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Molecular Virology and Microbiology

Houston, Texas

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Department of Molecular Virology and Microbiology
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F. Blaine Hollinger, M.D.

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 F. Blaine Hollinger, M.D.

Department of Molecular Virology & Microbiology

Research Interests

Viral Hepatitis; Blood-Borne Pathogens; Molecular Determinants of HCV Treatment Failure; Small Animal Models for Viral Hepatitis Studies

The Eugene B. Casey Hepatitis Research Center and Diagnostic Laboratory (CRCDL) was established in 1988 as a facility whose program focuses on hepatitis and other blood-borne viruses, the diseases associated with these agents, their immunoprophylaxis and treatment.

Hepatitis C: State-of-the-art assays are being utilized to properly identify and characterize hepatitis C virus (HCV) in infected persons and to study its role in the immunopathogenesis of viral hepatitis. The safety and efficacy of new or novel treatment modalities are being investigated. Recent data strongly suggest that HCV persistence and/or resistance to treatment is a multifactorial process involving the host, the immune response, and the virus itself through its molecular interactions during the course of infection and treatment. We are interested in studying molecular determinants of viral sequences that could be associated with the chronicity of HCV infection and escape from treatment. To accomplish this goal, we plan to develop a small animal model for HCV infection based on humanized mouse liver which will be challenged with viral genomes collected from patients with different outcomes of infection including nonresponders to treatment. We will define which clusters of the genomic sequence are important for the outcome of the infection or treatment modality and characterize the molecular mechanisms involved in this process.

National Surveillance Study on Hemophilics: The CRCDL is involved in a national serosurveillance study sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the purpose of identifying HAV, HBV, HCV, HPV B19 and other new emerging viral agents in the U.S. hemophilia population.

SEN-V Virus: SEN-V virus is a member of the TT virus superfamily. It has been shown to be transmitted to humans by blood with recovery occurring in a large percentage of patients. The risk of developing serious disease among chronically infected persons has not been established. We are examining transmission among transfused recipients who have developed non-A-E hepatitis using PCR technology and are comparing these results to blood recipients who did not develop hepatitis.

Contact Information

Department of Molecular Virology & Microbiology
Baylor College of Medicine
One Baylor Plaza, MS BCM385
Houston, TX, 77030, U.S.A.



M.D., University of Kansas School of Medicine
Residency, University of Washington Affiliated Hospital in Seattle
Residency, University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City

Awards, Appointments and Honors

2005 “Physician of the Year”, Excellence Recognition Award, American Liver Foundation, South Texas Chapter

Recent Publications (PubMed)

Seeff LB, Hollinger FB, Alter HJ, et al. Long-term mortality and morbidity of transfusion-associated Non-A, Non-B and type C hepatitis: A National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute collaborative study. Hepatology 33:455-463, 2001.

Hollinger FB and Emerson SU. Hepatitis A virus. In: Knipe DM, Howley PM, Griffin DE, et al. (eds). Fields Virology, 4th edition. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Publishers; pp. 799-840, 2001.

Hollinger FB and Liang JT. Hepatitis B virus. In: Knipe DM, Howley PM, Griffin DE, et al. (eds). Fields Virology, 4th edition. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Publishers; pp. 2971-3036, 2001.

Lin HJ, Seeff LB, Barbosa L and Hollinger FB. Occurrence of Identical Hypervariable Region 1 Sequences of Hepatitis C Virus in Transfusion Recipients and their Respective Blood Donors: Divergence Over Time. Hepatology 34:424-9, 2001.

Hollinger FB, Kirtava A, Oakley M, et al. Blood Safety Monitoring Among Persons with Bleeding Disorders --- United States, May 1998-June 2002. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report MMWR 51:1152-1154, 2003.

Hollinger FB and Kleinman S. Transfusion Transmission of West Nile Virus: A merging of historical and contemporary perspective. Transfusion 43:992-997, 2003.

Lerat H, Honda M, Beard M, et al. Steatosis and Liver Cancer in Transgenic Mice Expressing the Structural and Nonstructural proteins of Hepatitis C Virus. Gastroenterology 122:352-365, 2002.

Lerat H, Shimizu YK and Lemon SM. Cell type-specific enhancement of hepatitis C virus IRES-directed translation due to 5’NTR substitutions selected during passage of virus in lymphoblastoid cells. J. Virol. 74:7024-31, 2000.

Lerat H, Rumin S, Habersetzer F, et al. In vivo tropism of hepatitis C virus genomic sequences in hematopoietic cells: influence of viral load, viral genotype and cell phenotype. Blood 91:3841-384, 1998.