Tel Aviv University’s Professor Judith Berman

TEL AVIV, Israel -- Tel Aviv University’s Professor Judith Berman was recently named one of 56 new members of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO), a group of more than 1,800 of the most prestigious researchers in Europe and around the world.

Professor Berman of TAU’s George S. Wise Faculty of Life Sciences is being recognized for her outstanding achievements in the study of the growth and evolution of yeast. A fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the American Society for Microbiology, she uses yeasts, especially pathogenic yeasts, to address basic mechanisms of genome change that underlie rapid phenotypic responses to stress.

“We are proud of Professor Berman for being elected to EMBO, which chooses only the most exceptional scientists to join their ranks,”, Vice Dean of TAU’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine Professor Karen Avraham said.  She is also a member of the EMBO Council and Professor Berman’s nominator for EMBO.

“Professor Berman is a highly-appreciated member of the Faculty of Life Sciences at TAU,”, Dean of the Wise Faculty Professor Abdussalam Azem said. “Professor Berman’s election to EMBO is a strong recognition of her research, which is at the forefront of molecular biology of pathogenic yeasts.”

EMBO members actively participate in the execution of the organization’s initiatives by sitting on committees and editorial boards, evaluating applications for EMBO funding, mentoring young scientists and providing suggestions and feedback on activities. They conduct research at the forefront of all life science disciplines, ranging from computational models or analyses of single molecules and cellular mechanics to the study of higher-order systems in development, cognitive neuroscience and evolution.

“It is a great honor to be recognized for my study of pathogenic yeasts of humans and their responses to antifungal drug stress,” Professor Berman says. “These include mitotic defects that cause aneuploidy and cell-to-cell heterogeneity driven by non-genetic mechanisms. We investigate the interplay between chromosome instability, membrane and cell wall dynamics, and intracellular localization of antifungal drugs to better understand processes that modulate the amplitude and diversity of phenotypic responses.”

EMBO will formally welcome its new members and associate members later this year.


The streamlined plane scheduled for commercial use by 2022 is sustainable,

quiet, and emission-free.


Think electric cars are all the rage? How very old-fashioned. At this week’s Paris Air Show, Israeli company Eviation Aircraft unveiled its electric plane, an emission-free, quiet mode of transportation that could greatly benefit the environment.

The streamlined plane, called Alice, can seat nine passengers and is planned to cruise at a speed of 260 knots for a range of up to 650 miles. The all-electric vehicle is meant to reduce operating costs stemming from fuel and oil usage.

The plane is scheduled to undergo flight tests this year and receive certification in 2021, according to a Reuters report, which also quoted Eviation as saying the plane will be available for commercial use in 2022.

Eviation’s first commercial customer is set to be Cape Air, a stateside regional airline, the news agency reported.

“Operating at a fraction of the costs of conventional jetliners, our Alice will redefine how people travel regionally and usher in a new era of flying that is quieter, cleaner, and cost-effective,” Eviation CEO Omer Bar-Yohay was quoted as saying.

According to the International Civil Aviation Organization, 4.3 billion people traveled by air in 2018, a 6.1 percent increase compared to the previous year.  And with airplanes releasing particles and gases such as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons, and lead, their growing use continues to impact the environment, making planet-friendly travel options increasingly important.


Foreign tourists accounted for 49% of the total proceeds, of which 63% came from hotels in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Proceeds rose 7% in Tel Aviv and 10% in Jerusalem. 42% of the proceeds from Israeli vacationers came from hotels in Eilat and at the Dead Sea.

Proceeds totaled NIS 524 million from hotels in Jerusalem and NIS 520 million from hotels in Tel Aviv, of which NIS 361 million came from foreign tourists. Proceeds from hotels in Eilat totaled NIS 435 million, of which NIS 361 million came from Israeli tourists. Proceeds from hotels at the Dead Sea totaled NIS 210 million, and proceeds from hotels in Tiberias totaled NIS 153 million.

Israel had 420 hotels in the first quarter with an aggregate 55,000 rooms, compared with 411 hotels in the first quarter of 2018. Occupancy averaged 64%, the same as in the corresponding quarter last year. Foreign tourist overnights grew by 9%.

The number of jobs in tourist hotels averaged 38,000 a month, down 2.6%, compared with the corresponding period last year.11% of the workers were employed through personnel agencies. The average salary per job for hotel workers was NIS 8,000, NIS 1,000 more on the average than those employed through personnel agencies.

The figures also show that the proceeds per tourist totaled $113 per night. The Central Bureau of Statistics also said that the first quarter of the year usually has the lowest proceeds per night of any time of year.

Although most of the foreign tourists stayed in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, Tiberias also had 22% more foreign tourists in the first quarter than in the first quarter of last year. More Israeli also went to Tiberias: proceeds from Israelis at hotels in Tiberias grew 12% in the first quarter of 2019. Proceeds from Israelis rose 4% in Eilat, but fell 11% at the Dead Sea.


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