Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

By Karin Klooseterman

Israel's virus-killer Vecoy gets an outer-space research prize


Vecoy's Eitan Eliram

(Israel21c)-In an upcoming space mission, the Vecoy platform-which tricks viruses into committing suicide-will be tested to see how it works in zero gravity. The Israeli company Vecoy Nanomedicine became a media sensation last year after ISRAEL21c covered the company's virus "decoy" designed to outwit the world's worst viral enemies before they do any damage.

The biomed technology platform tricks a virus into committing suicide, a tactic which could eventually neutralize viral threats like Ebola, hepatitis, HIV and scary chemical and biological warfare.

Now, researchers from the American space and startup community have taken notice. In an upcoming space mission, the Vecoy platform will be tested to see how it works in zero gravity.

Vecoy was selected from 1,200 applicants worldwide and is one of eight startup companies to win the chance to go to space. Vecoy won the second prize given by the Center for Advancement of Science in Space, the non-profit research and development wing of the International Space Station U.S. Laboratory. The research will be done as part of the MassChallenge Startup Accelerator.

Matt Rutherford

Erez Livneh at NASA's Ames Research Base.

The prize also came with a not-so-shabby $45,000, but company strategist Eitan Eliram says the biggest prize is, obviously, the flight to space.

"It is amazing for us, and we are proud to be a small Israeli company going into space. And we want to share our pride with the ecosystem in Israel," Eliram says.

Future arsenal against biological warfare

Prior to joining Vecoy over the last year, Eliram attended Singularity University, a multinational program based at NASA's Ames Research Base in California-the same program that inspired Vecoy's founder Erez Livneh to create the company.

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