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Scientist
1559
The Weizmann Institute is actively seeking a company interested in commercializing a novel technology that reduces sulfur content in refined fuels. Fossil fuels sources such as oil, coal, natural gas, shales and others contain varying amounts of sulfur compounds. As world reserves of high quality...

The Weizmann Institute is actively seeking a company interested in commercializing a novel technology that reduces sulfur content in refined fuels. Fossil fuels sources such as oil, coal, natural gas, shales and others contain varying amounts of sulfur compounds. As world reserves of high quality fossil fuels diminish and regulatory standards tighten on reduced levels of sulfur containing emissions, the need for effective methods for removal of refractory sulfides from refined fuels arises.

This invention makes use of a catalytic reaction to remove refractory sulfides from refined fuels thereby enabling the reduction and removal of sulfides. The catalyst is then purified by aerobic oxidation (low temperature combustion) and reused.

Applications


  • Desulfurization of fuels in oil refineries - useful for deep desulfurization of fuels containing relatively small amounts of organic sulfur compounds.

Advantages


  • The process does not require high pressure hydrogen and can be carried out at low temperature.

  • The process complements present HDS technology tp remove refractory sulfides.

  • Catalyst recovery and recycle is carried out by low temperature pyrolysis.

  • No need for additional separation or adsorption processes.

  • No need for additional fuel drying steps.


Technology's Essence


The invention relates to a method for removing heteroaromatic, refractory sulfides down to sub-ppm levels from refined fuels such as gasoline, diesel oil and kerosene. The process uses a heterogeneous catalyst that reacts with the refractory sulfides and oligomerizes or polymerizes them to insoluble polymers that are adsorbed on the catalyst. After use, the catalyst is recovered and purified by low temperature aerobic total oxidation (combustion) reused. This process completes desulfurization of fuels in oil refineries.

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  • Prof. Ronny Neumann
1610
A novel method for increasing Insulin content in pancreatic beta cells. In healthy individuals, Insulin is produced by beta cells of the pancreas. In people with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM), these cells do not produce enough Insulin to effectively fine-tune blood sugar levels. In the US alone...

A novel method for increasing Insulin content in pancreatic beta cells.

In healthy individuals, Insulin is produced by beta cells of the pancreas. In people with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM), these cells do not produce enough Insulin to effectively fine-tune blood sugar levels. In the US alone there are up to 3 million affected individuals with 30,000 new cases diagnosed each year. Worldwide, T1DM incidence has been increasing in recent years by 2% to 5%. Traditionally treated by multiple daily injections of recombinant Insulin, T1DM management represents a significant burden to both patients and the healthcare system. Recent data estimate that T1DM costs the US ~$15 billion annually in medical costs and lost income. Thus, novel therapeutic approaches to amplify Insulin production in diseased beta cells or to replace them entirely are in great need. The present technology describes a cell-based method to enhance beta cell differentiation and Insulin production by the downregulation of a pancreas-enriched microRNA.

 

Applications


  • Cell replacement therapy: directed differentiation of stem cells towards a beta cell fate followed by transplantation of these engineered cells into patients.
  • These methods can potentially be applied to other Insulin deficiency-related conditions such as diabetes mellitus type 2, metabolic syndrome and obesity.

Advantages


  • Simple and robust method for accelerating beta cell differentiation.
  • Cell base therapy for diabetes.
  • Increasing Insulin level.

Technology's Essence


A research team headed by Dr. Hornstein from the Weizmann Institute has discovered an essential role for microRNA-7 (miR-7), a microRNA that is highly and selectively expressed in the endocrine pancreas, in the regulation of beta cell differentiation. By down-regulating the expression of miR-7, the researchers were able to accelerate beta cell differentiation, and concomitantly to augment their Insulin production rate. The data gained from these studies can be further utilized in cell-based therapy applications to restore Insulin production in damaged beta cells, or alternately to replace these cells with stem cells coaxed to differentiate towards a beta cell fate.

 

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  • Dr. Eran Hornstein
1536
Designer cellulosomes are synthetic multi-enzyme complexes that can degrade cellulosic biomass efficiently and economically. The goal of second generation biofuel production is to efficiently convert agricultural waste, algae and other cellulosic biomass into sugar monomers.   Cellulosic biomass...

Designer cellulosomes are synthetic multi-enzyme complexes that can degrade cellulosic biomass efficiently and economically. The goal of second generation biofuel production is to efficiently convert agricultural waste, algae and other cellulosic biomass into sugar monomers.

 

Cellulosic biomass pretreated (e.g. with acid) under ideal conditions, still requires very high enzyme doses to provide efficient bioconversion.

The cost of enzymes and pretreatment is a major hurdle in the production of low-cost cellulosic biofuel, competitive with that of fossil fuels or ethanol produced from corn or sugarcane.

 

The complex structure of cellulosic materials is built to resist bacterial hydrolytic enzymes. The cooperation of many types of carbohydrate-active enzymes is required for effective degradation. By designing synthetic cellulosomes, researchers at The Weizmann Institute enhance synergy between carbohydrate-active enzymes to achieve remarkable degradation rates. Their discoveries can lead to highly efficient conversion of cellulosic biomass, and thus have a major impact in the field of food production and sustainable energy.

Applications


  • High-yield, cost-effective conversion of plant cell wall biomass into soluble sugars for the food industry and the production of biofuels and biochemicals.

Advantages


  • Bio-engineered cellulosomes exhibit synergistic degradation activity of natural substrates compared to the combined action of the free wild-type enzymes.

Technology's Essence


The invention involves the conversion of enzymes (cellulases and xylanases) from the free mode to the cellulosmal mode by attachment using a recombinant dockerin molecule. The dockerin-bearing enzymes are incorporated into designer cellulosomes by interacting with a matching cohesion-containing chimeric scaffoldin (scaffoldin subunits contain the cohesin modules that incorporate the enzymes into the cellulosome complex via their resident dockerins). This approach has generated over two fold enhancement of synergistic hydrolysis on plant cell wall cellulosic biomass. These results create new possibilities for designing superior enzyme compositions for degradation of complex polysaccharides into simple soluble sugars.

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  • Prof. Edward A. Bayer
1592
Novel genetically modified crops resistant to environmental friendly herbicides.Weeds are considered to be one of the major causes for crop losses by farmers. It is estimated that weeds cause an overall 12% reduction in crop yields or $33 billion in lost crop annually. With the advent of biotechnology...

Novel genetically modified crops resistant to environmental friendly herbicides.Weeds are considered to be one of the major causes for crop losses by farmers. It is estimated that weeds cause an overall 12% reduction in crop yields or $33 billion in lost crop annually. With the advent of biotechnology, several genetically modified (GM) crops were developed that are insect-resistant or herbicide-tolerant - to make pest and weed control easier for farmers. The major trait sought in GM crops is herbicide tolerance as one component of the weed management system. However, use of herbicide resistant crop does not fully protect from weeds, since herbicide-resistant weeds appear and propagate. The appearance of herbicide resistant weeds warrants the development of novel herbicide-tolerant crops. The present technology provides a method for introducing into plants the artificial resistance toward herbicide amino acids, which are not toxic to humans.

Applications


  • Conferring to transgenic plants resistance to the presence of phytotoxic non-protein amino acids.
  • Herbicide tolerance to meta-tyrosine can be expanded into different types of crops such as wheat, cotton, alfalfa, etc.
  • Development of additional non-protein herbicidal amino acids and crops resistant to these compounds.

Advantages


  • Weed control can be performed with non-hazardous, environment-friendly herbicides.
  • Genetically-modified resistant crops enable the use of non-selective herbicides, allowing for more robust weed management.

Technology's Essence


The method is based on incorporation into the plant’s organelles (mitochondria and chloroplast) bacterial aaRS possessing editing activity toward a given toxic amino acid (aaRS in organelles usually lack such activity). As a proof-of-concept, a genetically modified Arabidopsis thaliana was created, capable of growing in the presence of exogenous meta-tyrosine (a known herbicide) at concentrations that have a deleterious effect on unmodified plant. However, the method is not limited to Arabidopsis thaliana or to m-tyr amino acid only.

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  • Prof. Mark Safro
1633
The ErbB family consists of four structurally related receptor tyrosine kinases. Excessive ErbB signaling is associated with enhanced tumorogenesis, and as such serves as a major therapeutic target in a wide array of solid tumor cancers. A member of this family, the human epidermal growth factor...

The ErbB family consists of four structurally related receptor tyrosine kinases. Excessive ErbB signaling is associated with enhanced tumorogenesis, and as such serves as a major therapeutic target in a wide array of solid tumor cancers. A member of this family, the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (ErbB-2/HER2), is overexpressed in a variety of human cancers, including breast and gastric tumors. ErbB-2/HER2 amplification correlates with elevated metastatic activity and poor prognosis. An innovative and highly potent approach for cancer treatment is proposed here, based on delivering novel nucleic acid-based entities called aptamers targeting ErbB-2/HER2. Remarkably, the antitumor effect exerted by the multimeric anti-ErbB-2/HER2 aptamers is twofold stronger than that elicited by currently available antiErbB-2 monocolonal antibodies.

Applications


  • A novel class of molecules for the treatment of human cancers exhibiting excessive ErbB-2/HER2 signaling.
  • Combination with other therapeutic modalities may predictably enhance the antitumor activity of the aptamer.
  • Aptamers may also be harnessed as carrier molecules to deliver toxic loads into cancer cells.

Advantages


  • Unlike traditional methods for producing monoclonal antibodies, no organisms are required for the in vitro selection of oligonucleotides. This facilitates the selection and chemical design process of aptamers.
  • Aptamers are produced chemically in a readily scalable process.
  • Non-immunogenic.
  • Unlike other oligonucleotide-based therapeutics (siRNAs, antisense RNA), aptamer therapeutics can be developed for intracellular as well as extracellular or cell-surface targets.

Technology's Essence


Aptamers are single-stranded oligonucleotides that fold into defined architectures and avidly bind to targets such as proteins, with the same effectiveness and affinity associated with mAbs. Using a novel screening technology the research team has identified a multimeric aptamer with pronounced ErbB-2/HER2 inhibitory activity. Preliminary preclinical experiments show that treatment of gastric tumor-bearing mice with trimeric aptamer resulted in reduced tumor growth that was nearly twofold stronger than that achieved with a monoclonal anti-ErbB-2/HER2 antibody.

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  • Prof. Yosef Yarden
  • Prof. Michael Sela
1657
Bioengineered formatotrophic E.Coli can be utilized to efficiently generate biomass from electricity. A popular direction for cleantech in recent years is that of biorefineries, that use living organisms to supply the human demand for chemical commodities. Electricity is considered to be a potential...

Bioengineered formatotrophic E.Coli can be utilized to efficiently generate biomass from electricity. A popular direction for cleantech in recent years is that of biorefineries, that use living organisms to supply the human demand for chemical commodities. Electricity is considered to be a potential feedstock for biorefineries, with the end products serving as solid or liquid storage of energy.  Such microbial electrosynthesis is highly dependent on mediators to enable electron transfer from an electrode to a living cell. 
Formic acid (formate) is an electron mediator with a number of desired features for microbial electrosynthesis. However, wild-type organisms that can grow on formate are not suitable for industrial use due to slow growth rates and metabolism. 
Researchers at the Weizmann Institute have successfully engineered a formatotrophic E.coli. By combining systematical analysis with computational tools they screened numerous metabolic pathways and identified the optimized metabolic pathway that supports efficient formate-based growth. This innovative method enables the design of industrial strains of bacteria capable of efficient microbial electrosynthesis.

Applications


  • Biofuel and chemical commodities production.

Advantages


  • Efficient and robust storage of electrical energy.
  • Cost effective conversion of C1 compounds into sugars.

Technology's Essence


By engineering E. coli, the ”workhorse” bacteria used in biotechnology and enabling its growth on formate, researches at Dr. Ron Milo’s lab paved the way for efficient microbial electrosynthesis. The Researches started by investigating many metabolic pathways in order to discover how a model organism such as E.coli can be engineered for formatotrophic growth.  estimate which pathway is most suitable to support growth on formate each pathway was examined based on various criteria such as biomass yield, thermodynamic favorability, chemical motive force, kinetics and additional practical challenges. 
One short favorable pathway was consistently identified, that is the reductive glycine pathway. Furthermore.  Researches generated an isolated organism that is able to convert formate to pyruvate or glycerate.


Licensing Status


Pending

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  • Prof. Ron Milo
1568
A new multi-state molecular building block for tomorrow’s electric circuits and memory storage devices was realized. Information technology is the core of many industries today. The main challenge facing this industry is the need for miniaturization, due to an ever increase in information density....

A new multi-state molecular building block for tomorrow’s electric circuits and memory storage devices was realized. Information technology is the core of many industries today. The main challenge facing this industry is the need for miniaturization, due to an ever increase in information density. Molecular information processing and storage is becoming a logical candidate to replace the available methods, by use of molecules as building blocks for “bottom up” approaches. A memory device that exists in multiple stable states with a molecular based assembly was prepared. This can offer new ways in which information is processed (multiple-threads) as well as increasing the information density in random access memory (RAM), storage devices and methods.

Applications


  • Binary and ternary Static Random Access Memory
  • Multi-State Dynamic Random Access Memory

  • Multi-State Flash Memory

  • Multi-State Solid State Drive (SSD)

  • Multi-State Information Processing Units


Advantages


  • Low manufacturing cost

  • Robustness

  • Optical read out allows fast data transfer, and non destructive information access

  • Short response time and fast read-out.

  • System is easy to reset

  • Little material is needed/ environmentally friendly.

  • The system can be integrated with other electronic circuits

  • Multi-valued information storage

  • Increase in information density, with no need for additional spatial requirements.

  • Alternative to silicon  technology


Technology's Essence


Electronically addressable multi-state memory for sequential logic flip-flop, flip-flap-flop circuits, and higher order switchable memory circuits,  can be constructed by materials composed of a molecular based assembly that can exist in multiple states. Since the optical output is a precise function of the applied voltage, multi-valued information can be written on to the assembly by applying specific potential biases. The read and write cycle is completed by monitoring the induced optical changes of the system. This system uses the same electrical inputs as conventional memory devices and uses an optical read-out which is non destructive and fast. The properties of the device can be used to create an apparatus for information storage especially with respect to developing solid-state drives in computers (SSDs).

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  • Prof. Milko E. Van der Boom
1614
A new process for the synthesis of MoS2 nanotubes using lead as a growth promotor.This procedure facilitates the large scale production of MoS2 nanotubes, as previous scaling-up attempts were proven problematic, and can be implemented in production of other INTs, such as NbS2 and TaS2, which is...

A new process for the synthesis of MoS2 nanotubes using lead as a growth promotor.
This procedure facilitates the large scale production of MoS2 nanotubes, as previous scaling-up attempts were proven problematic, and can be implemented in production of other INTs, such as NbS2 and TaS2, which is currently not possible.
In view of the expanding market of composite materials with improved mechanical, electrical and thermal properties, and considering the inherent advantages of production and stability of inorganic nanotubes compared with the organic ones, there is a growing need for implementing new production processes of nanomaterials.

Applications


  • Large scale production of INTs
  • Production of new INTs with new properties

Advantages


  • Scalable synthesis of inorganic nanotubes
  • Production of new INT's not possible so far

Technology's Essence


The invention involves introducing soft metals (Pb, Bi and others- denoted "A") in catalytic amounts to the metal-chalcogenide (denoted "MX2" with X=S, Se) raw material. The soft metals act as growth promotors to the metal-sub-oxide phase, in presence of oxygen (as water vapor or soft-metal-oxide) facilitating the formation of metal-sub-oxide nanowhiskers, which then function as scaffolds for the formation of the desired metal-chalcogenide nanotubes.
The result is formation of MX2 nanotubes containing a minute amount of M-doping and intercalation.
This novel technology entails great potential in the growing market of inorganic nanotubes, with applications in lubrication (oils, automotive, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and more), shock absorption, composites, coatings and their applications in multiple industries, and more.

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  • Prof. Reshef Tenne
1546
Improvement of protein production by modulating the tRNA pool. For maximal heterologous expression of proteins per host cell, the optimal level of expression of genes needs to be addressed. The science and art of expressing a gene from one species in another often amounts to modifying the codons of the...

Improvement of protein production by modulating the tRNA pool. For maximal heterologous expression of proteins per host cell, the optimal level of expression of genes needs to be addressed. The science and art of expressing a gene from one species in another often amounts to modifying the codons of the gene, and supplementing the host with specific tRNAs. Yet the full challenge of heterologous expression is not only to maximize expression per host cell, but also to minimize the burden on the host. The outlined invention describes a universally conserved profile of translation efficiency along mRNAs, based on the adaptation between coding sequences and the tRNA pool, to improve heterologous gene expression and thus protein production.

Applications


  • Improvement of the yield and success rate of recombinant protein production.

Advantages


  • Protein expression levels can be artificially increased
  • Minimization of the burden on the host

Technology's Essence


The translation efficiency profile of a gene is defined, for each codon position, as the estimated availability of the tRNAs that participate in translating that codon. The profile is high at codons that correspond to abundant tRNAs and low at codons that correspond to rare tRNAs. In this invention it is predicted that the first ~30-50 codons of genes appear to be translated with a low efficiency “ramp”, while the last ~50 codons show highest efficiency. The “ramp” serves as a late stage of initiation and is an optimal and robust means to reduce ribosomal traffic jams, thus minimizing occupation of free ribosomes, ribosomal abortions and, ultimately, the cost of protein expression. Implementation of appropriate ramping in heterlogous proteins, given the host?s tRNA pool, might improve the yield of expressed recombinant proteins.

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  • Prof. Yitzhak Pilpel
1596
A beam of light has several properties which can be measured for a variety of applications. The most commonly measured properties of light include Intensity, Color, Phase, and Polarization.In recent years there has been a growing demand to have well-defined optical beams. In order to accomplish this a...

A beam of light has several properties which can be measured for a variety of applications. The most commonly measured properties of light include Intensity, Color, Phase, and Polarization.In recent years there has been a growing demand to have well-defined optical beams. In order to accomplish this a light beam requires fast, accurate, and simple measurement techniques to fully characterize it’s properties.Currently, the ability to measure light polarization exists only qualitatively and at only one specific point in a light beam. Our scientific team has developed a new method to measure changing light polarizations in real-time. 
Our demonstrated system presents a simple way to continuously measure and quantify light polarizations in real-time, throughout the entire length of a light beam. This method has the potential to set a new industry standard, and could lead to a number of applications that were previously not possible.
 

Applications


  • Molecular imaging
  • Medical and industrial lasers
  • Non-destructive testing
  • Analytical chemistry
  • Fiber-optic communications
  • Cryptography
  • Astronomy

Advantages


  • Proved accuracy
  • Simple technique
  • Compact configuration
  • Incorporate into existing equipment
  • Can measure fully polarized, partially polarized, and un-polarized light
  • Two modes of operation:   Space-variant polarization measurements and Wavelength-variant polarization measurements

Technology's Essence


Our polarization measurement technique is based on splitting an input light beam into six parallel beams, each having a predetermined shift in the polarization state with respect to the other beams. The beam components are simultaneously detected using a pixel matrix, such as a CCD camera, to determine their intensity distribution. From this, the polarization state distribution along the cross-section of the input optical beam is determined and we can calculate the Stokes parameters, a set of values which defines polarized light. This allows us to characterize and quantify fully polarized, partially polarized, and un-polarized light at every point in the beam in real-time, with either static or dynamic polarization states. Our method can be applied for two conditions of varying polarizations – changing with position (space-variant) or changing in color (wavelength-variant).

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  • Prof. Nir Davidson
1640
Although early programs targeting MMPs (matrix metalloproteins) were largely unsuccessful due to adverse side effects, they remain a viable and highly desirable therapeutic target. The main obstacle in the attempts to target MMPs is the ability to selectively target individual family members. The...

Although early programs targeting MMPs (matrix metalloproteins) were largely unsuccessful due to adverse side effects, they remain a viable and highly desirable therapeutic target. The main obstacle in the attempts to target MMPs is the ability to selectively target individual family members. The present invention provides highly selective targeted therapy against MMP-7, which is strongly associated with aspects of cancer development such as angiogenesis and metastasis.
The innovative concept leading to this high selectivity is immunization with both a synthetic metal-protein mimicry molecule, previously developed by the present inventors, followed by the metalloenzyme itself (e.g. MMP-7). The resulting antibody exhibits exceptional degree of specificity towards MMP-7 over other MMPs.
The present technology offers an opportunity to re-introduce improved MMP-targeting agents to the cancer therapeutics market, in particular aggressive cancers that face a major unmet medical need. 

Applications


  • Therapy for MMP-7 associated diseases
  • Diagnostic tool for MMP-7 associated diseases

Advantages


  • Highly selective
  • Safe – avoids adverse effects that are associated with broad spectrum MMP inhibitors.
  • Efficient – targeting a physiological active conformation of the enzyme

Technology's Essence


The present technology is based on a previous invention that was developed in Prof. Sagi's lab, of synthetic metal-protein mimicry molecules that mimic the conserved structure of the metalloenzyme catalytic zinc-histidine complex within the active site of each MMP enzyme.
These molecules were shown to be powerful immunogens in the generation of highly selective MMP antibodies since they recognize both electrical and structural determinants residing within the enzyme active site. The potential of this method to successfully generate MMP-targeting therapeutics was shown for MMP-9/2 inhibitory antibodies in mouse models of inflammatory bowel disease.
Prof Sagi and her team now take this invention a step further to achieve even higher specificity. They show that immunizing with the mimicking molecules described above, followed by immunization with the metalloenzyme itself increases selectivity further.   
Implemented for MMP-7-targeting, this approach yielded an antibody with a 5 fold lower Ki towards MMP-7 than towards other MMPs (e.g. MMp-2 and MMP-9).


 

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  • Prof. Irit Sagi
  • Prof. Irit Sagi
1512
Materials with unique optical and magnetic properties for preventing counterfeiting. Product counterfeiting is a worldwide problem; the range of counterfeited goods touches almost all industries, from clothing to pharmaceuticals. It is estimated that counterfeiting is a $600 billion a year business,...

Materials with unique optical and magnetic properties for preventing counterfeiting.

Product counterfeiting is a worldwide problem; the range of counterfeited goods touches almost all industries, from clothing to pharmaceuticals. It is estimated that counterfeiting is a $600 billion a year business, and that counterfeit goods currently account for 5-7% of world trade. For this, companies need strategies that include various layers of security. Counterfeiters have learned to duplicate various types of security measures, so it is important to use a combination of overt and covert techniques simultaneously. The present technology consists of complexes and clusters  with a unique combination of optical and magnetic properties, that may be utilized for product authenticity.

Applications


  • Security 'markers' in documents or product authenticity, in the form of special printing inks or ink-jet applications


Advantages


  • Delayed emissions guarantees low noise level from exogenous fluorescent impurities

  • The clusters are emissive both in solution as well as in the solid state

  • Emissive complexes and clusters are circular polarized and therefore provide an additional layer of genuineness, as the true nature of the markers can only be identified using appropriate filters
  • The high magnetic properties of several of the compounds allows fast automated document screening


Technology's Essence


The outlined technology consists of a series of chiral organic ligands, their metal complexes, and several multi-nuclear clusters. Upon excitation, fluorescence emission can be selected to occur in the visible or the invisible near infrared regions of the spectrum. The spectrum is characterized by several well resolved emission maxima. The unique combination of optical and magnetic properties of these materials makes them promising candidates to serve as security 'markers'.

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  • Prof. Abraham Shanzer
1266
Fast cross-sectioning using multiphoton microscope.  The conventionally used laser-scanning microscopy, confocal and multiphoton microscopy, although being capable of performing optical sectioning, requires a long image acquisition time, tens of milliseconds per section in current commercial systems,...

Fast cross-sectioning using multiphoton microscope.  The conventionally used laser-scanning microscopy, confocal and multiphoton microscopy, although being capable of performing optical sectioning, requires a long image acquisition time, tens of milliseconds per section in current commercial systems, due to the scanning process. The field of confocal microscopy relies on the idea of point-by-point illumination of a sample and use mechanical scanning in order to collect an image. Multiphoton microscopes offer a different mechanism for optical sectioning and the need for rejecting out-of-focus scattering is practically eliminated. However, the process is efficient only when the peak intensity of the illuminating light is high. Thus there is a growing need to facilitate the multiphoton microscopy imaging of a sample by providing a novel illumination configuration and method of its operation.

Depth-resolved microscopy has been, for decades, practically synonymous with laser-scanning microscopy. The technique of the present invention provides for full-frame depth-resolved microscopy (or material processing), using an extremely simple setup as well as standard components, aiming at eliminating mechanical scanning across the sample thus making the image acquisition much faster.

 

Applications


  • Optical system for use in a multi-photon microscope.
  • Material processing, e.g. simultaneous depth-resolved modification of a transparent substrate by femtosecond radiation.

Advantages


  • The present invention provides for fast imaging/processing of a sample without scanning.
  • The temporal profile of the pulse remains unchanged as it propagates through the sample.
  • Single-shot depth resolved microscopy is able to capture extremely rapid dynamics, up to the nanosecond regime.
  • The setup enables full-frame video-rate fluorescence lifetime imaging, simply by gating the CCD intensifier.
  • Enables utilization of structure illumination microscopy.
  • Can be used with practically any multiphoton process.

Technology's Essence


The present invention provides the ability for illuminating a region of a sample with dimensions many orders of magnitude larger than a diffraction-limited spot of the imaging lens arrangement used in the microscope. Using this method, full-frame depth-resolved microscopy can be achieved using an extremely simple setup and standard components. the proposed microscope utilizes a pulse manipulator arrangement including a temporal pulse manipulator configured to define a surface, which extends perpendicular to the optical axis of a microscope in the front focal plane of an imaging lens arrangement, and which is patterned to affect trajectories of light components of the input short pulse impinging onto different points of this surface to direct these light components along different optical paths.

This novel invention is not limited to imaging techniques in general and to microscopy in particular and can also be used for material processing.

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  • Prof. Yaron Silberberg
1407
Thermotolerant photosynthetic organisms endure worsening climate conditions such as increased temperatures and higher levels of CO2. These novel organisms maintain photosynthetic activity and growth under a wide temperature range (15-45oC) as opposed to their wild-type counterparts. Thermotolerant...

Thermotolerant photosynthetic organisms endure worsening climate conditions such as increased temperatures and higher levels of CO2. These novel organisms maintain photosynthetic activity and growth under a wide temperature range (15-45oC) as opposed to their wild-type counterparts.

Thermotolerant organisms also exhibit higher transparency to light. Photosynthetic efficiency is maintained even though they produce and utilize less chlorophyll molecules; therefore less surface area is required for optimal cultivation. Furthermore, increased CO2 concentrations are preferable for thermotolerant organisms’ efficient photosynthesis.

The innovative solution discovered at The Weizmann Institute, involves replacement of 1-2 amino acid residues in a protein motif within the D1 protein subunit of Photosystem II (the protein complex responsible for the conversion of solar energy to a useful form of energy by photosynthesis). Such a solution has the potential to provide platforms for food production and sustainable energy in regions with harsh climate conditions that until today, were deemed unfit for cultivation.

Applications


  • Bacterial platform to produce biomass or materials (e.g. nutraceuticals) in higher temperatures and higher CO2.
  • Food and biofuel production: adaptation of crops to harsh climates.

Advantages


  • Enhanced Thermal stability and plasticity of the modified organisms to a much broader range than observed for the native organisms.
  • Greater Light penetration (e.g. in ponds) without losing photosynthetic efficiency - thermotolerant organisms maintain efficient activity with less chlorophylls thus allowing greater transmission of light to deeper spaces.
  • Thermotolerant organisms withstand high CO2 concentrations.

Technology's Essence


Professor Avigdor Scherz and his team focused on the sequences of the two major protein subunits D1 and D2 found in all purple bacteria PSII reaction centers. Two sites, D1-209 and D1-212, were found to show consistent changes between mesophilic, thermotolerant and thermophilic organisms including cyanobacteria, algae and green plants.

The sites are positioned in a GXXXG-like structural motif (where G denotes small residues such as Gly, Ala, Ser, Cys and Thr) typical of helix-helix interactions. The motif was found at the points of closest contact between the two major protein subunits, D1 and D2. It was shown that mutations in the amino acids within the identified GXXXG-like motif  result in modification of the local flexibility of the reaction center and, consequently, in the induction of thermophilic behavior.

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  • Prof. Avigdor Scherz
1478
Plants can regain enhanced color and aroma via increased production of aromatic amino acids. Researchers at the Weizmann institute of science discovered a key regulatory enzyme of a central metabolic pathway in bacteria and expressed it in plants, obtaining transgenic plants with increased levels of...

Plants can regain enhanced color and aroma via increased production of aromatic amino acids. Researchers at the Weizmann institute of science discovered a key regulatory enzyme of a central metabolic pathway in bacteria and expressed it in plants, obtaining transgenic plants with increased levels of secondary metabolites including higher level of aromatic amino acids.

Farmers and researches have implemented intense selective breeding in flowering plants as an attempt to improve features of decorative flowers, focusing on appearance and shelf life. Consequently, one of the most valuable qualities of the flower such as its scent and had been severely weakened. Traditional breeding is limited in its ability to supply the market demand for creating original or enhanced colors due to genetic requirements.

The innovative method can improve scent and color of decorative flowering plants without interfering with other natural mechanisms of the plant.

Applications


  • Improved esthetical value due to strong color and pleasant scent to ornamental flowers.
  • The color and scent of flowers has an additional eco-systematic role in the reproduction of fruits. Manipulating both color and odor may allow future optimized ability the repulse insects or attracts pollinators. 
  •  This method can be applied not only to enhance naturally existing color but also for the recently commercialized production of new colors of plants. For example flavonoid biosynthesis which was shown to be enhanced by this method was also found to be highly relevant in generating unique flowers colors

Advantages


  • Enhanced fragrance and colors utilizing natural metabolic pathways of flowering plants.
  • No breeding and selection required to enhance flowers’ traits.
  • Endogenous integration between bacteria and plant that involves no interference with other natural mechanisms in the plants.

Technology's Essence


Researches at Prof. Gad Galili’s lab elicited a significant increase in the direct products of the shikimate pathway and in the aromatic amino acid Phenylalanine.

A central regulator in the shikimate pathway is the first committed enzyme of the pathway; 3-deoxy-D-arabino-heptulosonate 7-phosphate synthase (DAHPS). The bacterial DAHPS is feedback inhibited by a separate amino acid. At the core of this technology is the dominant isoform that is the AroG gene which is under the regulation of Phenylalanine and responsible for 80% of the total DAHPS activity.

By expressing a mutant bacterial AroG gene encoding a feedback insensitive DAHPS in transgenic Arabidopsis plants, researchers achieved increased levels of the shikimate direct metabolites, products and aromatic amino acids. Detailed analysis revealed that while no metabolite exhibited decreased levels in the transgenic plants, the levels of shikimate intermediate metabolites, phenylalanine, tryptophan, and a verity of secondary metabolites (such as auxin and hormones conjugates) were increased by the mutant bacterial gene.

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  • Prof. Gad Galili
  • Prof. Asaph Aharoni

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