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UIC News Tips
University of Illinois at Chicago Office of Public Affairs (MC 288)
601 S. Morgan St., Chicago, IL 60607-7113, (312) 996-3456, www.uic.edu/depts/paff

May 17, 2000 Contact: Amanda Mazur (312) 996-7681; amazur@uic.edu


The University of Illinois at Chicago presented Inventor the Year awards to eight faculty members on Monday, May 15 during TECHDAY 2000.

UIC engages in research that receives approximately $150 million in external funding from federal, industry and other private sponsor sources. This research spawns technical innovations, especially in engineering, pharmacy and medicine, which are transferred directly to the private sector, contributing to the economic development of the state.

"We need a climate, a culture and a way of doing things that nurture and invigorate the inventive and entrepreneurial spirit of our faculty," said UIC Interim Chancellor Sylvia Manning. "We also need to ensure that these entrepreneurs and inventors continue to be faculty. That means looking out above all else for the welfare of their students and protecting the integrity and future productivity of their research."

Awards were presented to the following faculty who embody the combined ideals of academic research and entrepreneurial spirit:

  • David Boyce, professor of transportation and regional science in the UIC College of Engineering, for his work in developing the origin-based network assignment algorithm and software, and in the field of transportation patterns and traffic congestion.
  • Ananda Chakrabarty, distinguished university professor of microbiology and immunology in the UIC College of Medicine, for helping to develop the Pseudomonas cepacia technology, a bacteria that digests crude oil into simpler substances that can serve as food for aquatic life.
  • Thomas De Fanti, professor of electrical engineering and computer science, and Daniel Sandin, professor of art and design, for their co-creation of the Computer Automatic Virtual Environment or CAVE. CAVE technology has helped to launch a wide variety of developments in the virtual reality field throughout the world.
  • Norman Farnsworth, director of the program for collaborative research in the pharmaceutical sciences, for his work in the field of natural products drug discovery, medicinal plant properties and for designing the worldwide computer database NAPRALERT. The NAPRALERT database compiles scientific literature on the safety and efficiency of herbal medicines, plants, marine organisms and fungi.
  • John Pezzuto, associate dean for research and graduate education in the program for collaborative research in the pharmaceutical sciences, for his research in preventing tumor growth and treating malignant melanoma using betulinic acid, and natural products drug discovery.
  • Charles Rhodes, Albert E. Michelson Professor of Physics, for his work in imaging research, particularly in the field of X-ray laser radiation. Rhodes developed an apparatus and method for generating x-radiation from gas clusters for soft and living tissue imaging. This allows high resolution imaging of living cells without the use of destructive or state-altering preparation.
  • Igor Roninson, professor of molecular genetics, for his contributions to understanding and treating cancer. In the last five years alone, Dr. Roninson has had thirteen patents issued to him in the field of molecular genetics.

With 25,000 students, the University of Illinois at Chicago is the largest and most diverse university in the Chicago area. UIC is home to the largest medical school in the United States and is one of only 88 national Research I universities. Located just west of Chicago's Loop, UIC is a vital part of the educational, technological and cultural fabric of the area.

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