Benita S Katzenellenbogen

294 Burrill Hall
Office: (217) 333-9769
Fax: (217) 244-9906

Mail to: Department of Molecular and Integrative Physiology
524 Burrill Hall
407 S. Goodwin Ave
Urbana, IL 61801-3704

Benita S Katzenellenbogen

Swanlund Professor of Molecular and Integrative Physiology
Swanlund Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology

Research Topics

Endocrinology, Genomics, Protein-Nucleic Acid Interactions, Receptor Biochemistry, Regulation of Gene Expression, Reproductive Biology, Signal Transduction


B.A. 1965 City University of New York
M.A. 1966 Harvard University
PhD. 1970 Harvard University
Postdoc. 1970-71 University of Illinois

Regulation of gene expression, signal transduction, and cell proliferation and phenotypic properties by hormones and growth factors; functional analyses of nuclear hormone receptors and their genome-wide activities; mechanisms of hormone and antihormone action in normal and cancer cells; biomarker discovery and cellular changes underlying resistance to therapeutic agents in breast cancer.

We are interested in understanding the biochemistry, physiology, and molecular biology of nuclear hormone (estrogen, progesterone) receptors, intracellular proteins that mediate the biological actions of these hormones in target cells, and the mechanisms by which these proteins regulate gene expression and the growth and functioning of target cells, especially cells of the reproductive system and mammary gland, and of tumors that develop in these tissues. Our studies focus on the characterization of these receptors and their coregulator protein partners; the interaction of receptor agonist versus antagonist ligand complexes with hormone-regulated genes; the interrelationships among hormones, growth factors, and various signal transduction pathways in the regulation of cell proliferation and phenotypic properties of breast cancer cells; and the mechanisms by which antihormones (antiestrogens and antiprogestins) antagonize hormone-dependent gene transcription and cell growth. We are doing genome-wide analyses of receptor and other transcription factor cistromes (chromatin binding sites by ChIP-Seq) and transcriptomes (gene expression, miRNAs, other RNAs by RNA-Seq) and are examining the bidirectional cross-talk between nuclear hormone receptors and cell signaling pathways. Our studies involve detailed biochemical and structure-function analyses of the receptors and coregulators and their gene interactions, and examination of their biological activities in normal and cancer, in particular breast cancer, cells. We have a major interest in hormones and breast cancer and in mechanisms of endocrine sensitivity and resistance to cancer therapies; biomarker discovery and improving cancer treatment effectiveness; and also a strong focus on reproductive biology and the improvement of fertility.


Ernst Oppenheimer Memorial Award of The Endocrine Society for Meritorious Research, 1984
Thomas A. Murphy University Scholar, 1987-1990
MERIT Award from National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute 1991-1999
Faculty Member of the Year Award, University of Illinois College of Medicine, 1994
American Academy of Arts and Sciences, elected Fellow, 1993
Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Scientific Distinction Award, 1996
The Kroc Lectureship, Univ. Texas-Houston Health Science Center and M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, 1998
Jill Rose Award for Breast Cancer Research, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation, 1998
NIEHS Distinguished Lectureship, NIEHS/NIH, 2000 and 2005
President, The Endocrine Society, 2000-2001
Swanlund Professorship, University of Illinois, 2000-present
Professor in the Center for Advanced Studies, University of Illinois, 2000-present
City University of New York Distinguished Alumni Award, 2002
Roy O. Greep Lecture Award, The Endocrine Society, 2006
Laurea ad Honorem (Honorary Degree) from University of Milan, Italy, 2007
Nobel Conference on Estrogen Signaling: From Molecular Insights to Clinical Understanding, Keynote Address, Stockholm, 2008
Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction, 2009
Mentor Award, Women in Endocrinology, 2011

Representative Publications

Zhao, Y., Gong, P., Chen, Y., Nwachukwu, J.C., Srinivasan, S., Ko, C.M., Bagchi, M.K., Taylor, R.N., Korach, K.S., Nettles, K.W., Katzenellenbogen, J.A., and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. Dual Suppression of Estrogenic and Inflammatory Activities for Targeting of Endometriosis. Sci Transl Med. 7(271):271ra9, 2015.PMID: 25609169 [Abstract]

Gong, P., Madak-Erdoğan, Z., Li, J., Cheng, J., Greenlief, C.M., Helferich, W.G., Katzenellenbogen, J.A., and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. Transcriptomic Analysis identifies gene networks regulated by ERα and ERβ that control distinct effects of different botanical estrogens. Nuclear Receptor Signaling. 2014, 12:e001. doi:10.162/nrs.12001. PMID: 18344977 PMCID: PMC4193135. [Abstract]

Bergamaschi, A., Madak-Erdoğan, Z., Kim, Y.J., Choi, Y.L., Lu, H. and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. The Forkhead Transcription Factor FOXM1 Promotes Endocrine Resistance and Invasiveness in Estrogen Receptor-Positive Breast Cancer by Expansion of Stem-like Cancer Cells. Breast Cancer Research. 16:436, 2014. PMID: 25213081 [Abstract]

Madak-Erdogan, Z., Ventrella, R., Petry, L., and Katzenellenbogen B.S Novel roles for ERK5 and Cofilin as Critical Mediators Linking Estrogen Receptor α-Driven Transcription, Actin Reorganization and Invasiveness in Breast Cancer. Mol Cancer Res. 12:714-727, 2014. PMID: 24505128 [Abstract]

Holton, S.E., Bergamaschi, A., Katzenellenbogen, B.S. and Bhargava, R. Integration of molecular profiling and chemical imaging to elucidate fibroblast-microenvironment impact on cancer cell phenotype and endocrine resistance in breast cancer. PLoS One. 9(5):e96878, 2014. PMID: 24816718 [Abstract]

Madak-Erdogan, Z. Charn, T.H., Jiang, Y., Liu, S.T., Katzenellenbogen, J.A. and Katzenellenbogen B.S. Integrative Genomics of Gene and Metabolic Regulation by Estrogen Receptors α and β, and Their Coregulators. Molecular Systems Biology 9:676, 2013. PMID: 23774759 [Abstract]

Kim, K., Madak-Erdogan, Z. and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. A MicroRNA196a2* and TP63 Circuit Regulated by Estrogen Receptor- and ERK2 that Controls Breast Cancer Proliferation and Invasiveness Properties. Hormones and Cancer 4:78-91, 2013. PMID: 23250869 [Abstract]

Zhao, Y., Park, S., Bagchi, M.K., Taylor, R.N., and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. The Coregulator, Repressor of Estrogen Receptor Activity (REA), is Crucial in the Control of the Timing and Magnitude of Uterine Decidualization. Endocrinology 154:1349-1360, 2013. PMID: 23392257 [Abstract]

Bergamaschi, A., Frasor, J., Borgen, K., Stanculescu, A., Johnson, P., Rowland, K., Wiley, E.L., and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. 14-3-3 zeta as a Predictor of Early Time to Recurrence and Distant Metastasis in Hormone Receptor Positive and -Negative Breast Cancers. Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 137:689-696, 2013. PMID: 23271328 [Abstract]

Jiang, Y., Gong, P., Madak-Erdogan, Z., Martin, T., Jeyakumar, M., Carlson, K., Khan, I., Smillie, T.J., Chittiboyina, A.G., Rotte, S.C.K., Helferich, W.G., Katzenellenbogen, J.A. and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. Mechanisms Enforcing the Estrogen Receptor Beta-Selectivity of Botanical Estrogens. FASEB J 2013. PMID: 23882126 [Abstract]

Bhatt, S., Xiao, Z., Meng, Z. and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. Phosphorylation by p38MAPK Promotes Estrogen Receptor-{alpha}Turnover and Functional Activity via the SCFSkp2 Proteasomal Complex. Mol. Cell Biol. 32:1928-1943, 2012. PMID: 22431515 [Abstract]

Park, S., Yoon, S., Zhao, Y., Park, S.E., Liao, L., Xu, J., Lydon, J.P., DeMayo, F.J., O’Malley, B.W., Bagchi, M.K. and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. Uterine Development and Fertility are Dependent on Gene Dosage of the Nuclear Receptor Coregulator REA. Endocrinology 153:3982-3994, 2012. PMID: 22585830 [Abstract]

Madak-Erdogan, Z. and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Modulation of Estrogen Receptor {alpha}-Mediated Gene Regulation by a Multimeric Chromatin Complex Involving the Two Receptors and the Coregulator RIP140. Toxicological Sciences 125:401-411, 2012. PMID: 22071320 [Abstract]

Bergamaschi, A. and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. Tamoxifen down-regulation of miR-451 increases 14-3-3ζ and promotes breast cancer cell survival and endocrine resistance. Oncogene 31:39-47, 2012. PMID: 21666713 [Abstract]

Stossi, F., Madak-Erdogan, Z., and Katzenellenbogen, B.S. Macrophage-Elicited Loss of Estrogen Receptor-α in Breast Cancer Cells via Involvement of MAPK and c-Jun at the ESR1 Genomic Locus. Oncogene 31:1825–1834, 2012. PMID: 21860415 [Abstract]

Complete Publications List