highly.

ReWalk shares are up and running.  The share price of Israeli exoskeleton developers ReWalk Robotics more than doubled on the day of its Wall Street Initial Public Offering (IPO).  The 3 million shares, offered at $12 per share, reached $25.6 per share at close of business. By day 2, the price was $37.15.

Ericsson buys Fabrix.  Electronics giant Ericsson is buying Israel’s Fabrix for $95 million.  Fabrix specializes in cloud storage and computing and network-based video delivery.  Cablevision Systems uses Fabrix to help power its network-based Multi-Room DVR product that allows customers to simultaneously record 15 shows.

New national technical innovation authority.  Israel is establishing a new hi-tech authority, under the Office of the Chief Scientist, to enhance Israeli innovation and bolster economic growth. 

Matchmaking Israeli and Indian companies.  Israel’s Economic Office in Delhi held a seminar “Indo-Israel Cooperation in Water Security & Waste Water Management”.  India’s largest Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) companies met 15 Israeli water technology companies.  The event generated much interest.

Securing business in the USA.  Two Israeli cyber security companies (Sentrix and Secure Islands) have been successful in raising funds to expand into North America.

Bank of Israel’s governor gets an “A”.  "Global Finance" magazine has named Governor of the Bank of Israel, Karnit Flug, as one of the seven best central bank governors in the world.  The magazine gave Flug an "A" rating – higher than the heads of the central banks of some much larger economies.


 “My heart and soul belong to Israel.”  Violinist and conductor Maxim Vengerov is starring in the Vengerov Festival at the Tel Aviv Opera House.  Vengerov studied at the Jerusalem Academy of Music and now lives in St Petersburg.  Israel, however, “is in my genes,” said Vengerov. “My heart and soul belong to Israel.”

Lady Gaga duets with Tony Bennett.  Another one of those “Only in Israel” events.  Lady Gaga put on a show at Tel Aviv’s Yarkon Park in front of 23,000 fans.  In between her most famous hits, she performed “I can’t give you anything but love” with Tony Bennett – who had his own concert in Tel Aviv the next day.


1200-year-old prayer book comes to Jerusalem.  A 9th Century Babylonian siddur (Jewish prayer book) to go on display at Jerusalem’s Bible Lands Museum’s “Book of Books” exhibit of the most important texts ever seen in the Jewish State.  The 50-page Hebrew book is described as “a treasure of the Jewish People”.

The oldest Bnei Menashe to arrive in Israel.  On May 29, 2014, Aviel Hangshing landed in Israel, fulfilling a dream he has held for so many years. Hangshing is the most senior of the lost tribe of Bnei Menashe to arrive from India so far. “The day after we came to Israel was my 90th birthday!” he says, proudly.

Where will you eat your apple and honey?  To celebrate Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, the people at Israel21c asked some of their friends, “Where do you eat your apples and honey?” The answers were surprising.

Dream it. Do it.  An inspiring New Year message from the students of Israel’s Technion.  In 14 languages.