Beersheba's Ben-Gurion University of the Negev brought together more than 50 of its scientists in a task force to tackle the effects of coronavirus, the university said. As the researchers gathered, the university announced that it would be setting aside resources to bring the most promising ideas to fruition. "It is our moral obligation to contribute to coping with this pandemic," President Daniel Chamovitz wrote in the letter urging all BGU researchers to join the task force.Israeli scientists are already hard at work on a vaccine for COVID-19, but the task force at BGU was not limited to virology. Public health, public policy, engineering and information systems, as well as economic, psychological, technological, tourism and educational challenges were all among the issues addressed by the team.More than a dozen ideas were raised by faculty members at the preliminary meeting, with researchers breaking off into working groups to explore avenues of research, some joining in via video-link from self-quarantine. In some cases existing projects were repurposed, while others worked up novel ideas and new collaborations. "Since the outbreak of this coronavirus, it has become an international crisis that affects individuals, families, communities and countries around the world," Chamovitz wrote. "I am turning to you, our researchers, to make the coronavirus crisis and its repercussions your top priority, to be creative and practical in order to achieve significant contributions to the national and international challenges that stand before us." BGU is not the only Israeli university that is pulling together teams to search for a vaccine or treatment for coronavirus. The Jerusalem Post last month wrote about work being done at MIGAL to alter a known bird flu vaccine to effectively treat the novel coronavirus. In addition, there are reports of studies at Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.