Associate Dean for Research


Dr. Frank Blecha



Frank Blecha, PhD

University Distinguished Professor
Associate Dean for Research

Phone (785) 532-4537




  • Work with K-State College of Veterinary Medicine faculty and trainees to develop and sustain programs that are regionally relevant and internationally recognized.

  • Support the independent and collaborative research efforts of College faculty and trainees

  • Advance the research capabilities and reputation of the College through interactions with industry, government and commodity groups

  • Enhance graduate and post-doctoral training opportunities at the College



B.S.    University of Idaho, 1971
M.S.    University of Idaho, 1977
Ph.D.  Washington State University, 1981



American Association for the Advancement of Science
American Association of Immunologists
American Association of Veterinary Immunologists
American College of Veterinary Microbiologists
American Society of Animal Science
Conference of Research Workers in Animal Diseases
Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine
Society for Leukocyte Biology


Selected Publications:

Sang, Y., W. Brichalli, R.R.R. Rowland and F. Blecha. 2014. Genome-wide analysis of antiviral signature genes in porcine macrophages at different activation statuses. PLoS One. 5;9(2):e87613.

Li, X., A. Galliher-Beckley, L. Pappan, B. Trible, M. Kerrigan, A. Beck, D. Hesse, F. Blecha, J.C. Nietfeld, R.R. Rowland, and J. Shi. 2014. Comparison of host immune responses to homologous and heterologous type II porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) challenge in vaccinated and unvaccinated pigs. Biomed. Res. International. Article ID 416727,

Dawson, H.D., J.E. Loveland, G. Pascal, J.G. Gilbert, H. Uenishi, K.M. Mann, Y. Sang, J. Zhang, D. Carvalho-Silva, T. Hunt, M. Hardy, Z. Hu, S.H. Zhao, A. Anselmo, H. Shinkai, C. Chen, B. Badaoui, D. Berman, C. Amid, M. Kay, D. Lloyd, C. Snow, T. Morozumi, R.P. Cheng, M. Bystrom, R. Kapetanovic, J.C. Schwartz, R. Kataria, M. Astley, E. Fritz, C. Steward, M. Thomas, L. Wilming, D. Toki, A.L. Archibald, B. Bed Hom, D. Beraldi, T.H. Huang, T. Ait-Ali, F. Blecha, S. Botti, T.C. Freeman, E. Giuffra, D.A. Hume, J.K. Lunney, M.P. Murtaugh, J.M. Reecy, J.L. Harrow, C. Rogel-Gaillard, and C.K. Tuggle.  2013.  Structural and functional annotation of the porcine immunome.  BMC Genomics, 15;14:332.

Groenen, M.A.M., A.L. Archibald, H. Uenishi, C.K. Tuggle, Y. Takeuchi, M.F. Rothschild, C. Rogel-Gaillard, C. Park, D. Milan, H.-J. Megens, S. Li, D.M. Larkin, H. Kim, L.A.F. Frantz, M. Caccamo, H. Ahn, B.L. Aken, A. Anselmo, C. Anthon, L. Auvil, B. Badaoui, C.W. Beattie, C. Bendixen, D. Berman, F.Blecha, et al.  2012.  Analyses of pig genomes provide insight into porcine demography and evolution.  Nature, 491:393-398.  

Hennig-Pauka I., R. Koch, D. Hoeltig, G.F. Gerlach, K.H. Waldmann , F. Blecha, C. Brauer, and  H. Gasse. 2012.  PR-39, a porcine host defence peptide, is prominent in mucosa and lymphatic tissue of the respiratory tract in healthy pigs and pigs infected with Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae. BMC Res Notes.  5:539.

Sang Y, R.R. Rowland, and F. Blecha. 2011. Interaction between innate immunity and porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus.  Anim. Health Res. Rev. 12:149-167.

Sang Y, R.R. Rowland, and F. Blecha. 2010.  Molecular characterization and antiviral analyses of porcine type III interferons.  J. Interferon Cytokine Res. 30:801-807.

Sang, Y., R.R. Rowland, R.A. Hesse, and F. Blecha.  2010.  Differential expression and activity of the porcine type I interferon family.  Physiol. Genomics.  42:248-258.

Sang, Y., P. Ruchala, R.I. Lehrer, C.R. Ross, R.R.R. Rowland, and F. Blecha. 2009. Antimicrobial host defense peptides in an arteriviral infection: differential peptide expression and virus inactivation. Viral Immunol. 22:235-242.

Sang, Y. and F. Blecha. 2009. Porcine host defense peptides: expanding repertoire and functions. Dev. Comp. Immunol. 33:334-343.

Linde, A.., C. Ross, E.G. Davis, L. Dib, F. Blecha, and T. Melgarejo. 2008. Innate immunity and host defense peptides in veterinary medicine. J. Vet. Internal Med. 22:247-265.

Sang, Y., B. Ramanathan, C.R. Ross, and F. Blecha. 2005. Gene silencing and overexpression of porcine peptidoglycan recognition protein long isoforms: involvement in β-defensin-1 expression. Infect. Immun. 73:7133-7141.

Sang, Y., M.T. Ortega, F. Blecha, O. Prakash, and T. Melgarejo. 2005. Molecular cloning and characterization of three β-defensins from canine testis. Infect. Immun. 73:2611-2620.

Wu, H., Ross C., and Blecha F. Characterization of an upstream open reading frame in the 5' untranslated region of PR-39, a cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide. Mol. Immunol. 39:9-18, 2002.

Kenney, M.J., F. Blecha, D.A. Morgan, and R.J. Fels. Interleukin-1 beta alters brown adipose tissue but not renal sympathetic nerve responses to hypothermia. Am. J. Physiol. Heart Circ Physiol. 281:H2441-H2445, 2001.

Blecha, F. Immunology. In: Biology of the Domestic Pig, ( W.G. Pond and H.J. Mersmann, Eds.),pp. 688-711, Cornell University Press, Ithaca, 2001.

Korthuis, R.J., D.C. Gute, F. Blecha, and C. Ross. PR-39, a proline/arginine-rich antimicrobial peptide prevents postischemic microvascular dysfunction. Am. J. Physiol. 277 (Heart Circ. Physiol. 46): H1007-H1013, 1999.

Zhang, G., H. Hiraiwa, H. Yasue, H. Wu, C.R. Ross, D.Troyer, and F. Blecha. Cloning and characterization of the gene for a new epithelial β-defensin: genomic structure, chromosomal localization, and evidence for its constitutive expression. J. Biol. Chem. 274:24031-24037, 1999.

Shi, J., C.R. Ross, T.L. Leto, and F. Blecha. PR-39, a proline-rich antibacterial peptide that inhibits phagocyte NADPH oxidase activity by binding to Src homology 3 domains of p47phox. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 93:6014-6018, 1996.