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Illinois IGB

Paul Hergenrother

15 Years of IGB: SHIELDing the Illinois community against COVID-19

May 11, 2022

During the earliest months of 2020, COVID-19 seemed like an innocuous event that was too geographically distant to affect the Illinois community. In fact, by March 10th there were only 19 confirmed cases. Nevertheless, Nigel Goldenfeld (BCXT leader/GNDP), former Swanlund Endowed Chair and professor of physics, and Sergei Maslov (BCXT/CABBI), a professor of bioengineering and Bliss Faculty Scholar, were worried. The news from China and Italy was concerning and in four days a significant portion of students, faculty, and staff were going to leave for spring break.


May 11, 2022


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Scientists discover how antibiotics penetrate Gram-negative bacterial cell walls

November 8, 2021

Scientists have labored for decades to find antibiotics that work against Gram-negative bacteria, which cause some of the deadliest infections in hospital settings and are most likely to be resistant to treatment with existing antibiotics. In a study reported in the journal Chemical Science, researchers developed a new method to determine how antibiotics with specific chemical properties thread their way through tiny pores in the otherwise impenetrable cell envelopes of Gram-negative bacteria.


November 8, 2021


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10 IGB members receive Presidential Medallion

August 23, 2021

August 23, 2021


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New approach eradicates breast cancer in mice

July 21, 2021

A new approach to treating breast cancer kills 95-100% of cancer cells in mouse models of human estrogen-receptor-positive breast cancers and their metastases in bone, brain, liver and lungs. The newly developed drug, called ErSO, quickly shrinks even large tumors to undetectable levels.

Led by scientists at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, the research team reports the findings in the journal Science Translational Medicine.


July 21, 2021


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Advances in Brain Cancer Research Leads to $3M NCI Award

February 25, 2021

Several Cancer Center at Illinois (CCIL) and IGB members are joining forces with scientists from the Mayo Clinic and Georgetown University on an expansive project targeting improved treatment for glioblastoma (GBM), the most aggressive form of brain cancer. The team, led by Brendan Harley (RBTE leader/EIRH), professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, recently received a $3M grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) for their research which will unite the cell biology, bioengineering, and chemistry behind cancer drug development.


February 25, 2021


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Chancellor, Provost offer reflections on 1 million COVID-19 tests

December 15, 2020

It sometimes seems a million doesn’t command quite the same attention that it used to. It isn’t mathematically special. And in today’s society, it isn’t even unusually large. We now live in a world where the population is measured in billions, economies are scaled in trillions and computer calculations are counted by the quadrillion.

But it takes on a very special significance when you’re talking about looking after the well-being of your community in the middle of a globally devastating pandemic.


December 15, 2020


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Nelson awarded $4.5M to study prevention, treatment of breast cancer

October 30, 2020

Professor of Molecular and Integrative Physiology Erik Nelson (ACPP) has won a $4.5M Era of Hope Scholar Award from the United States Department of Defense (DoD) Breast Cancer Research Program (BCRP). This prestigious award supports individuals early in their careers who have demonstrated significant potential to effect meaningful change in breast cancer research. Recipients of the Era of Hope Scholar Award are leaders and visionaries in their respective field who go beyond conventional thinking to change the current landscape of breast cancer research and therapy.


October 30, 2020


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Cancer compound leads to major licensing deal

October 6, 2020

Researchers affiliated with the Cancer Center at Illinois and the IGB discovered a novel small molecule compound that is now the subject of a new global licensing agreement between the pharmaceutical company Bayer AG and the cancer drug development company Systems Oncology LLC. Systems Oncology originally licensed the IP related to the compound in 2018, and this new deal will now give Bayer the exclusive rights to develop the compound, currently called ERSO, as a cancer therapy.


October 6, 2020


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Dozens of potential new antibiotics discovered with free online app

November 19, 2019

A new web tool speeds the discovery of drugs to kill Gram-negative bacteria, which are responsible for the vast majority of antibiotic-resistant infections and deaths. The tool also offers insights into discrete chemical changes that can convert drugs that kill other bacteria into drugs to fight Gram-negative infections. The team proved the system works by modifying a Gram-positive drug and testing it against three different Gram-negative bacterial culprits in mouse sepsis. The drug was successful against each.


November 19, 2019


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