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February 8, 2019

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, FEBRUARY 8, 2019 PAGE 3A The Center for Israel Edu- cation and Emory's Institute for the Study of Modern Israel will hold the 18th annual CIE/ ISMI Educator Enrichment Workshop on Modern Israel from June 23 to 27 in Atlanta. The highly acclaimed work- shop, underwritten by the AVI CHAI Foundation, will bring together dozens of educators to deepen their understanding of Israel's history, politics, economy and culture and enhance their classroom skills. Special emphasis will be placed on sharing best practices for engaging sec- ond- to 12th-graders about modern Israel. Alumni of the workshop become part of a national network of some 1,000 Is- rael educators who can foster generations of students with an appreciation of the signifi- cance of Zionism and Israel's complex yet central role in Jewish and Middle Eastern history. "I'm just in awe of CIE and everything you offer," said two-time workshop partici- pant Julie Schimmel from the PressmanAcademy of Temple BethAm in LosAngeles."All of the professionals and teachers are awesome. I would go every year if could." Experienced curriculum, academic and content special- ists will lead the workshop ses- sions, which each year evolve to meet educators' needs for sources, context, classroom activities and lesson planning. Each of the five days will be packed with content and cur- riculum development while providing time for networking and reflection on the ideas and information being taught. The topics covered will in- clude the biblical connection of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel; modern Jew- ish history; the origins and development of modern Zion- ism; Israeli foreign policy; the Arab-Israeli conflict; Israel's political system; Israeli music and literature; Israel's thriv- ing economy; the U.S.-Israel relationship; Israel's role in regional and international politics; and issues confront- ing ayoung, maturing nation, such as the balance of civil liberties and national security and the place of religion in society. Sessions on pedagogy inevitably enrich participants' ability to incorporate new information into their work. Participants work with experienced advisers who guide them in refining ex- isting lessons and creating new ones. Workshop participants last year came from 13 states, the District of Columbia, three Canadian provinces and Mexico City. The past 17 years, CIE programs, including the weeklong workshop, have drawn more than 2,500 educa- tors representing more than 400 day schools, synagogues and other organizations from Nor th America, Israel and the United Kingdom. "Participants broaden their personal knowledge while bolstering their professional competencies. That is a win- ning combination in any field of endeavor," said Professor Ken Stein, the founding di- rector of CIE and ISMI and the originator of the Israel enrichment workshops some two decades ago. Applications are due May 11 but are accepted on a roll- ing basis. Institutions are encouraged to send cohorts of two or more educators. While half the slots are reserved for Jewish day school educators, theworkshop embraces teach- Ken Stein, president of the Center for Israel Education, helps educators get some feet-on experience with Israel's geography. ers and staffers from Jewish organizations who work with teens and young adults. Par- ticipants need not be Jewish or speak Hebrew. The application fee is $150. Participants cover their own travel expenses to the Atlanta conference but are eligible for a stipend of up to $250 each for those costs. Kosher meals, accommodations and a wealth of resource materials are included. Learn more about the five-day workshop and apply to participate at workshop. For more infor- mation, contact workshop coordinator Heather Waters at See what previous partici- pants say about the workshop at lmmunovative lab technicians at work in Jerusalem. By Brian Blum (ISRAEL21c)--Ten years ago, Dr. Michael Har-Noy, founder and CEO of a Jerusa- lem-based startup developing an immunotherapy treatment that could potentially cure cancer, lamented that the fight against the dreaded dis- ease"is a battle we are losing." Today, Har-Noy's company is getting closer to turning the tide. In the past decade, Im- munovative Therapies has conducted dozens of clinical trials, opened branches in California, Arizona and Thai- land, and raised $35 million. But the biggest boost came from the publicity surround- ing immunotherapy pioneer Jim Allison, who won this year's Nobel Prize in chem- istry. Ten years ago, "We couldn't get a venture capitalist to open a business plan if they saw the words 'immunother- apy.' They'd say, 'That doesn't work in cancer,'" Har-Noy tells ISRAEL21c. Following Allison's work that proved immunothera- py's efficacy, "anyone with 'immune' in their name is now able to raise funds," Har-Noy says. Indeed, consulting firm Transparency Market Re- search predicts that the By Yori Yalon (Israel Hayom via JNS)-- Birthright Israel reached a new milestone in 2018, with a record 48,000 participants from around abroad and 8,300 Israelis. Birthright Israel, also known as Taglit in Hebrew, brings Jewish youths from around the world to Israel on a 10-day tour free of charge. The tour is aimed at foster- ing a bond with the Jewish state and increasing aware- ness of Jewish identity. A number of Israeli students and soldiers usually join each group for a portion of the tour. Since the launch of the ini- tiative in 1999, some 650,000 young Jews from 67 countries have participated in various Taglit-Birthright tours. Birthright Israel also noted Thursday that the number of participants in 2018 was higher than in 2017. "As anticipated, 2018 saw a record volume of partici- pants," said Birthright Israel CEO Gidi Mark. "The project continues to excite young Jews around the world and participants say the tours are extremely meaningful." Dr. Miriam and Sheldon Adelson, the project's largest donors, have donated hun- dreds of millions of dollars to Taglit-Birthright so far. Birthright Israel recently announced a new age cat- egory for the first time since the organization's founding, offering a limited number of Birthright Israel trip options for 27- to 32-year-olds. It also sponsors trips for adults with special needs. Dr. Miriam Adelson is the publisher of Israel Hayom. The Adelson family owns the company that is the primary shareholder in Israel Hayom. global marketvalue of cancer immunotherapy drugs will reach $124 billion by 2024. Is the excitement warrant- ed? After all, science is filled with promising approaches that don't pan out in the end. In the case of immuno- therapy, the answer seems to be yes. Immunotherapy is the only current mode of treatment that could actually cure cancer, Har-Noy says. Unlike chemotherapy, which as its name implies uses noxious chemicals to kill cancer cells (along with a lot of healthy ones), immu- notherapy enlists the body's own immune system to do the heavy lifting. Moreover, while chemo- therapy is often effective, it's not always permanent. If even a single cancer cell survives, it can begin to replicate and start the process of tumor- building all over again. The goal with immuno- therapy is to "train" the im- mune system to hunt down and destroy every last cancer cell, including those in meta- static tumors resistant to chemotherapy. However, today's immu- notherapy drugs "only work in 20 percent of patients," Har-Noy says. "And they're still toxic. That means 80 percent of patients get no clinical benefit but they .get the toxicity." Nor does immunotherapy work in some cancers - in- cluding colorectai cancer, which is among the three biggest killers worldwide. That's one reason Immu- novative is focusing first on tackling bowel, colon and liver cancers. There are relatively few drugs to treat colorectal can- cer and "the ones that exist are relatively ineffective, only extending life by a matter of months, not years," explains Har-Noy. Immune cells from a healthy donor The Immunovative process starts by collecting immune cells from a normal, healthy donor. There's no need to "match" the donor cells to the recipient. Immunovative technicians purify and culture the donor's healthy T-cells in a bioreac- tor, which causes them to multiply and activate without any genetic engineering or manipulation. Immunova- tion has a patent on the new immune cells, which it calls AlloStim. The AlloStirn cells are next injected into the cancer patient. While the body will reject these alien cells, sub- sequent injections lead the patient to develop immunity to the foreign ceils and to create more of a particular type of immune cell called "memory Thl," which is nor- mally suppressed in cancer patients. The final step is injection of AlloStim intravenously. The body's new abundance of Thl cells rush to the tumors and, in conjunction with existing "natural killer" cells, begin decimating the tumors. As more AlloStim is injected, the body creates its own tumor- specific Thl immune ceils, essentially vaccinating itself against the can er. The AlloStim process also "teaches" the immune system to seek out similar cancerous tumors throughoutthe body. This means it will spring into action any time it detects the same type of cance, even years after treatment. One donor can potentially produce enough cells to treat up to 1,000 patients, making the resulting drug affordable even to economically disad- vantaged patients. In addition to AlloStim, Har-Noy and his team are working on a cancer vaccine called CryoVax that combines AlloStim with cryoablation (a process where a tumor is killed inside the body using extreme cold) for tumors that resist initial treatment, as well as a personalized cancer vaccine dubbed AlloVax. Dr. Michael Har-Noy, founder of Immunovative Therapies. In addition to cancer, Immunovative's treatment is now being tested on five HIV-positive patients. While the clinical trial is small, "the results are very promising," Har-Noy says. Do no harm Har-Noy became interested in the immunology of cancer while in medical school, when he saw patients getting chemotherapy and doctors spending a lot of their time treating the side effects of the chemo. Seeing patients suffer so horribly didn't square with his understanding of the Hip- pocratic Oath of physicians to "do no harm." Science understands how the immune system works with certain viruses and bacteria. "So I thought if we could harness and control it, why not with cancer, too?" he wondered. "That became my life's work." Har-Noy immigrated to Israel in 2003, and launched Immunovative in 2004 at Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem. A $300,000 grant from Israel's Chief Scientist allowed Har-Noy to do trials on monkeys. In 2009, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave Immunovative permis- Cancer on page 15A