Unveiling Hebrew University’s Top 7 Discoveries of 2023

In a year overshadowed by national and regional conflicts, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem stands out with exceptional research contributions. Amid the enduring spirit of Israeli academia and technology, our researchers consistently achieve groundbreaking discoveries that bring hope and progress. In this article, we proudly showcase seven standout findings, emphasizing the positive impact of our researchers’ dedication to advancing knowledge.

World's First Saliva-Based Pregnancy Test 

Salignostics, an Israeli start-up established in 2017, was announced by Time Magazine that their innovation, the Salistick is one of the best inventions of 2023. Why? This product is the world’s first saliva-based pregnancy test changing healthcare for women and accessibility (not to mention also comfort!). Led by Prof. Aharon Palmon and Dr. Omer Deutsch, the team innovates to make the pregnancy testing experience more comfortable for expectant mothers.

Prof. Aaron Palmon with his company’s product, Salistick, in a Superdrug store in London. 

HUJI’s Supersonic Cracks

Prof. Jay Fineberg of the Racah Institute of Physics at Hebrew University’s Faculty of Sciences has revealed that cracks in certain materials can spread faster than the speed of sound. This discovery sheds light on the critical role of cracks in material strength, creating shock waves within the material.

Dead Sea Swords

In collaboration with Ariel University, our archaeologists uncovered four remarkably well-preserved swords from the first to the third centuries A.D. These swords, found in the Judean Desert, provide a fascinating glimpse into the history of Jewish rebels during Roman rule.

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The secret is in the crust.

In Crust We Trust

Prof. Oren Tirosh and the Meat Crust research team have developed a unique antioxidant crust for fried meat, protecting against lipid peroxidation and extending product shelf life. This cost-effective solution is a game-changer in non-microbial meat product quality.

Wonder Veggies

Wonder Veggies, established in 2022, has pioneered a technology to naturally grow probiotic vegetables and fruits. Prof. Oded Shoseyov and Prof. Betty Schwartz, leading experts at Hebrew University, are spearheading this venture, offering a groundbreaking approach to combining fresh vegetables with probiotics. 

Prof. Oded Shoseyov, the visionary behind Wonder Veggies

Wilk incorporate essential components of breast milk into baby formula

Wilk’s Breast Milk Innovation

Wilk, a leading company in cultured breast milk, established by the brilliance of Professor Nurit Argov, achieved a scientific breakthrough by incorporating essential components of breast milk into baby formula. Their innovation involves the development of immortal epithelial cells, promising to transform the global dairy industry.

Autism Research Breakthrough

Approximately 1 in 100 children is affected by autism spectrum disorders (ASD), a diverse group of conditions linked to brain development that influence how individuals perceive and interact socially with others. Prof. Haitham Amal and his team from the School of Pharmacy at HUJI’s Faculty of Medicine have identified a direct link between nitric oxide levels in the brain and autism indicators. This breakthrough, published in the first half of 2023, not only provides new insights into potential treatments for ASD but also holds implications for other neurological and psychiatric conditions.

Prof. Haitham Amal

We extend our sincere thanks to Yissum, the Tech Transfer and Research Development Company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, for their invaluable contribution to this article. Their commitment to applying research findings to real-world solutions has played a pivotal role in bringing these discoveries to light. 

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