Thorsten Dieckmann

Thorsten Dieckmann
Associate Professor and Associate Chair (Graduate Studies and Research)
Location: ESC 227
Phone: 519-888-4567 x35036


Thorsten Dieckmann's research focuses on two areas of RNA related research: Small RNAs with interesting ligand binding or catalytic properties and the structure and function of RNA-protein complexes.

The structure determination of RNA and RNA-protein complexes by NMR requires the development and application of heteronuclear, multi-dimensional NMR techniques in combination with complete or specific 13C, 15N, and 2H labeling of the molecules under investigation. In addition in vitro selection can be applied to find RNAs with high affinities for target proteins or modules of these proteins. The study of ion-binding to RNA and the investigation of the molecular dynamics of free RNAs and their complexes will add to a more complete picture of the structure and function of RNA and RNA-protein interactions on a molecular level.

Research Interests

  • Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR)-spectroscopy
  • Ribonucleic acid (RNA) and protein structure
  • RNA-protein interactions
  • RNA catalysis
  • Viral infections
  • Cellular defense mechanisms
  • Biochemistry and Biophysics
  • Bionanotechnology and Biosensors
  • Devices and Analytical Methods


  • 1993 Dr. rer. nat. Chemistry, Technical University of Braunschweig, Germany
  • 1991 Dipl. Chem. Chemistry, Technical University of Braunschweig, Germany


  • 1993 Award of the degree “Dr. rer. nat” with honors (mit Auszeichnung) by the Technical University of Braunschweig, Germany
  • 1994 Long-term postdoctoral fellowship of the Human Frontier Science Program Organization, Strasbourg, France


  • 2014-present, Advisor, Biochemistry Program
  • 2011-present, Guelph-Waterloo Centre for Graduate Work in Chemistry and Biochemistry (GWC2) steering committee
  • 2010-present, Executive Committee
  • 2010-2014 Member of the Board, Faculty of Science Foundation
  • 2009-2010 Executive Director, Faculty of Science Foundation

Affiliations and Volunteer Work

  • Director, Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology


  • CHEM 237 - Introductory Biochemistry
    • Taught in 2019
  • CHEM 333 - Metabolism 1
    • Taught in 2019, 2023
  • CHEM 430 - Special Topics in Biochemistry
    • Taught in 2021, 2023
  • CHEM 433 - Advanced Biochemistry
    • Taught in 2019
  • CHEM 731 - Selected Topics in Biochemistry
    • Taught in 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023
  • MNS 331 - Biomaterials
    • Taught in 2021, 2022, 2023, 2024

* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.

Selected/Recent Publications

  • Pimlott, Douglas, Guy Guillemette, and Thorsten Dieckmann. "Structural Investigation of Melatonin Metabolites as Calmodulin Antagonists and potential Nitric Oxide Synthase Inhibitors." The FASEB Journal 33.1_supplement (2019): 784-12.
  • Anwar, A., Psutka, J., Walker, S.W.C., Dieckmann, T., Janizewski, J.S., Larry Campbell, J., Scott Hopkins, W. Separating and probing tautomers of protonated nucleobases using differential mobility spectrometry. International Journal of Mass Spectrometry (2018) 429, pp. 174-181.
  • Psutka, J.M., Dion-Fortier, A., Dieckmann, T., Campbell, J.L., Segura, P.A., Hopkins, W.S. Identifying Fenton-Reacted Trimethoprim Transformation Products Using Differential Mobility Spectrometry (2018) Analytical Chemistry, 90 (8), pp. 5352-5357.
  • Piazza, M., Taiakina, V., Dieckmann, T., Guillemette, J.G. Structural Consequences of Calmodulin EF Hand Mutations (2017) Biochemistry, 56 (7), pp. 944-956.
  • Chemin, J., Taiakina, V., Monteil, A., Piazza, M., Guan, W., Stephens, R.F., Kitmitto, A., Pang, Z.P., Dolphin,A.C., Perez-Reyes, E., Dieckmann, T., Guillemette, J.G., Spafford, J.D. Calmodulin regulates Cav3 T-type channels 3 at their gating brake (2017) Journal of Biological Chemistry, 292 (49), pp. 20010-20031.
  • Piazza, M., Dieckmann, T., & Guillemette, J. G. (2016). Structural studies of a complex between endothelial nitric oxide synthase and calmodulin at physiological calcium concentration. Biochemistry, 55:5962-5971.