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Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology

Where Science Meets Society

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Six University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign faculty members have been elected 2014 fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, including Brendan A. Harley and Phillip A. Newmark of the IGB. Placid M. Ferreira, Joseph W. Lyding, Dan Roth and William H. Sanders were also elected.

The Illinois researchers are among the 401 new fellows chosen for their efforts to advance science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished. The new fellows will be honored at the AAAS annual meeting in February 2015.

“These are extraordinary faculty members who are making great contributions in their fields. They are innovators and educators who are committed to addressing the grand challenges of our society. They are prime examples of the scholarship, ingenuity and quality teaching that are Illinois hallmarks,” said Ilesanmi Adesida, the vice chancellor for academic affairs and provost of the Urbana-Champaign campus.

Brendan A. Harley, a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, was elected for outstanding contributions to the fields of biomaterials and tissue engineering. Harley’s research focuses on developing advanced biomaterials that replicate the dynamic, spatially varying environments found in the body. Harley and his group are creating biomaterials to regenerate musculoskeletal tissues after injury and to study the onset, growth and treatment of diseases such as cancer.

Harley earned his Sc.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2006 and joined the Illinois faculty in 2008. Harley is a core faculty member at the Institute for Genomic Biology and is affiliated with the departments of bioengineering and of materials science and engineering, and the Micro and Nanotechnology Laboratory at Illinois.

Phillip A. Newmark, a professor of cell and developmental biology, was cited for his work in the field of developmental biology, with particular emphasis on regeneration and germ cell development in flatworms. Flatworms can regenerate from just a small sample of tissue, and Newmark studies how their stem cells contribute to regeneration and tissue maintenance.

Newmark received his Ph.D. in 1994 from the University of Colorado at Boulder and joined the Illinois faculty in 2001. He is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigor, and the recipient of a CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation, a Damon Runyon Scholar Award winner from the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, and has been named a University Scholar.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world’s largest general scientific society, was founded in 1848. Fellows are chosen for their outstanding contributions to the field, a tradition since 1874.

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