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Biochemistry professor David Shapiro (center), M.D.-Ph.D student Neal Andruska (left), graduate student Xiaobin Zheng and their colleagues discovered a new mechanism by which estrogen contributes to the pathology of breast cancer.

Scientists discover a new role for estrogen in the pathology of breast cancer

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:September 29, 2014

Biochemistry professor David Shapiro, M.D.-Ph.D student Neal Andruska, graduate student Xiaobin Zheng and their colleagues discovered a new mechanism by which estrogen contributes to the pathology of breast cancer.

Published Date: September 29, 2014


University of Illinois microbiology professor Isaac Cann and his colleagues found bacterial enzymes in the human gut that can rival those of the cow rumen in their ability to break down the plant fiber hemicellulose for biofuels production.

Search for better biofuels microbes leads to the human gut

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:September 23, 2014

Scientists have scoured cow rumens and termite guts for microbes that can efficiently break down plant cell walls for the production of next-generation biofuels, but some of the best microbial candidates actually may reside in the human lower intestine, researchers report.

Published Date: September 23, 2014


University of Illinois animal biology professor Chi-Hing (Christina) Cheng and her colleagues discovered that the proteins that bind to ice crystals inside the bodies of Antarctic fishes to keep the fishes from freezing also prevent the ice from melting at higher temperatures.

Study: Antifreeze proteins in Antarctic fishes prevent freezing...and melting

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:September 22, 2014

Antarctic fishes that manufacture their own “antifreeze” proteins to survive in the icy Southern Ocean also suffer an unfortunate side effect, researchers report: The protein-bound ice crystals that accumulate inside their bodies resist melting even when temperatures warm.

Published Date: September 22, 2014


University of Illinois Beckman Institute postdoctoral researcher Agnieszka Burzynska and her colleagues found that physical activity and sedentary behavior are each associated with specific differences in brain white matter integrity.

Study links physical activity in older adults to brain white-matter integrity

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:September 17, 2014

Like everything else in the body, the white-matter fibers that allow communication between brain regions also decline with age. In a new study, researchers found a strong association between the structural integrity of these white-matter tracts and an older person’s level of daily activity – not just the degree to which he or she engaged in moderate or vigorous exercise, but also whether the person was sedentary the rest of the time.

Published Date: September 17, 2014


Topography of a red blood cell as measured by the SLIM optical technique. Though the cell keeps its shape as it ages, the membrane becomes less flexible.

Banked blood grows stiffer with age, study finds

Author: Liz Ahlberg, Physical Sciences Editor

Published Date:September 5, 2014

It may look like fresh blood and flow like fresh blood, but the longer blood is stored, the less it can carry oxygen into the tiny microcapillaries of the body, says a new study from University of Illinois researchers.

Published Date: September 5, 2014


Andrew Greenlee, a professor of urban and regional planning, is co-leading a project that re-examines how communities near polluted waterways cope with environmental disruptions.

Study focuses on communities near polluted waterways

Author: Dusty Rhodes

Published Date:September 2, 2014

There’s no such thing as a good place to have a natural disaster, nor has there ever been an appropriate site to release toxic pollutants. But scientists have long recognized that some areas can handle such catastrophes better than others. As early as the 1970s, they used socioeconomic data from the U.S. Census to develop a tool called the Social Vulnerability Index, known as SoVI, to gauge the likely resilience of different communities.

Published Date: September 2, 2014