George Blanck, Ph.D.

Professor, College Of Medicine Molecular Medicine

College Of Medicine Molecular Medicine

Full Professor, Dept of Molecular Medicine, College of Medicine, University of South Florida

Contact Info 12901 Bruce B. Downs Blvd.
Tampa, FL 33612

Academic Email:

Academic Phone: (813) 974-9585

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  • PHD, Biological Sciences, Columbia University, 1984

Interdisciplinary and Emerging Signature Programs

  • Allergy, Immunology & Infectious Disease
  • Cancer Biology
  • Other

Research Interests

  • genomics and bioinformatics based analysis of gene expression and cancer; vaccine development and immunotherapeutics

Recent Publications

  • Szekeres, K.Koul, R.Mauro, J.Lloyd, M.Johnson, J.Blanck, G. An Oct-1-based, feed-forward mechanism of apoptosis inhibited by co-culture with Raji B-cells: Towards a model of the cancer cell/B-cell microenvironment. Experimental and molecular pathology. , 2014.
  • Blanck, G. The Rise of the Biomedical Sciences Master's Program at U.S. Medical Colleges. Teaching and learning in medicine. 26(4) : 409-11, 2014.
  • Blanck, G. The future of cancer research: prevention, screening, vaccines, and tumor-specific drug combos. Human vaccines & immunotherapeutics. 10(3) : 700-2, 2014.
  • Lloyd, MC.Burke, N.Kalantarpour, F.Niesen, MI.Hall, A.Pennypacker, K.Citron, B.Pick, CG.Adams, V.Das, M.Mohapatra, S.Cualing, H.Blanck, G. QUANTITATIVE MORPHOLOGICAL AND MOLECULAR PATHOLOGY OF THE HUMAN THYMUS CORRELATE WITH INFANT CAUSE OF DEATH. Technology and innovation. 16(1) : 55-62, 2014.
  • Mauro, JA.Butler, S.Ramsamooj, M.Blanck, G. Copy number loss or silencing of apoptosis-effector genes in cancer. Gene. , 2014.
  • Cronin, K.Escobar, H.Szekeres, K.Reyes-Vargas, E.Rockwood, AL.Lloyd, MC.Delgado, JC.Blanck, G. Regulation of HLA-DR peptide occupancy by histone deacetylase inhibitors. Human vaccines & immunotherapeutics. 9(4) , 2013.
  • Mauro, JA.Blanck, G. Functionally distinct gene classes as bigger or smaller transcription factor traps: A possible stochastic component to sequential gene expression programs in cancer. Gene. , 2013.
  • Pava, LM.Morton, DT.Chen, R.Blanck, G. Unifying the Genomics-based Classes of Cancer Fusion Gene Partners: Large Cancer Fusion Genes Are Evolutionarily Conserved. Cancer genomics & proteomics. 9(6) : 389-95, 2012.
  • Pillai, S.Szekeres, K.Lawrence, NJ.Chellappan, SP.Blanck, G. Regulation of interlocking gene regulatory network subcircuits by a small molecule inhibitor of retinoblastoma protein (RB) phosphorylation: Cancer cell expression of HLA-DR. Gene. , 2012.
  • Long, K.Abuelenen, T.Pava, L.Bastille, M.Blanck, G. Size matters: sequential mutations in tumorigenesis may reflect the stochastic effect of mutagen target sizes. Genes & cancer. 2(10) : 927-31, 2011.
  • Xu, L.Niesen, MI.Blanck, G. Linkage of a tumor immune function and cell cycle de-regulation via a gene regulatory network subcircuit. Molecular immunology. 46(4) : 569-75, 2009.
  • Mohapatra, S.Park, SJ.Boyapalle, S.Pastey, MK.Graham, BS.Blanck, G. Human respiratory syncytial virus reduces the number of cells in S-phase and increases GADD153 expression in HEp-2 cells. Acta virologica. 53(3) : 207-11, 2009.
  • Kazemfar, K.Chen, R.Nicholson, K.Coppola, D.Zhou, JM.Chen, X.Wei, S.Blanck, G. Combined IL-8 and TGF-beta blockade efficiently prevents neutrophil infiltrates into an A549-cell tumor. Immunology letters. 122(1) : 26-9, 2009.
  • Niesen, MI.Blanck, G. Rescue of major histocompatibility-DR surface expression in retinoblastoma-defective, non-small cell lung carcinoma cells by the MS-275 histone deacetylase inhibitor. Biological & pharmaceutical bulletin. 32(3) : 480-2, 2009.
  • Niesen, MI.Osborne, AR.Lagor, WR.Zhang, H.Kazemfar, K.Ness, GC.Blanck, G. Technological advances in the study of HLA-DRA promoter regulation: extending the functions of CIITA, Oct-1, Rb, and RFX. Acta biochimica et biophysica Sinica. 41(3) : 198-205, 2009.
  • Coppola, D.Parikh, V.Boulware, D.Blanck, G. Substantially reduced expression of PIAS1 is associated with colon cancer development. Journal of cancer research and clinical oncology. , 2009.
  • Narsing, S.Jelsovsky, Z.Mbah, A.Blanck, G. Genes that contribute to cancer fusion genes are large and evolutionarily conserved. Cancer genetics and cytogenetics. 191(2) : 78-84, 2009.
  • Spies, T.Bresnahan, M.Bahram, S.Arnold, D.Blanck, G.Mellins, E.Pious, D.Demars, R. Pillars Article: A Gene in the Human Major Histocompatibility Complex Class II Region Controlling the Class I Antigen Presentation Pathway. Nature 1990. 348: 744-747. Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950). 180(5) : 2737-40, 2008.
  • Palubin, KM.Goodwin, BL.Niesen, MI.Le, EA.Osborne, AR.Blanck, G. A direct mechanistic link between growth control and a tumor cell immune function: increased interleukin-8 secretion accounts for elimination of Oct-1 antisense transformants from scid mice. Anticancer research. 26(3A) : 1733-8, 2006.
  • Osborne, AR.Zhang, H.Blanck, G. Oct-1 DNA binding activity unresponsive to retinoblastoma protein expression prevents MHC class II induction in a non-small cell lung carcinoma cell line. Molecular immunology. 43(6) : 710-6, 2006.
  • Le, E.Zhang, H.Blanck, G. CIITA transformation rescues the apoptotic function of MHC class II in melanoma cells. Anticancer research. 25(6B) : 3889-92, 2006.
  • Niesen, MI.Osborne, AR.Yang, H.Rastogi, S.Chellappan, S.Cheng, JQ.Boss, JM.Blanck, G. Activation of a methylated promoter mediated by a sequence-specific DNA-binding protein, RFX. The Journal of biological chemistry. 280(47) : 38914-22, 2005.
  • Blanck, G. Mutations and regulatory anomalies effecting tumor cell immune functions. Cancer immunology, immunotherapy : CII. 53(1) : 1-16, 2004.
  • Osborne, AR.Zhang, H.Fejer, G.Palubin, KM.Niesen, MI.Blanck, G. Oct-1 maintains an intermediate, stable state of HLA-DRA promoter repression in Rb-defective cells: an Oct-1-containing repressosome that prevents NF-Y binding to the HLA-DRA promoter. The Journal of biological chemistry. 279(28) : 28911-9, 2004.
  • Eason, DD.LeBron, C.Coppola, D.Moscinski, LC.Livingston, S.Sutton, ET.Blanck, G. Development of CD30+ lymphoproliferative disease in mice lacking interferon regulatory factor-1. Oncogene. 22(40) : 6166-76, 2003.
  • Xi, H.Blanck, G. The IRF-2 DNA binding domain facilitates the activation of the class II transactivator (CIITA) type IV promoter by IRF-1. Molecular immunology. 39(11) : 677-84, 2003.
  • Blanck, G. Components of the IFN-gamma signaling pathway in tumorigenesis. Archivum immunologiae et therapiae experimentalis. 50(3) : 151-8, 2002.
  • Goodwin, BL.Xi, H.Tejiram, R.Eason, DD.Ghosh, N.Wright, KL.Nagarajan, U.Boss, JM.Blanck, G. Varying functions of specific major histocompatibility class II transactivator promoter III and IV elements in melanoma cell lines. Cell growth & differentiation : the molecular biology journal of the American Association for Cancer Research. 12(6) : 327-35, 2001.
  • Eason, DD.Blanck, G. High level class II trans-activator induction does not occur with transient activation of the IFN-gamma signaling pathway. Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950). 166(2) : 1041-8, 2001.
  • Osborne, A.Zhang, H.Yang, WM.Seto, E.Blanck, G. Histone deacetylase activity represses gamma interferon-inducible HLA-DR gene expression following the establishment of a DNase I-hypersensitive chromatin conformation. Molecular and cellular biology. 21(19) : 6495-506, 2001.
  • Eason, DD.Coppola, D.Livingston, S.Shepherd, AT.Blanck, G. Loss of MHC class II inducibility in hyperplastic tissue in Rb-defective mice. Cancer letters. 171(2) : 209-14, 2001.
  • Xi, H.Goodwin, B.Shepherd, AT.Blanck, G. Impaired class II transactivator expression in mice lacking interferon regulatory factor-2. Oncogene. 20(31) : 4219-27, 2001.
  • Zhang, H.Wei, S.Sun, J.Coppola, D.Zhong, B.Wu, GD.Goodwin, B.Sebti, S.Djeu, JY.Blanck, G. Retinoblastoma protein activation of interleukin 8 expression inhibits tumor cell survival in nude mice. Cell growth & differentiation : the molecular biology journal of the American Association for Cancer Research. 11(12) : 635-9, 2000.
  • Xi, H.Blanck, G. Interferon regulatory factor-2 point mutations in human pancreatic tumors. International journal of cancer. Journal international du cancer. 87(6) : 803-8, 2000.
  • Eason, DD.Shepherd, AT.Blanck, G. Interferon regulatory factor 1 tryptophan 11 to arginine point mutation abolishes DNA binding. Biochimica et biophysica acta. 1446(1-2) : 140-4, 1999.
  • Xi, H.Eason, DD.Ghosh, D.Dovhey, S.Wright, KL.Blanck, G. Co-occupancy of the interferon regulatory element of the class II transactivator (CIITA) type IV promoter by interferon regulatory factors 1 and 2. Oncogene. 18(43) : 5889-903, 1999.
  • Blanck, G. HLA class II expression in human tumor lines. Microbes and infection / Institut Pasteur. 1(11) : 913-8, 1999.
  • Osborne, A.Tschickardt, M.Blanck, G. Retinoblastoma protein expression facilitates chromatin remodeling at the HLA-DRA promoter. Nucleic acids research. 25(24) : 5095-102, 1997.
  • Lu, Y.Tschickardt, ME.Schmidt, BJ.Blanck, G. IFN-gamma inducibility of class II transactivator is specifically lacking in human tumour lines: relevance to retinoblastoma protein rescue of IFN-gamma inducibility of the HLA class II genes. Immunology and cell biology. 75(4) : 325-32, 1997.
  • Lu, Y.Boss, JM.Hu, SX.Xu, HJ.Blanck, G. Apoptosis-independent retinoblastoma protein rescue of HLA class II messenger RNA IFN-gamma inducibility in non-small cell lung carcinoma cells. Lack of surface class II expression associated with a specific defect in HLA-DRA induction. Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950). 156(7) : 2495-502, 1996.
  • Schmidt, B.Carter, SS.Berry, DE.Blanck, G. Vitamin D3 reduces the apoptotic effect of IFN-gamma but does not facilitate HLA class II inducibility in RB-defective cells. Cancer letters. 110(1-2) : 169-76, 1996.
  • Berry, DE.Lu, Y.Schmidt, B.Fallon, PG.O'Connell, C.Hu, SX.Xu, HJ.Blanck, G. Retinoblastoma protein inhibits IFN-gamma induced apoptosis. Oncogene. 12(8) : 1809-19, 1996.
  • Tschickardt, ME.Lu, Y.Jacim, M.Ussery, GD.Steimle, V.Mach, B.Blanck, G. RB and a novel E2F-1 binding protein in MHC class II deficient B-cell lines and normal IFN-gamma induction of the class IL transactivator CIITA in class II non-inducible RB-defective tumor lines. International journal of cancer. Journal international du cancer. 62(4) : 461-5, 1995.
  • Lu, Y.Ussery, GD.Muncaster, MM.Gallie, BL.Blanck, G. Evidence for retinoblastoma protein (RB) dependent and independent IFN-gamma responses: RB coordinately rescues IFN-gamma induction of MHC class II gene transcription in noninducible breast carcinoma cells. Oncogene. 9(4) : 1015-9, 1994.
  • Lu, Y.Ussery, GD.Jacim, M.Tschickardt, M.Boss, JM.Blanck, G. Retinoblastoma protein regulation of surface CD74 (invariant chain) expression in breast carcinoma cells. Molecular immunology. 31(17) : 1365-8, 1994.
  • Blanck, G.Strominger, JL. Cosmid clones in the HLA-DZ and -DP subregions. Human immunology. 27(3) : 265-8, 1990.
  • Blanck, G.Lok, M.Kok, K.Downie, E.Korn, JH.Strominger, JL. Gamma-interferon induction of HLA class II mRNAs in dermal fibroblasts studied by RNAse protection analysis. Human immunology. 29(2) : 150-6, 1990.
  • Spies, T.Bresnahan, M.Bahram, S.Arnold, D.Blanck, G.Mellins, E.Pious, D.DeMars, R. A gene in the human major histocompatibility complex class II region controlling the class I antigen presentation pathway. Nature. 348(6303) : 744-7, 1990.
  • Spies, T.Blanck, G.Bresnahan, M.Sands, J.Strominger, JL. A new cluster of genes within the human major histocompatibility complex. Science (New York, N.Y.). 243(4888) : 214-7, 1989.
  • Blanck, G.Li, D.Pomert, E.Pollack, R.Chen, S. Multiple insertions and tandem repeats of origin-minus simian virus 40 DNA in transformed rat and mouse cells. Journal of virology. 62(5) : 1520-3, 1988.
  • Blanck, G.Strominger, JL. Molecular organization of the DQ subregion (DO-DX-DV-DQ) of the human MHC and its evolutionary implications. Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950). 141(5) : 1734-7, 1988.
  • Levitt, A.Chen, S.Blanck, G.George, D.Pollack, RE. Two integrated partial repeats of simian virus 40 together code for a super-T antigen. Molecular and cellular biology. 5(4) : 742-50, 1985.

Positions Held

  • Associate Professor (Dept of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, College of Medicine, University of South Florida 1995 - 2002)
  • Assistant Professor (Dept of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, College of Medicine, University of South Florida 1990 - 1995)