One of Israel’s most prestigious universities has awarded honourary doctorates to two “pioneering” British scientists.

Professor Colin Ratledge and Professor from University College London (UCL) and Dame Carol Robinson, who was the first female Professor of Chemistry at both Oxford and Cambridge, were honoured by Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.

Ratledge is a world authority on the production of single cell oils, particularly the production of polyunsaturated fats by yeast, fungi and algae. He has worked extensively on the genetic control of key genes involved in lipid accumulation.

Robinson is renowned for pioneering the use of mass spectrometry as an analytical tool and for her ground-breaking research into the 3D structure of proteins.

The ceremony took place on Tuesday at the university’s Be’er Sheva campus in the south of the country, at the Board of Governors Meeting, with four other foreign nationals also given the honourary accolade.