George Greco

Associate Professor, Chemistry

Hoffberger Science Building 220


B.S., Duke University, 1995
Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2000

Areas of Scholarly Expertise and Interest

  • Organic and Medicinal Chemistry
  • Development of Small Molecule DNA Ligase Inhibitors as Biological Probes and Potential Cancer Chemotherapeutics
  • Development of Novel Transition Metal Catalyzed Cycloaddition Reactions

Courses Taught:

  • Principles of Chemistry I Lab (CHE 112)
  • Organic Chemistry I (CHE 230)
  • Organic Chemistry II (CHE 235)
  • Organic Chemistry III (CHE 330)
  • Biochemistry Lab (CHE 342)
  • Modern Methods of Chemical Analysis (CHE 355)
  • Modern Methods of Chemical Analysis Lab (CHE 356)
  • Inorganic Chemistry (CHE 372)
  • Inorganic Chemistry Lab (CHE 373)
  • Medicinal Chemistry (CHE 380)
  • Advanced Topics in Chemistry: NMR Spectroscopy (CHE 392)
  • Organic Chemistry I for Postbac Premed Students (CHE 636)
  • Organic Chemistry II for Postbac Premed Students (CHE 637)

Recent Publications/Presentations/Performances


Tobin, L.A.; Robert, C.; Nagaria, P.; Chumsri, S.; Twaddell, W.; Ioffe, O.B.; Greco, G.E.; Brodie, A.H.; Tomkinson, A.E.; Rassool, F.V. "Targeting Abnormal DNA Repair in Therapy-Resistant Breast Cancers"  Molecular Cancer Research 2012, 10, 96-107.

Mbagu, M.K.; Kebulu, D.N.; Winstead, A.; Pramanik, S.K.; Banerjee, H.N.; Iwunze, M.O.; Wachira, J.M.; Greco, G.E.; Haynes, G.K.; Sehmer, A.;  Sarkar,F.H.;  Ho, D.M.; Pike, R.D.; Mandal, S.K.   "Fac-tricarbonyl(pentylcarbonato)(α-diimine)rhenium complexes: One-pot synthesis, characterization, fluorescence studies, and cytotoxic activity against human MDA-MB-231 breast, CCl-227 colon and BxPC-3 pancreatic carcinoma cell lines." . Inorg. Chem. Commun. 2012, 21, 35-38.

Orsa, D.K.; Haynes, G.K.; Pramanik, S.K.; Iwunze, M.O.; Greco, G.E.; Ho, D.M.; Krause, J.A.; Hill, D.A.; Williams, R.J.; Mandal, S.K. "The one-pot synthesis and the fluorescence and cytotoxicity studies of chlorotricarbonyl(a-diimine)rhenium(I), fac-(CO)3(a-diimine)ReCl, complexes. Inorg. Chem. Commun. 2008, 11, 1054-1056.

Greco, G.E. “Nobel Chemistry in the Undergraduate Laboratory: Synthesis of a Ruthenium Catalyst for Ring-Closing Olefin Metathesis,” J. Chem. Educ, 2007, 84, 1995-1997 .

Greco, G.E.; Gleason, B.L.; Lowery, T.A.; Kier, M.J.; Hollander, L.B.; Gibbs, S.A.; Worthy, A.D,  “Palladium-Catalyzed [3+2] Cycloaddition of Carbon Dioxide and Trimethylenemethane under Mild Conditions,” Org. Lett, 2007 9, 3817-3820.


Greco, G.E.; Chen, X.; Tobin, L.A.; Lapidus, R.A.; Sadowska, M.; Yang, A.J.; Nemieboka, N.N.; MacKerrell, A.D.; Zhong, S.; Rassool, F.V.; Tomkinson, A.E. "Rational design and evaluation of small molecule DNA ligase inhibitors as potential cancer chemotherapeutics."  240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Boston, MA, August 22-26 2010. Poster Presentation

Greco, G.E.; Dropkin, J.E.; Crasto, C.L.; Kier, M.J.; Pagonakis, A., "Synthesis of Nitrogen Heterocycles through Ni-Catalyzed [4+4] Cycloadditions," Poster Presentation, 41st National Organic Chemistry Symposium, Boulder, CO, June 7-11 2009.

Greco, G.E.; Gleason, B.L.; Lowery, T.A.; Kier, M.J.; Hollander, L.B.; Worthy, A.D.; Gibbs, S.A., “Palladium-catalyzed [3+2] cycloaddition of carbon dioxide and trimethylenemethane under mild conditions,” Oral Presentation, 234th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Boston, MA, August 19-23, 2007.


Funded Research

American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Fund Type GB research grant, $35,000. Project Title: “Transition metal-catalyzed [3+2] cycloaddition reactions incorporating carbon dioxide under mild conditions,” September 2005 to August 2009.

Awards/Significant Accomplishments

Sabbatical Appointment: Visiting Instructor, Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Maryland School of Medicine. September 2009 to August 2010. 


George Greco was born and raised in New York City and attended Hunter College High School.  He received his B.S. degree in chemistry from Duke University.  During his years as an undergraduate, he was a research assistant in the labs of Michael Pirrung (Duke), David Schuster (NYU), and Mark Burk (Duke).  He also spent a summer working in Bruce Maryanoff's lab at Johnson and Johnson Pharmaceuticals in Spring House PA. 

George received his Ph.D. from MIT in 2000, working in the lab of Richard R. Schrock, 2005 Nobel Laurete in Chemistry.  His thesis research involved the design and synthesis of molybdenum and tungsten complexes capable of reducing dinitrogen.  George was a TA for both Organic Chemistry and Inorganic Chemistry during which time he developed many of his ideas about teaching.

After graduation, George moved across the river to Boston College where he was an NIH postdoctoral fellow in Marc Snapper's lab, where he studied hetero Diels-Alder reactions of cyclobutadiene. 

George arrived at Goucher College as an Assistant Professor in 2002.  He was granted tenure and promoted to Associate Professor in 2008.  He was chair of the chemistry department for the 2008-2009 academic year, and has continued as chair since 2010.  In addition to his teaching and research responsibilities outlined above, he served a term on the college's Reappointment, Promotion, and Tenure committee (2008-2012), and is currently serving his second term as faculty secretary.

George has a strong secondary interest in music.  He has performed as a bassoonist with the Duke Symphony Orchestra, Duke Wind Symphony, MIT Symphony Orchestra, MIT Conert Band, and Goucher College Orchestra as well as numerous student groups at MIT and Harvard.  He currently plays handbells at Central Presbyterian Church.  Other personal interests include maps, weather, hiking, and bike riding. 

George is married to Jane Brock Greco (Senior Lecturer in Chemistry at The Johns Hopkins University).  The Grecos live in Roland Park with their son Samuel.