NavBar NavBar Graduate Studies NavBar Contact NavBar Directory
Home divider Research divider3 divider4 divider5
Timothy W. Nilsen, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus


Education: Ph.D. Molecular Biology, SUNY Albany, 1978

Secondary Appointment in: Department of Biochemistry, Department of Medicine

Editor of the RNA Journal

Email: twn

Office Location: Wood Blgd. W127

Office Phone: 216-368-1606

Office FAX: 216-368-2010

Laboratory Location: W123, RT100 K, L

Laboratory Phone: 216-368-8531


Curriculum Vitae

The RNA Journal

Research:  Mechanisms of post

Our lab is currently studying several aspects of post-transcriptional gene regulation:

1. Identification and mechanistic characterization of splicing silencers. Splicing silencers are RNA elements that downregulate the use of splice sites.


2. Mechanism of trans-splicing in a parasitic nematode. We have developed cell free systems to analyze this unusual splicing reaction that joins two independently transcribed RNAs.


3. Mechanism whereby miRNAs regulate translation. miRNAs are small RNAs that bind to the 3' UTRs of target mRNAs and downregulate their translation.


4. Mechanism by which the exon junction complex enhances translation. The EJC is deposited on mRNAs as a consequence of splicing and upregulates translation of spliced mRNAs.


Pubmed Link to Publications

Google Scholar Link to Publications


Select Publications

Nilsen, T.W. and Graveley, B.R.  (2009) Expansion of the eukaryote proteome by alternative splicing (Nature Insight) Nature, In Press.

Yu, Y., Maroney, P.A., Denker, J.A., Zhang, X.H-F, Dybkov, O., Lührmann, R. Jankowsky, E., Chasin, L.A. and Nilsen, T.W. (2008)  Dynamic Regulation of Alternative Splicing by Silencers that Modulate 5´ Splice Site Competition. Cell, 135:1224-1236.

Nilsen, T.W. (2007) RNA 1997–2007: A Remarkable Decade of Discovery. Molecular Cell  28: 715-720

Maroney, P.A., Yu, Y. Fisher, J. and Nilsen, T.W. (2006) Evidence that microRNAs are associated with translating messenger RNAs in human cells.  Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, 13:1102-1107.

Fairman, M.E., Maroney, P.A., Wang, W.,  Bowers, H.A., Gollnick P., Nilsen, T.W. &  Jankowsky, E.  (2004) Protein displacement by DExH/D “RNA helicases” without duplex unwinding. Science 340:730-734




Graduate Studies



Faculty Graduate Studies Contact Directory Home Research