Daily Israel Report

Israel, Japan Unite For First Time to Study Brain, Stem Cells

For the first time, top Israeli scientists will partner with Japanese scientists to conduct brain and stem cell research.
By Malkah Fleisher
First Publish: 12/28/2009, 10:58 PM / Last Update: 12/28/2009, 11:16 PM

Nissim Benvenisty, Public Library of Science

For the first time, top Israeli scientists will partner with Japanese scientists to conduct brain and stem cell research.

The research conducted over the next three years will be the fruit of a joint effort between Israel's Ministry of Science and Technology and Japan's Science and Technology Agency.

Israel's researchers are representatives of the Weizmann Institute, Haifa's Technion, and Tel Aviv University. Their Japanese counterparts will join them for four brain and stem cell-related research projects – two on the brain, two on stem cells – in which each country will invest $600,000.

"Israel is one of the world's leading countries in stem cell research, which is among the breakthrough fields in the medical world of today," noted Israel's Minister of Science and Technology, Rabbi Prof. Daniel Hershkowitz. "Utilizing stem cells allows us to grow new tissue in place of damaged tissue in any part of the human body, thus drastically reducing the need for organ transplants."

Rabbi Dr. Hershkowitz emphasized that cooperation with Japan will even further increase Israel's recognition as a pioneer in the field of stem cell research.