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The Cancer Center at Illinois (CCIL) unites world-class faculty from diverse disciplines across the university to change how we take on cancer. CCIL has made significant progress in multi-principal investigator activities, cancer funding and faculty hiring in cancer research across the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Recent innovations focus on metastatic breast cancer, cancer cell imaging, and ways to connect those dealing with cancer diagnoses.

Metastatic breast cancer

Illinois researchers have identified a metabolic pathway inhibitor with reduced toxicity that could potentially prevent the development of resistance to metastatic breast cancer treatments, improving treatment outcomes.

Innovative imaging of tumor cells

Cancer surgeons may soon have a better view of tumors during surgery thanks to new imaging agents that can illuminate multiple biomarkers simultaneously. The fluorescent nanoparticles, wrapped in the membranes of red blood cells, target tumors better than current clinically approved dyes and can emit two distinct signals in response to just one beam of surgical light, a feature that could help doctors distinguish tumor borders and identify metastatic cancers.

Providing support and connection

While scientific breakthroughs in cancer treatments are at the forefront of the Cancer Center’s work, providing emotional support is also critical to treatment success. The inaugural Cancer Survivor Summit in June 2023 provided resources and education on advancements in care and diagnosis. The event also allowed attendees to network with others who know what living through a cancer diagnosis is like.

Learn more about the Cancer Center at Illinois.