Israel: Covid-19, vaccination and treatment…



Coronavirus Israel Live: New Cases Hit Lowest Point in Five Weeks

Israel to reopen schools in areas with low COVID infection, high vaccination rates starting Thursday ■ Israel demands negative test for inoculated arrivals

Despite an extensive vaccination campaign, coronavirus cases in Israel remain high and show little sign of decreasing. Israel is exiting its third nationwide lockdown, and has halted inbound and outbound flights. 5,265 Israelis have died so far of the virus.

Meanwhile, Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip await vaccines, though it may take at least a few more months for their campaigns to reach enough members of the population. 1,557 people have died so far in the West Bank, while 531 have died in Gaza.


10:17 A.M. Cases continue to decline, hitting 5-week low

Israel hit the lowest number of new cases in five weeks, according to the Health Ministry’s rolling averages.

On Thursday, the Health Ministry reported 5,540 new cases. Positive results amounted to 7.5 percent of the tests conducted in Israel on Wednesday, reaching 67,808 active cases. The death toll rose to 5,265.

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Issued on: 07/02/2021 – 10:32

Israel has started to ease restrictions nearly six weeks after entering its third nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Some businesses began reopening on Sunday and people are now allowed to move more than a kilometer (half a mile) from their homes. But schools remain shuttered and international flights are severely restricted.

Israel instituted its third national lockdown in late December as new infections spiraled out of control. Israel has recorded over 686,000 cases of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic last year and 5,074 deaths, according to Health Ministry figures.

At the same time, the country has launched a major vaccination campaign. More than 3.4 million Israelis have received the first shot of the Pfizer vaccine, and at least 2 million have received a second dose.




New Israeli drug cured 29 of 30 moderate/serious COVID cases in days — hospital

Medicine developed at Ichilov moderates immune response, helps prevent deadly cytokine storm, researchers say; 29 of 30 phase 1 trial patients left hospital within 3-5 days

5 February 2021, 3:29 pm

A new coronavirus treatment being developed at Tel Aviv’s Ichilov Medical Center has successfully completed phase 1 trials and appears to have helped numerous moderate-to-serious cases of COVID-19 quickly recover from the disease, the hospital said Friday.

Hailing a “huge breakthrough,” the hospital said Prof. Nadir Arber’s EXO-CD24 substance had been administered to 30 patients whose conditions were moderate or worse, and all 30 recovered — 29 of them within three to five days.

The medicine fights the cytokine storm — a potentially lethal immune overreaction to the coronavirus infection that is believed to be responsible for much of the deaths associated with the disease.

It uses exosomes — tiny carrier sacs that shuttle materials between cells — to deliver a protein called CD24 to the lungs, which Arber has spent decades researching.

“This protein is located on the surface of cells and has a well known and important role in regulating the immune system,” said researcher Shiran Shapira of Arber’s lab.

The protein helps calm down the immune system and curb the storm.

“The preparation is inhaled once a day for a few minutes, for five days,” Arber said. “The preparation is directed straight to the heart of the storm — the lungs — so unlike other formulas… which selectively restrain a certain cytokine, or operate widely but cause many serious side effects, EXO-CD24 is administered locally, works broadly and without side effects.”

The medicine will now move on to further trial phases, but hospital officials were already hailing it as a possible game-changer in fighting serious COVID-19 illness.

Ichilov director Roni Gamzu, the former coronavirus czar, said the research “is advanced and sophisticated and may save coronavirus patients. The results of the phase 1 trial are excellent and give us all confidence in the method [Arber] has been researching in his lab for many years.”

He added: “I am proud that at Ichilov we are… possibly bringing a blue and white remedy to a terrible global pandemic.”


Pfizer COVID Vaccines Delivering Promised Rate of Protection, Israeli Data Shows

Statistical model from theoretical physics in Israel finds that 28 days after the second shot the COVID vaccine is 95 percent effective

Asaf Ronel
Published on 06.02.2021

The coronavirus vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech provide those vaccinated with at least a 50 percent protection 10 days after the first shot and is 95 percent effective a week after the second shot, new data from Israel reveals. 

The data from Israel is very similar to the conclusions reached in Pfizer’s own Stage III clinical trials.

 The conclusions from the new study are based on a probabilistic statistical model used to analyze the rates of vaccination and COVID-19 patients in moderate to serious condition – based on a breakdown according to age groups in Israel. The study has not yet undergone peer review.




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