E-Progress Report of The Hormel Institute


Congratulations to Dr. Yibin Deng, leader of the Cell Death & Cancer Genetics research section at The Hormel Institute, University of Minnesota, and his team for their recent findings regarding possible treatment options for prostate cancer. The team was recently published in the open-access journal EBioMedicine with their findings of how to possibly suppress prostate tumor growth. Prostate cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in men after lung cancer in the United States. Our scientists are dedicated to erasing such statistics and know that the only way is through research and collaborations. The new Live Learning Center (LLC) at The Hormel Institute, still under construction, will advance knowledge about cancer through worldwide research collaborations. You too can play a role in accelerating answers to cancers by supporting the ongoing campaign. We have under $270,000 left to raise from the $4.5 million fundraising goal. Please join with us as we seek to improve health. Consider a tax-deductible gift to further the LLC, our research and a healthier world through your important support.

Thank you for “Coming Together for the Cure.”

In friendship,

Zigang Dong, M.D., Dr. P.H.
Executive Director


Dr. Yibin Deng leads team with new work published in ‘EBioMedicine’

Findings from recent preclinical studies at The Hormel Institute offer new therapeutic strategies for treating aggressive, lethal forms of prostate cancer. Dr. Yibin Deng, leader of the Cell Death & Cancer Genetics research section at The Hormel Institute, and his team were recently published in the open-access journal EBioMedicine. Their studies found that by co-targeting hexokinase 2 (HK2)-mediated aerobic glycolysis with 2-deoxyglucose (2-DG) and ULK1-dependent autophagy with chloroquine (CQ) tumor growth is suppressed. For more, read “Institute scientists make strides with prostate cancer research.

Internal seminar series at Institute features updates on cancer research projects

Recent internal seminars at The Hormel Institute featured a variety of research projects. Dr. Luke Hoeppner, leader of the Molecular Biology and Translational Cancer Research section at The Hormel Institute, presented Feb. 11 on “Zebrafish Models of Human Disease.” On Feb. 25, The Hormel Institute hosted Dr. Steven P. O’Hara, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, from Mayo Clinic. Dr. O’Hara presented his seminar “The dynamic biliary epithelia: Molecules, pathways, and disease” to the scientists of the Institute. On March 10, Dr. Arsheed Ganaie, researcher in the Molecular Chemoprevention and Therapeutics section led by Dr. Saleem Bhat, presented his work on pancreatic cancer. His presentation was titled, “A Novel KRAS inhibitor for Pancreatic Cancer.” The Hormel Institute’s internal lectures are offered every other week and aimed at generating feedback on projects as well as fostering scientific collaborations.


Austin Community Growth Ventures sponsors Lunch and Learn about commercialization

The Hormel Institute hosted a Commercialization Patent Lecture on March 17. The lecture was provided by the law offices of Fredrickson and Byron, LLP and sponsored by Austin Community Growth Ventures, an endeavor made possible by the Development Corporation of Austin. Kurt Niederluecke and Adam Steinert presented about the general patent process, the types of patents, and the patentability of natural substances used in medical treatments.


The Hormel Institute to host two international cancer conferences

Hundreds of international scientists will travel to Austin this year to strengthen worldwide collaborations and share discoveries in cancer research using The Hormel Institute’s “still under construction” Live Learning Center conference center and auditorium. Executive Director Dr. Zigang Dong is co-chair of two annual and major international research symposiums and he is bringing both to Austin and The Hormel Institute this year. The conferences include The 7th China-U.S. Forum on Frontiers of Cancer Research symposium that will take place June 1-3, coinciding with the Grand Opening of the current building expansion and the International Skin Carcinogenesis Conference scheduled for Sept. 21-24. For more, read the full article in the “Austin Living” magazine here.


“Bowling for the Battle” raises $36,000 for Institute’s prostate cancer research

The hugely popular “Bowling for the Battle” fundraiser in Austin raised both awareness and a generous donation for prostate cancer research at The Hormel Institute, University of Minnesota. A check for $36,176 was presented to leaders of The Hormel Institute from “Bowling for the Battle” organizers including Tom Gillard, Jim Benson, Pat Andreas and Laura Maschka (all from Farmers Insurance), and Jason Maschka. The donation included a $7,500 matching gift by Reichel Foods in Rochester for the March 5 event at Austin’s Echo Lanes bowling alley. For more, read “Annual event raises $36,000 for Institute’s prostate cancer research.


“Paint the Town Pink” raises record-breaking funds for breast cancer research

More than $272,000 was raised in support of cutting-edge breast cancer research at The Hormel Institute, University of Minnesota, through the 6th annual “Paint the Town Pink” fundraising campaign. Event leaders set a goal last year of $200,000 and it was surpassed through multiple towns’ efforts, generous donors and a lot of pink. For more, read the Austin Daily Herald article, “Pink was pretty in 2016; Paint the Town Pink raises $272,000

Annual Ice-fishing event continues to support PTTP

The annual “Fishing for a Cure” ice-fishing event raised a record-breaking donation of over $14,000 for Paint the Town Pink. “Fishing for a Cure” organizers, Glenn Newman and Jim Nelson, presented the donation for The Hormel Institute earlier this month. Since 2009, the ice-fishing event has raised over $66,000 for Paint the Town Pink. To view a photo of the check presentation, please view our Facebook post.


Four Austin science fair projects receive special Institute award

Four students in grades 3-6 received The Hormel Institute’s Outstanding Science Research Award this spring after being selected by Institute scientist judges for doing exceptional work through the Austin Public Schools and Pacelli Catholic Schools annual science fairs. Each student and his/her family and science teacher were invited to take a special tour of The Hormel Institute. Science fair judging is just one of the many ways The Hormel Institute’s supports science education throughout the year, which also includes the annual Sixth Graders Day for hundreds of sixth-graders coming through the Institute for tours and fun science demonstrations. To view a photo of the students, please view our Facebook post.

Institute to host summer expansion open houses

As summer approaches, the public can look forward to opportunities to tour the expansion. The Hormel Institute will offer three open houses this summer. Free tours will take visitors through the new labs and Live Learning Center – including views of the new state-of-the-art auditorium and technology – to get an inside look at the tools used to accelerate cancer research. Open houses will take place from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on June 4, 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. on July 29, and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on July 30.


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For more information about The Hormel Institute, please contact us at: info@hi.umn.edu
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