Bento Soares, PhD

Senior Associate Dean for Research; Professor and CBP Department Head University of Illinois College of Medicine PeoriaCancer Biology and Pharmacology
Work Phone: 309-680-8601 Work Fax: 309-671-3442
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Biographical Info


The Soares lab has a longstanding interest in the epigenomic translation of environmental factors in cancer development and prevention. We are studying the impact of fat diets in a mouse model of prostate cancer [Wang et al., 2003, Cancer Cell 4: 209-221], and in collaboration with Dr. Sergey Malchenko, we are investigating the role of the microenvironment in the malignant transformation of radial glial cells in a mouse model of PNETs.


Marcelo Bento Soares, Ph.D., is the Senior Associate Dean for Research and Chairman of the Department of Cancer Biology and Pharmacology at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria.

Dr. Soares was recruited to the College of Medicine to provide academic leadership, enhance research infrastructure, and foster partnership developments in the medical school, across campuses, and with public and private sectors. Dr. Soares is committed to build upon the existing cancer research programs, to establish new areas of research in Cancer Microbiomics, Cancer Immunology, Cancer Metabolism and Cancer Computational Genomics and Bioinformatics. These research programs will serve as a catalyst to facilitate development of new interdisciplinary collaborative research programs in the medical school.

Formerly the Director of the Cancer Biology and Epigenomics Program at the Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute and the Scientific Director of the Falk Brain Tumor Center at the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Dr. Soares brings nearly three and a half decades of research work in genomics, genetics, and cancer biology. He is world renowned for his contributions to the Human Genome Project, and in particular for his work for the development of publicly available databases of Expressed Sequence Tags (ESTs). Over the last 15 years, Dr. Soares has dedicated his expertise in genetics and genomics to cancer research, including chondrosarcoma, osteosarcoma, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and most especially pediatric brain tumors.

Research Interests

Epigenomics, Pediatric brain tumors, prostate cancer, preventive care, contemplative science


B.A., Biological Sciences – Institute of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
M.S., Genetics and Development – Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Ph.D., Genetics and Molecular Biology – Columbia University (New York, NY)


Includes 139 peer-reviewed publications, four book chapters, four review articles, two book reviews, and two meeting proceedings publications, in addition to more than 200 meeting abstracts and 150 seminar presentations.

» PubMed

Public Database Contributions

A total of 5,304,902 Expressed Sequence Tag (EST) entries in the dbEST subdivision of GenBank as of Feb. 5, 2011. These ESTs were derived from cDNA clones generated in Dr. Soares’ laboratory. Sequences were either produced in his laboratory or at the laboratory of a collaborator. This represents approximately 33 percent of all human ESTs, 19 percent of all mouse ESTs, and 33 percent of all rat ESTs. He also has contributed to gene discovery/EST projects of numerous other species, including but not limited to Sus scrofa (pig), Xenopus, Aedes, Schistosoma, Anopheles, Glossina, Apis melifera.


A Method for Normalization of cDNA Libraries. M. Bento Soares (inventor), A. Efstratiadis (co-inventor), M.F. Bonaldo (co-inventor). U.S. Patent #08126594.

Categories: Cancer Biology and Pharmacology, UICOMP