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Hebrew University, German and British researchers develop means to help stress sufferers

tein is produced, thereby preventing the "extreme" reaction associated with traumatic memory-inducing stimuli.

The researchers from the Hebrew University involved in the project are Prof. Hermona Soreq, who heads the Eric Roland Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases, plus Dr. Binyamin Hochner and graduate students Noa Farchi and Ella H. Sklan. Also participating was Dr. Shai Shoham of Herzog Hospital in Jerusalem. From the Max Planck Institute, the participants are Prof. Joachim Spiess, Dr. Thomas Blank and Ph.D. students Ingrid Nijholt and Min-Jeong Kye. Involved with the work also were Birgit Verbeure and David Owen of the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, England.

The object of the research is not to erase memory, emphasizes Prof. Soreq since memory of dangerous situations or circumstances can be beneficial for survival but rather to develop a drug that would block the harmful reactions of those suffering from recurring stress symptoms due to lingering memories of past traumatic experiences. Until now there has been no drug to treat the core of the post-stress problem, but rather only its symptoms.

Working towards creating a commercial medicinal product based on the research is Ester Neuroscience, a startup company in Tel Aviv, with backing from the Medica Venture Capital Fund, by agreement with the Yissum Research Development Company of the Hebrew University.


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Contact: Jerry Barach
jerryb@savion.huji.ac.il
972-2-588-2904
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
11-Dec-2003


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