British Jewry’s links to northern Israel continued last week with the opening of a new centre of personalised medicine in the Galil, named after the late property developer and philanthropist Sir Naim Dangoor.
The pioneering new unit, officially opened in a special ceremony on the Medical School campus in the Galilee city of Safed, will help medics eliminate ineffective treatment methods.
New technology based on genetic mapping now allows researchers and doctors to work out exactly what medicine does and doesn’t work, and in what dose, meaning the days of ‘trail-and-error’ are numbered.
The Dangoor Centre for Personalized Medicine, a partnership with Bar-Ilan University, came about thanks to the estate of Sir Naim, who arrived in Britain in the 1930s.
The son of a former chief rabbi of Baghdad, he studied engineering in London, before returning to Iraq to fight in the army. He later ran the Coca-Cola franchise in the country until anti-Semitic persecution under Saddam Hussein forced his family to flee to London in the 1980s.
“This is another link in the chain that binds the Dangoor and Bar-Ilan families,” University President Rabbi Prof. Daniel Hershkowitz of the centre. “The Dangoor family’s previous support of student scholarships and a Monotheism Centre represent the past and present of our people.”