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BIRAX Ageing 2019

The British Council and the British Embassy Israel have given the go-ahead to seven, new, three-year bilateral scientific projects in the field of research on Ageing. The work will be carried out by top institutions in the UK and Israel. The projects will be awarded nearly £2.8 million in total from BIRAX, a £10 million programme to support cutting edge UK-Israeli research.

BIRAX Ageing is expected to play a significant role in addressing the global challenges of ageing. Launched in 2018, it brings together the UK and Israel’s world-class and complementary scientific capabilities for research into, and promotion of, healthy ageing.

Why is ageing research so crucial?

Ageing, and its medical, social and economic implications, are an increasingly urgent global challenge. Ageing is the cause of most chronic diseases and causes the largest portion of disability and mortality. In the UK, the population of people aged over 75 is expected to double over the next 30 years, while in Israel, the 2015 elderly population of 833,000 is expected to double by 2035.

But ageing is not an issue limited only to the UK and Israel. According to the World Health Organisation, the global population of people aged 60+ years is expected to increase from 605 million to two billion between 2000 and 2050, making ageing-related diseases the most pressing health challenge of our time.

BIRAX Ageing will look at the effects of ageing on human health, and the use of precision medicine and big data in ageing research. It brings together scientists from the Tel Aviv University, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Hadassah Medical Centre, Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Centre, University of Oxford, University of Cambridge, King’s College London, University College London, and Queen’s University Belfast.

The projects focus on various aspects of ageing and how it affects diabetes, vascular disease, neuro-degenerative disease such as Multiple Sclerosis, brain imaging, as well as the use of technology for macular disease research. Tel Aviv University is grateful to take a major role in this partnership, leading three of the seven projects selected:

Watch “Aging, Autism & Combating Brain Disease” with Professor Illana Gozes, Professor Emerita of Clinical Biochemistry, TAU’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine: