Budgets for Israeli scientific research must be increased significantly, as the greatest natural resource in the country is its brainpower, said President Shimon Peres on Tuesday during a meeting with three Tel Aviv University scientists whose names were included in Scientific American magazine's 2007 list of 50 scientists around the world who had distinguished themselves. Peres thanked Prof. Eshel Ben-Jacob and Dr. Itay Baruchi (who were selected for their innovative work in brain research) and Prof. Beka Solomon (who had developed a novel therapeutic approach for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease) for their having brought honor to Israel. They in turn presented to Peres a summary of their research work. Peres said that to minimize the brain drain of its best minds, Israel must provide doctoral students and researchers with an appropriate working environment sufficient for their advancement and development. Baruchi, who is only 32, noted that many researchers leave the country because the level of research financing in Israel is extremely low, thus pioneering studies are ultimately carried out abroad. TAU President Prof. Zvi Galil added: "We have the best scientists and students in the world... I hope that the leaders of our country will come to realize that in these bleak times a way must be found to acknowledge [the importance of] higher education, nurture human capital and bring back the scholars who have left the country."