BOG 2016: TAU Launches Yoran Symposium on Personalized Medicine

Academics and business leaders gather to assess the future of health care
19 June 2016
TAU Governor Varda Yoran

The Shalom and Varda Yoran Institute for Human Genome Research held the first Yoran Symposium on Personalized Medicine in association with Goldman Hirsch Partners and Ramot, TAU’s technology-transfer arm. The event took place during the 2016 Board of Governors Meeting.


The day-long A2I – Academy to Industry Crosstalk featured lectures by leading academics, including Prof. Noam Shomron of the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology and Dr. Tami Geiger of the Department of Human Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry at TAU’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine. The symposium, held in the filled-to-capacity Nicholas and Elizabeth Slezak Auditorium at the Sackler Faculty of Medicine, focused on big data, drug repositioning and personalized medicine. Governors from around the world, researchers from highly-acclaimed academic institutions and industry experts from IBM, TEVA, NovellusDx and Genesort engaged in a lively, open discussion of recent developments in personalized medicine.


“The link between academia and industry is very exciting,” Prof. Shomron said after his lecture on the relevance of next-generation genetic sequencing on personalized medicine. “What it means to me is that my findings do not end up only in a publication, but also reach the clinic and help patients. Ramot makes this happen.”

Prof. Noam Shomron addressing the audience


TAU President Joseph Klafter offered opening remarks. “Shalom and Varda Yoran believed they could make an impact through the University with their foundation, with Varda's artwork, and with the Human Genome Institute,” he said. “In the future, physicians will be able to provide more accurate diagnoses, prognoses and treatments – all based on our specific, individual genetic make-ups.


“That future is already here at Tel Aviv University. We believe that Shalom and Varda Yoran Institute for Human Genome Research will be a major player in this revolutionary field.”


Varda Yoran, an acclaimed artist and founder of the Shalom and Varda Yoran Institute of Human Genome Research, spoke to the researchers and industry leaders about her late husband Shalom’s vision for the State of Israel. “My husband Shalom Yoran survived the Holocaust fighting against the Nazis in the forests of Belarus at the age of 17,” she said. “Immediately after the War, he made his way illegally through Europe and the British blockade. He arrived in Tel Aviv in 1946 and began to rebuild his life. He felt honored to personally participate in the security and development of Israel. When he approached TAU almost 30 years ago, he knew exactly what he had in mind: to leave a mark on the past, present and future. 


“The Yoran-Sznycer Research Fund in Jewish History for the research of Jewish history and the Holocaust is about the past. My sculptures on campus are in the present.  And the Institute for the Research of the Human Genome is the future. He certainly bet on the right horse – Tel Aviv University, a true maverick.”



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