Dr Timothy Mercer

Lab Head - Transcriptomic Research

Dr Tim Mercer completed his PhD at the at the University of Queensland with Prof John Mattick, where he undertook early research into noncoding RNAs making notable contributions to the recognition of long noncoding RNAs as a new class of genes.

Dr Mercer continues research at the Garvan Institute, with interests in genome and RNA biology (noncoding RNAs, gene organization, expression and splicing), and bioinformatic and sequencing innovations.

He has also undertaken research at the Broad Institute (Boston), Max Planck (Dresden) and Centre for Genome Regulation (Barcelona).

Research Interests

Gene Splicing
Long nonoding RNAs


2009 - PhD (in Computational Biology and Genomics), University of Queensland - Australia
2003 - BSc (Distinction First Class Honours in Medical Genetics), Western Australian Institute for Medical Research - Australia
2001 - BSc (major in Biochemistry and Genetics), University of Western Australia - Australia

Selected Publications

Mercer TR*, Clark MB*, Crawford JE, Brunck ME, Taft RJ, Nielsen LK, Dinger ME and Mattick JS. (2014) Targeted RNA sequencing for gene discovery and quantification. Nature Protocols. May;9(5):989-1009.

Mercer TR, Edwards SL, Clark MB, Neph SJ, Wang H, Stergachis AB, John S, Sandstrom R, Li G, Sandhu KS, Ruan Y, Nielsen LK, Mattick JS and Stamatoyannopoulos JA. (2013) DNase I–hypersensitive exons colocalize with promoters and distal regulatory elements. Nature Genetics  45: 852-9.

Mercer TR, Mattick JS. (2013) Understanding the regulatory and transcriptional complexity of the genome through structure. Genome Research. 23: 1081-1088

Mercer TR, Mattick JS (2012) Structure and function of long noncoding RNAs in epigenetic regulation. Nature Structural and Molecular Biology. 20: 300-307

Mercer TR, Gerhardt DJ, Dinger ME, Crawford J, Trapnell C, Jeddeloh JA, Mattick JS, Rinn JL (2011) Targeted RNA sequencing reveals deep complexity of the human transcriptome. Nature Biotechnology 30: 99-104

Mercer TR, Neph S, Dinger ME, Crawford J, Smith MA, Shearwood AJ, Haugen E, Bracken CP, Stamatoyannopoulos JA, Filipovska A, Mattick JS (2011) The human mitochondrial transcriptome. Cell 146: 645-658.

Mercer TR*, Dinger ME*, Bracken CP, Kolle G, Szubert JM, Korbie DJ, Askarian-Amiri ME, Gardiner BB, Goodall GJ, Grimmond SM, Mattick JS (2010) Regulated post-transcriptional RNA cleavage diversifies the eukaryotic transcriptome. Genome Research 20: 1639-1650.

Mercer TR, Dinger ME, Mattick JS (2009). Long noncoding RNA: insights into function. Nat Genet Rev. 10: 155-159.

Mercer TR*, Dinger ME*, Sunkin SM, Mehler MF, Mattick JS (2008). Specific expression of noncoding RNAs in the adult mouse brain. P. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 105: 716-721.

Dr Timothy Mercer

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