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University of Illinois chemistry professor Paul Hergenrother, left, and veterinary clinical medicine professor Timothy Fan tested an anti-cancer compound in pet dogs that will be used in human clinical trials.

Cancer drug first tested in pet dogs begins human trials

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:February 26, 2015

A new drug that prompts cancer cells to self-destruct while sparing healthy cells is now entering phase I clinical trials in humans. The drug, called PAC-1, first showed promise in the treatment of pet dogs with spontaneously occurring cancers, and is still in clinical trials in dogs with osteosarcoma.

Published Date: February 26, 2015


Muskrats in central Illinois are being exposed to toxoplasmosis, a disease spread by cats.

In Illinois, muskrats and minks harbor toxoplasmosis, a cat disease

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:January 28, 2015

A new study of muskrats and minks in central Illinois indicates that toxoplasmosis, a disease spread by cats, is moving rapidly through the landscape and contaminating local waterways.

Published Date: January 28, 2015


An interdisciplinary research team developed a new approach to treating endometriosis. The team includes, clockwise, from back left: molecular and integrative physiology professor Milan Bagchi, chemistry professor John Katzenellenbogen, visiting research scientist Ping Gong, molecular and integrative physiology professor Benita Katzenellenbogen, postdoctoral fellow Yiru Chen, research scientist Yuechao Zhao, and comparative biosciences professor CheMyong Ko.

New drug compounds show promise against endometriosis

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:January 21, 2015

Two new drug compounds – one of which has already proven useful in a mouse model of multiple sclerosis – appear to be effective in treating endometriosis, a disorder that, like MS, is driven by estrogen and inflammation, scientists report in Science Translational Medicine.

Published Date: January 21, 2015


After experiencing power outages during a 2007 ice storm in Springfield, Missouri, Dickerson Park Zoo officials improved their backup power and heating systems to keep animals  like Henry, pictured here -- safe and warm.

Flu at the zoo and other disasters: Experts help animal exhibitors prepare for the worst

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:October 23, 2014

When bad weather strikes or illness invades, zoos and aquariums are among the most vulnerable facilities affected, said University of Illinois veterinarian Yvette Johnson-Walker, a clinical epidemiologist who contributes to emergency response training efforts at animal exhibitor institutions.

Published Date: October 23, 2014


Scientists gear up to fight deadly snake fungal disease

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:July 15, 2014

Researchers have developed a faster and more accurate way to test for infection with Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola, a fungus that is killing snakes in the Midwest and eastern United States. The test also allows scientists to monitor the progression of the infection in living snakes.

Published Date: July 15, 2014