Shimon Peres to raise funds for Israeli brain research

By GALI WEINREB/GLOBES
May 23, 2011 22:46

Nonprofit organization will seek to shift the emphasis of research in Israel toward brain research through conventions, steering committees and, most importantly, by raising money.

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President Shimon Peres

Shimon Peres 311. (photo credit:Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)

President Shimon Peres announced Monday at the ILSI-Biomed Conference 2011 he will set up a nonprofit organization to support brain research in Israel.

It will be headed by Dr. Rafi Gidron, a cofounder of Chromatis Networks, which was sold to Lucent for over $4 billion in 2000. He is currently involved in volunteer work and invests in clean-tech companies through his firm Precede Technologies.

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The aim of the proposed NPO will be to shift the emphasis of research in Israel toward brain research through conventions, steering committees and, most importantly, by raising money.

The NPO will identify the most interesting and important subfields in brain research where Israel has the greatest comparative advantage and raise capital to support basic and applied research in them via a range of research institutes, NPOs and possibly young commercial companies.

“We intend to replicate our achievements in nanotechnology in neuro-technology, but the scale will be much greater and more impressive,” Peres told Globes.

“Israel lives on its brain,” he said. “This is not a onetime thing; it is something renewed constantly and ever more powerfully. We’re now embarking on the fourth revolution. The first were the agricultural, industrial and information revolutions, and now comes the revolution of the brain. This is a problem that Israel devotes itself to solving as quickly as possible and as strongly as possible.”

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