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New funds to support collaborative projects at the IGB

November 15, 2021

Denise Elser has always believed in using multidisciplinary collaborations to solve important problems. In 2017, she attended an event hosted by Steven Thayer, a Leadership Council member at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, where she first learned about the IGB and was intrigued by the social and ethical implications of advances in genomic sciences. During her subsequent visit in 2019, she was impressed by the different IGB themes and was inspired to help the research endeavors by making a generous contribution to the Director’s Innovation Fund.


November 15, 2021


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Supporting new research areas through seed funds

December 2, 2020

From the beginning, Kim and Robert Benziger shared a desire to spread positivity and to give back to the community so that others would have the same opportunities. In line with their philanthropy, the Benzigers have given a generous contribution to the Director’s Innovation Fund, which provides seed funds for budding IGB research themes.


December 2, 2020


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Seed funds from alumnus furthers cell culture models of neurological diseases

March 3, 2020

Neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis affect millions of people worldwide and yet, there exist no known cures. Multiple sclerosis, a disease that causes deterioration of the nerves due to miscommunication between the brain and body, was of particular interest to Illinois alumnus Scott Fisher. As an alumnus, Fisher had a desire to give back to the university but to also honor his late wife Bonita J. Fisher, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.


March 3, 2020


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Honoring their walk of life through fellowships in genomic biology

February 4, 2020

For Martha Loustaunau, the University of Illinois will always be known as a stop on her walk of life where she met late husband Joaquin Loustaunau, with whom she later shared an interest in genomic biology.

Beginning in the spring, the Drs. Martha Oehmke Loustaunau and Joaquin O. Loustaunau Graduate Travel Fellowship for Computational Genomics will provide professional development support to graduate students in the areas of computational genomics, systems biology, genome technology, and metabolic engineering.


February 4, 2020


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Alumnus funds graduate students researching brain tissue cultures

December 19, 2017

Scott Fisher believes learning how to solve a problem can be as valuable as solving one.

This belief is what drove him to create a fund that will support IGB research in the area of regenerative biology and tissue engineering.

The fund will aid the research needs of graduate students working in this area of study – specifically those who are developing technologies to culture brain tissue to learn about brain cancer, traumatic brain injuries and neurological disorders.


December 19, 2017


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