Prof. Juven-Gershon Tamar

Associate Professor
Prof. Tamar Juven-Gershon



1988-1991 B.Sc. (Cum Laude)

Faculty of Life Sciences, Tel-Aviv University, Tel- Aviv, Israel

"Research Program for Excellence" of the Faculty of Life Sciences

1991-1993 M.Sc. (Cum Laude)
Dept. of Chemical Immunology, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel

1994-2000 Ph.D.
Dept. of Molecular Cell Biology, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel

2000-2005 Postdoctoral Fellow
Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego 



2015- present, Associate Professor, The Mina & Everard Goodman Faculty of Life Sciences, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan, Israel.

2009-2015, Senior Lecturer, The Mina & Everard Goodman Faculty of Life Sciences, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan, Israel.

2005-2009, Assistant Project Scientist, Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego.




1. Shigaki, D., Adato, O., Adhikari, A.N., Dong, S., Hawkins-Hooker, A., Inoue, F., Juven-Gershon, T., Kenlay, H., Martin, B., Patra, A., Penzar, D.D., Schubach, M., Xiong, C., Yan, Z., Boyle, A.P., Kreimer, A., Kulakovskiy, I.V., Reid, J., Unger, R., Yosef, N., Shendure, J., Ahituv, N., Kircher, M. and Beer, M.A. (2019) Integration of multiple epigenomic marks improves prediction of variant impact in saturation mutagenesis reporter assay. Hum Mutat. doi: 10.1002/humu.23797

2. Shir-Shapira, H.*, Sloutskin, A.*, Adato, O., Ovadia-Shochat, A., Ideses, D., Zehavi, Y., Kassavetis, G., Kadonaga, J.T., Unger, R. and Juven-Gershon, T. (2019) Identification of evolutionarily conserved downstream core promoter elements required for the transcriptional regulation of Fushi tarazu target genes. PLoS ONE. 14(4): e0215695

*The first two authors contributed equally to this paper

3. Even D.Y., Kedmi A., Ideses D. and Juven-Gershon T. (2017) Functional screening of core promoter activity. Methods Mol Biol. 1651, 77-91

4. Sameach, H., Narunsky, A., Azoulay-Ginsburg, S., Gevorkyan-Aiapetov, L., Zehavi, Y., Moskovitz, Y., Juven-Gershon, T., Ben-Tal, N. and Ruthstein, S. (2017) Structural and dynamics characterization of the MerR family metalloregulator CueR in its repression and activation states. Structure. 25, 1-9

5. Chen, D., Orenstein, Y., Golodnitsky, R., Pellach, M., Avrahami, D., Wachtel, C., Ovadia-Shochat, A., Shir-Shapira, H., Kedmi, A., Juven-Gershon, T., Shamir, R., Gerber, D. (2016) SELMAP - SELEX affinity landscape MAPping of transcription factor binding sites using integrated microfluidics. Scientific Reports, 6, 33351

6. Even, D.Y. *, Kedmi, A. *, Basch-Barzilay, S. *, Ideses, D., Tikotzki, R., Shir-Shapira, H., Shefi, O. and Juven-Gershon, T. (2016) Engineered promoters for potent transient overexpression. PLoS ONE, 11(2): e0148918

*The first three authors contributed equally to this paper

7. Sloutskin, A., Danino, Y.M., Orenstein, Y., Zehavi, Y., Doniger, T., Shamir, R. and Juven-Gershon, T. (2015) ElemeNT: A computational tool for detecting core promoter elements. Transcription, 6(3), 41-50 

8. Shir-Shapira, H.*, Sharabany,J.*, Filderman, M., Ideses, D., Ovadia-Shochat, A., Mannervik, M. and Juven-Gershon, T. (2015) Structure-function analysis of the Drosophila melanogaster caudal provides insights into core promoter-preferential activation. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 290(28), 17293-305

*The first two authors contributed equally to this paper

9. Danino,Y.M, Even, D., Ideses, D.,  and Juven-Gershon,T. (2015) The core promoter: at the heart of gene expression.  BBA Gene Regulatory Mechanisms, 1849(8), 1116-31

10. Zehavi, Y*., Kedmi, A.*, Ideses, D., and Juven-Gershon, T. (2015) TRF2: TRansForming the view of general transcription factors. Transcription, 6:1, 1-6 

*The first two authors contributed equally to this paper

11. Safra, M., Fickentscher, R., Levi-Ferber, M., Danino, Y.M., Haviv-Chesner, A., Hansen, M., Juven-Gershon, T., Weiss, M. and Henis-Korenblit, S. (2014) The FOXO transcription factor DAF-16 bypasses ire-1 requirement to promote endoplasmic reticulum homeostasis. Cell Metabolism, 20, 870-881

12. Kedmi, A.*, Zehavi, Y*., Glick, Y., Orenstein, Y., Ideses, D., Wachtel, C., Doniger, T., Waldman Ben-Asher, H., Munster, N., Thompson, J., Anderson, S., Avrahami, D., Yates, JR 3rd, Shamir, R., Gerber, D., and Juven-Gershon, T.   (2014) TRF2 is a preferential core promoter regulator. Genes & Development, 28, 2163-2174 

*The first two authors contributed equally to this paper

13. Zehavi, Y., Sloutskin, A., Kuznetsov, O., and Juven-Gershon, T. (2014) The core promoter composition establishes a new dimension in developmental gene networks.  Nucleus, 5:4, 298–303

14. Zehavi, Y., Kuznetsov, O., Ovadia-Shochat, A. and Juven-Gershon, T. (2014) Core promoter functions in the regulation of gene expression of Drosophila Dorsal target genes. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 289, 11993-12004

15. Cianfrocco, M.A., Kassavetis, G.A., Grob, P., Fang, J., Juven-Gershon, T., Kadonaga, J.T. and Nogales, E. (2013) Human TFIID binds to core promoter DNA in a reorganized structural state. Cell, 152, 120-131

16. Juven-Gershon, T. and Kadonaga, J.T. (2010) Regulation of gene expression via the core promoter and the basal transcriptional machinery. Developmental Biology, 339, 225-229

- One of the top-five most cited articles published in the journal Developmental Biology during the period 1/1/2009-31/12/2011

17. Juven-Gershon, T., Hsu, J.-Y. and Kadonaga, J.T. (2008) Caudal, a key developmental regulator, is a DPE-specific transcriptional factor. Genes & Development, 22, 2823-2830

18. Hsu, J.-Y, Juven-Gershon, T., Marr, M.T. 2nd, Wright, K.J., Tjian, R. and Kadonaga, J.T. (2008) TBP, Mot1, and NC2 establish a regulatory circuit that controls DPE-versus TATA-dependent transcription. Genes & Development, 22, 2353-2358

19. Juven-Gershon, T., Hsu, J.-Y. Theisen J.W.M. and Kadonaga, J.T. (2008) The RNA polymerase II core promoter – the gateway to transcription. Current Opinion in Cell Biology, 20, 253-259

20. Juven-Gershon, T., Hsu, J.-Y. and Kadonaga, J.T. (2006) Perspectives on the RNA polymerase II core promoter. Biochemical Society Transactions 34, 1051-1054

21. Juven-Gershon, T., Cheng, S. and Kadonaga, J.T. (2006) Rational design of a super core promoter that enhances gene expression. Nature Methods, 3, 917 - 922

- Potential applications of this study were discussed in: Perkel, J.M. (2007) Studies you can use. The Scientist, 21,63

22. Susini, L.*, Passer, B.J.*, Amzallag-Elbaz, N.*, Juven-Gershon, T.*, Prieur, S., Privat, N., Tuynder, M, Gendron M., Israel, A., Amson, R., Oren, M. and Telerman, A. (2001) Siah1 binds and regulates the function of Numb. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 98, 15067-15072

*The first four authors contributed equally to this paper

23. Unger, T.*, Juven-Gershon, T.*, Moallem, E.*, Berger, M., Vogt-Sionov, R., Lozano, G., Oren, M. and Haupt, Y. (1999) Critical role for Ser20 of human p53 in the negative regulation of p53 by Mdm2. EMBO J., 18, 1805-1814

*The first three authors contributed equally to this paper

24. Elkeles, A., Juven-Gershon, T., Israeli, D., Wilder, S., Zalcenstein, A. and Oren, M. (1999) The c-fos proto-oncogene is a target for transactivation by the p53 tumor suppressor. Molecular and Cellular Biology, 19, 2594-2600

25. Juven-Gershon, T. and Oren, M. (1999) Mdm2: the ups and the downs. Molecular Medicine, 5, 71-83

26. Juven-Gershon, T., Shifman, O., Unger, T., Elkeles, A., Haupt, Y. and Oren, M. (1998) The Mdm2 oncoprotein interacts with the cell fate regulator Numb. Molecular and Cellular Biology, 18, 3974-3982

27. Barak, Y., Gottlieb, E., Juven-Gershon, T. and Oren, M. (1994) Regulation of mdm2 expression by p53: alternative promoters produce transcripts with nonidentical translation potential. Genes & Development, 8, 1739-1749

28. Barak, Y., Lupo, A., Zauberman, A., Juven, T., Aloni-Grinstein, R., Gottlieb, E., Rotter, V. and Oren, M. (1994) Targets for transcriptional activation by wild-type p53: endogenous retroviral LTR, immunoglobulin-like promoter, and an internal promoter of the mdm2 gene. Cold Spring Harb Symp. Quant. Biol., 59, 225-235

29. Soussan, L., Tchernakov, K., Bachar-Lavi, O., Juven, T., Wertman, E. and Michaelson, D.M. (1994) Antibodies to different isoforms of the heavy neurofilament protein (NF- H) in normal aging and Alzheimer's disease. Molecular Neurobiology, 9, 83-91

30. Juven, T., Barak, Y., Zauberman, A., George, D.L. and Oren, M. (1993) Wild type p53 can mediate sequence-specific transactivation of an internal promoter within the mdm2 gene. Oncogene, 8, 3411-3416

31. Barak, Y., Juven, T., Haffner, R. and Oren, M. (1993) mdm2 expression is induced by wild type p53 activity. EMBO J., 12, 461-468


1. Optimized core promoters and uses thereof. Kadonaga and Gershon. Patent no. US 7,968,698 B2: 2006.



Molecular Studies of Transcription and Regulation of Developmental Genes

We study the molecular basis of the fascinating process by which our different body parts are formed during development. 

The regulation of gene transcription is critical for the proper development and growth of an organism. The function of these genes is also crucial for us as adults; in the unfortunate event of malfunction, the end result might be cancer, such as leukemia.

Control elements that are embedded in the DNA sequences of genes are responsible for proper development. We study these DNA sequence elements and how they control different genes. Our analysis is important for understanding the regulation of development and complex systems.

We focus on the core promoter, which is generally defined to be the DNA region that directs the accurate initiation of transcription by RNA polymerase II. In the past, the core promoter has often been presumed to be a generic entity that functions by a single universal mechanism. Recent findings reveal that there is widespread diversity in core promoter structure and function. We have embarked on the identification of biological functions of core promoter motifs and the identification of core promoter-specific activators.

Our goal is to understand the complex regulation of eukaryotic gene expression. We focus on the unique contribution of the core promoter to transcriptional regulation of gene networks.

In our research, we use the fruit fly (scientifically known as Drosophila melanogaster), as our model organism. The fruit fly has been used as an excellent model for genetics and developmental biology for many years. Strikingly, at the molecular level, there is remarkable similarity between humans and flies. Practically, this means that studying the regulation of development in the fly can teach us a lot about the regulation in humans.

In our lab we combine methodologies of molecular biology, biochemistry, cell biology, bioinformatics and developmental biology. 



80-558 Transcriptional Regulation in Eukaryotes

80-242, 80-220-30 Molecular Biology and Genetic Engineering

80-937 Biotechnology Seminar for Graduate Students

80-410 Biotechnology Seminar for third year undergraduate students