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Israel Innovation News

Thank you for visiting us! Part of IIP’s mission is to share the many innovations in scientific research and technology happening in Israel. As such, below you’ll find links to articles and videos of carefully selected content from a variety of sources on recent innovations in Israel. These articles are an extension of IIP's biweekly newsletter, which you can subscribe to here.


Article: “The Israeli start-up that wants to put an end to carnage on the roads”

April 7, 2024 – from The Jerusalem Post
LETSTOP, an Israeli startup, is attempting to tackle the problem of distracted driving by incentivizing responsible behavior through its app. Using advanced tech and AI, the app tracks phone usage while driving. It then provides customized feedback to improve driving habits and rewards safe driving with credits that are redeemable for vouchers or cryptocurrency.

Article: “Making Potatoes Into Factories For Growing Egg Protein”

April 4, 2024 – from NoCamels
Israeli startup PoLoPo is employing molecular farming to cultivate egg white protein within potatoes. The gene for ovalbumin, the main protein in egg whites, is created using their new proprietary SuperAA platform and inserted into potato plants. The modified potatoes are then grown and harvested like conventional potatoes. After harvesting, the egg white protein is extracted from them and turned into a powder for commercial use in food production as a vegan-friendly protein. The company has launched pilot schemes in Israel and has plans for marketing it in the US by 2026, pending regulatory approval.

Article: “Do Green Environments Help Heart Patients Live Longer?”

April 4, 2024 – from Tel Aviv University
Tel Aviv University researchers have conducted a pioneering study on over 3,000 coronary heart patients post-bypass surgery, that studied the relationship between the areas where they resided and their survival rates after the operation. The study reveals that patients who resided in greener areas had an 7% lower mortality rate on average than those who lived in a relatively non-green environment. This is based on the hypothesis that living in a green environment meant better air quality and more engagement in physical activity.

Article: “Existing drugs may hinder the development of bone metastasis in breast cancer patients”

April 2, 2024 – from Medical Xpress
Using a combination of two existing medications, Tel Aviv University researchers have developed a new strategy to combat the development of bone metastasis, a common occurrence with breast cancer. Their approach disrupts communication between cancer cells and healthy cells, thereby reducing metastases. The therapy's advantage lies in using readily available drugs. Preliminary observations have shown improved survival rates in mice, further clinical trials will determine effectiveness and safety for humans.

Article: “Dolphin communication affected by boat noise”

April 1, 2024 – from Israel 21c
A research study by the University of Haifa and the Underwater Acoustic and Navigation Laboratory utilized acoustic studies of dolphin whistles and analyzed the data with deep-learning AI software, to confirm that noises from ships and other maritime traffic significantly alter the vocal behavior and communication patterns of dolphins. While the meaning of the altered communication patterns is still being studied, scientist believe it very likely relates to stress or distress responses.

Article: “Do viruses have consciousness?”

March 28, 2024 – from Tel Aviv University
Scientists at Tel Aviv University have uncovered the complex decision-making process used by bacteriophages or phages (viruses that invade bacteria). They found that after invasion, if a phage senses other phages nearby, it chooses to remain dormant; whereas if it does not sense other phages, it instead replicates and kills the host. This study has several potential applications like alleviating the effects of diseases like cholera by using phages as antibiotics alternatives to pathogenic bacteria and , with further research, gaining better insight into the behavior of human-infecting viruses.

Article: “Israeli tech startups raise $1.6 billion, in first sign of recovery from war toll”

March 28, 2024 – from The Times of Israel
Israeli tech startups have raised $1.6 billion in the first quarter of 2024. The number of deals increased by 35% from the previous quarter, with larger deals dominating, particularly in cyber startups, which secured $620 million in funds. This symbolizes a significant vote of confidence by investors in Israeli entrepreneurs and raises hopes of continued recovery from the fundraising drought caused by the Israel-Hamas war.

Article: “A Hundred Million Suns: The Most Complete Portrait of a Supernova”

March 27, 2024 – from Weizmann Wonder Wander
Weizmann Institute researchers were able to capitalize on a unique opportunity to observe a supernova (exploding star) in real-time and gather crucial data in the process. With initial analysis suggesting that the missing mass formed a black hole post-explosion, the study offers new insights into stellar life cycles and the formation of new cosmic entities. The study signifies a great stride in understanding the rare phenomenon of supernovae and can potentially enhance our understanding of the universe's origins.

Article: “COVID protocols pave new way of detecting common congenital viral infection in newborns”

March 27, 2024 – from The Times of Israel
Inspired by COVID-19 protocols, researchers have successfully used pooled saliva PCR testing to collectively screen large numbers of newborn babies for congenital cytomegalovirus (cCMV), which is a very common yet under-screened viral infection that, until now, could only be tested for using individual saliva and urine samples. The new method is faster, cost-effective, reduces false positives and enhances early detection and intervention which is crucial for managing cCMV-related complications.

Article: “Advancing the Field of Environmental Monitoring”

March 25, 2024 – from Bar-Ilan University
A study by Bar-Ilan University researchers proposes the use of their newly developed device to detect low concentrations of pharmaceutical waste and contaminants in water, particularly the highly toxic piperidine which poses significant health risks to humans and animals. The dime-sized device uses a nano-patterned metallic surface and optical detection methods to detect piperdine even at very low concentrations. The findings of this study can revolutionize environmental waste and contaminant monitoring.