Ilana Chefetz-Menaker, PhD

Assistant Professor
Leader of Cancer Stem Cells and Necroptosis cancer research lab at The Hormel Institute,

Ilana Chefetz-Menaker

Contact Info

Office Phone 507-437-9624

Mailing Address:
Hormel Institute
801 16th Ave NE
Austin, MN 55912-3679

Assistant Professor
Leader of Cancer Stem Cells and Necroptosis cancer research lab at The Hormel Institute


Ilana Chefetz Menaker obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Food Engineering and Biotechnology from Technion. Ilana earned a PhD with Eli Sprecher working on rare dermatology disorder, Familial Tumoral Calcinosis. As a graduate student she was awarded Neeman Excellence Scholarship and Technion Woman Excellence Scientist Prize to continue for postdoctoral studies abroad.

After finishing her PhD Ilana joined the laboratory of Gil Mor at Yale Medical School where she was awarded three-year Life Science Postdoctoral Fellowship and was a recipient of 2010 AACR Scholar-in-Training Award. After a Postdoctoral position with Dr. Gil Mor at Yale, Dr. Chefetz moved to the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center to work with Dr. Ron Buckanovich. Her research there focused on developing novel therapeutics which target ALDH, an enzyme specifically expressed in chemotherapy resistant cancer stem-like cells. At University of Michigan Ilana received Ann and Sol Schreiber Mentored Investigator award, Foundation for Women’s Cancer WeRoc Research grant, and Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Pilot Award. In addition, Dr. Chefetz was awarded University of Michigan 2015 Outstanding postdoctoral fellow prize, and in 2016 was promoted to a Research Assistant Professor position.

Awards & Recognition

The Joseph S. & Caroline Gruss Life Monument Fund for assistance to IDF
HIAS Scholarship Award – in recognition of outstanding academic achievement
Albert Kligman Travel Fellowship – 68th Annual meeting of the Society for Investigative Dermatology, Los Angeles
ESDR Travel Fellowship – 37th Annual ESDR Meeting, Zurich, Switzerland
Neeman Travel Fellowship – 37th Annual ESDR Meeting, Zurich, Switzerland, 2007
Youth Travel Fund, FEBS course on "Structural variations in genome, gene expression, Single cell analysis: Arrays, Beads, High-throughput sequencing", Prague, Czech Republic
ECCB Travel Fellowship – European Conference on Computational Biology, Cagliari, Italy
EFS Travel Bursary-3rd EFS Functional Genomics Conference, Innsbruck, Austria
Brozman Foundation Postdoctoral Award in Ovarian Cancer Research
Young Scientist Program Travel Fellowship 21st IUBMB & 12th FAOBMB International Congress of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Shanghai China
American Association for Cancer Research Scholar-in-Training Award
Tony B Academic Travel Award SLAS Washington DC
Top 5 Student Posters Student Award SLAS Washington DC
WeRoc Ovarian Cancer Research Grant Foundation for Women’s Cancer
Marsha Rivkin Ovarian Cancer Pilot Grant Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer
Geri Fournier Ovarian Cancer Research Grant Michigan Ovarian Cancer Alliance
Elsa U. Pardee Foundation grant
Liz Tilberis Career Development Grant Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation
Michigan-Israel Partnership for research and Education (declined due to move to Minnesota)

President Excellence Award, Technion
Dean Excellence Award, Technion
Neeman Excellence Scholarship for Ph.D. students, Technion
Short Term Fellowship: Thomas Jefferson University, Division of Rheumatology, USA
Department of Internal Medicine Annual Meeting 2013, Winner Plenary Poster section, University of Michigan
Department of Internal Medicine Annual Meeting, Winner Oral Plenary speaker, University of Michigan
Outstanding Postdoctoral Fellow Award University of Michigan

Professional Associations

AACR – American Association for Cancer Research
International Gynecologic Cancer Society


Research Summary/Interests

Ovarian cancer;
Cancer Stem cells;
Cell programmed necrosis (necroptosis);
Novel targeted therapies;
Overcoming resistance in recurrent ovarian cancer;
Necroptosis and downstream molecular and metabolic factors