Artificial cornea restores sight

Surgeons at Rambam Medical Center conducted the first implant of a synthetic cornea from Israel’s CorNeat (reported previously). 78-year-old Israeli Arab Jamal from Haifa was able to see clearly immediately after the transplant, for the first time in 10 years.

Groundbreaking heart surgery

Instead of open-heart surgery, doctors at Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center performed the world’s first catheterizations to unblock heart valves, including of a 96-year-old woman. They used the “ShortCut” - a tiny knife inside a catheter, developed together with Israeli startup .

Searching for pancreatic cancer cures

This article describes the work of 3 Israeli scientists who received grants from the Israel Cancer Research Fund to research pancreatic cancer therapies. They include cell profiling to find early-stage markers; how glucose affects resistance; and cancer spreading along nerve fibers.

$1 billion for cancer therapies

Israel’s Biond Biologics (reported previously) has signed an exclusive worldwide license agreement with Sanofi for its innovative cancer therapies. Biond will receive $125 million up-front with more than $1 billion in potential payments. Biond’s plans BND-22 human trials to start mid-2021.

The correct personal treatment for cancer

Israel’s OncoHost (reported previously) has achieved about 90% accuracy in predicting how melanoma and lung cancer patients respond to various therapies. And now Israeli Nobel Prize winner Professor Aaron Ciechanover has joined OncoHost’s scientific advisory board.

Improved diagnosis of heart problems

Researchers at Israel’s Technion Institute have developed a way to detect heart problems based on routine electrocardiography (ECG). The new system demonstrated 96 percent average accuracy in diagnosing the various conditions, compared to 80% for currently available algorithms.

A natural Covid-19 treatment

Israel’s Novel Concepts Medical claims to have developed a combination of natural compounds that significantly decreases the amount of coronavirus spike protein, which binds the virus to the lungs. If its US patent application is approved, it will progress to clinical trials.

An effective anti-Covid nasal spray

The Nitric Oxide Nasal Spray, developed by Israeli-founded, Canada-based SaNOtize (reported previously) has proved 99.9% effective in lab tests by Utah State University’s Antiviral Research Institute. Phase 2 trials continue in Canada and are just beginning in UK hospitals.

Allergies are no problem

Some 100 Israelis with severe allergies are being vaccinated at Israel’s Sheba Medical Center as part of a pilot program.  Previously, those with severe allergies were turned away from health clinics because of the risk of serious reactions, including anaphylactic shock.

Vaccine rollout

2 million+ Israelis have had their first Pfizer vaccination. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was the first of over 110,000 Israelis to receive the second dose. He also announced that Israel could be the first nation to be fully vaccinated. Inoculation of teachers and the over-50s has begun; the over-40s will start shortly.