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Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology

Where Science Meets Society

Woese Undergraduate Scholars set for a summer of science

Two of the most basic motivations that drive scientific research—exploration of the unknown and the desire to solve a pressing problem—are represented by this year’s Carl R. Woese undergraduate research scholars. Allison Narlock will spend her summer investigating the mechanics of archaeal cell division; Monika Ziogaite will be working to identify genetic variants that contribute to the metastatic potential of breast cancers.

Drugs reprogram genes in breast tumors to prevent endocrine resistance

Treating breast tumors with two cancer drugs simultaneously may prevent endocrine resistance by attacking the disease along two separate gene pathways, scientists at the University of Illinois found in a new study.

The two drugs used in the study, selinexor and 4-OHT, caused the cancer cells to die and tumors to regress for prolonged periods, said food science and human nutrition professor Zeynep Madak-Erdogan (ONC-PM), the principal investigator on the study.

Fatty acids rewire cells to promote obesity-related breast cancer

Scientists at the University of Illinois have found that free fatty acids in the blood appear to boost proliferation and growth of breast cancer cells. The finding could help explain obese women’s elevated risk of developing breast cancer after menopause.

Cholesterol byproduct hijacks immune cells, lets breast cancer spread

High cholesterol levels have been associated with breast cancer spreading to other sites in the body, but doctors and researchers don't know the cause for the link. A new study by University of Illinois researchers found that the culprit is a byproduct of cholesterol metabolism that acts on specific immune cells so that they facilitate the cancer's spread instead of stopping it.

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