Dr. Walter I. Silva



B.S. 1979BiologyUniversity of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras, PR
M.S. 1981BiologyUniversity of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras, PR
Ph.D. 1986PharmacologyCity University of New York, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, NY


In general terms my laboratory is interested in the pursual of clinically and translationally relevant research in the areas of cell injury, cancer and viral infectious diseases. Using an ample array and panel of cultured cell lines, particularly glioma and astrocytoma cell lines, we further explored the role of caveolae and caveolins in the trafficking and signaling mechanisms of the nucleotide P2Y2 receptor during mechanical injury, migration and proliferation. Recent collaborative efforts have diversified my research interests following in silico (molecular docking) strategies and which led to the identification of targets and lead-like drug candidates against a broad range of cancer types, and viruses (HIV, Influenza, and Dengue). This has expanded our intellectual property and entrepreneurship knowledge, capabilities and potential for significant series of translational studies and the concomitant emergence of novel pharmacological agents. Particular emphasis currently relies on the quantitative analysis of synergistic interactions between pharmacological agents with a diverse array of mechanism of anti-cancer drug action.


  • Cunci, L; González-Colón, V; Vargas-Pérez, B; Ortiz-Santiago, J; Pagán, M; Carrión, P; Cruz, J; Molina-Ontoria, A; Martinez, N; Silva, W; Echegoyen, L; Cabrera, C (2020). Multicolor Fluorescent Graphene Oxide Quantum Dots for Sensing Cancer Cell Biomarkers. ACS Applied Nano Materials, Accepted for publication, December 2020.  Vol 4(1):211-219.
  • Martínez M, Martínez NA, Miranda JD, Maldonado HM, Silva Ortiz WI (2019). Caveolin-1 Regulates P2Y2 Receptor Signaling During Mechanical Injury in Human 1321N1 Astrocytoma.  Biomolecules  9, 622; doi:10.3390/biom9100622
  • Martínez-Rivera, F.J., Martínez, N.A., Martínez, M., Ayala-Pagán, R.N., Silva, W, and Barreto, J. (2019). Neuroplasticity transcript profile of the ventral striatum in the extinction of opioid-induced place preference (2019). Neurobiology of Learning and Memory 163:107031. doi: 10.1016/j.nlm.2019.107031. Epub 2019 Jun 4.
  • Martínez, M, Martínez NA, and Silva WI (2017). Measurement of the Intracellular Calcium Concentration [Ca2+]i. Bioprotocols 7 (14), Published July 20, 2017. doi:   21769/BioProtoc.2411
  • Martínez, NA, Ayala AM, Martínez M, Martínez-Rivera FJ, Miranda JD and Silva WI (2016). Caveolin-1 regulates P2Y2 receptor signaling in human 1321N1 astrocytoma cells.  Journal of Biological Chemistry 291(23):12208-22. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M116.730226. Epub 2016 Apr 18.
  • Delgado-Vélez M, Báez-Pagán CA, Gerena Y, Quesada O, Santiago-Pérez LI, Capó-Vélez CM, Wojna V, Meléndez L, León-Rivera R, Silva  W and Lasalde-Dominicci JA (2015).  The α7-nicotinic receptor is upregulated in immune cells from HIV-seropositive women: consequences to the cholinergic anti-inflammatory response.  Clinical & Translational Immunology (2015) 4, e53; doi:10.1038/cti.2015.31. Epub 2015 December 2015.
  • Santiago, J. M., Torrado, A. I., Arocho, L. C., Rosas, O. R., Rodríguez, A. E., Toro, F. K., Salgado, I. K., Torres, Y. A., Silva, W. I., and Miranda, J. D. (2013). Expression profile of flotillin-2 and its pathophysiological role after spinal cord injury. Journal of Molecular Neuroscience 49, 347–359.
  • Salgado, I. K., Serrano, M., García, J. O., Martínez, N. A., Maldonado, H. M., Báez-Pagán, C. A., Lasalde-Dominicci, J. A., and Silva, W. I. (2012). SorLA in glia: shared subcellular distribution patterns with caveolin-1. Cellular Molecular Neurobiology 32, 409–421.
  • Báez-Pagán, Carlos A., Yaiza Martínez-Ortiz, José D. Otero-Cruz, Iris K. Salgado-Villanueva, Guermarie Velázquez, Alejandro Ortiz, Oreste Quezada, Walter I. Silva, José A. Lasalde-Dominicci (2008). Regulation of the functional pool of acetylcholine receptors via the interaction with caveolin-1-positive membrane microdomains.  Channels 2(3): 180-190.
  • Sanabria, P., Ross, E., Ramírez,, E., Colon, K., Hernández, M., Maldonado, HM., Silva, WI., Jiménez-Rivera, CA., and González, F. (2008). P2Y2 receptor desensitization on single endothelial cells. Endothelium 15(1): 43-51.
  • Nieves-Cintrón, M., Navedo, M., Caballero, D., Silva, W.I., and Lasalde-Dominicci, J.A. (2008). Functional contribution of position L218 to neuronal nicotinic alpha three receptors subtypes.  Journal of Neuroscience Research 86(13): 2884-94.
  • Silva, WI, Maldonado, HM, Velázquez, G, García, JO, and González, FA. (2007). Caveolins in Glial Cell Model Systems: From Detection to Significance. Journal Neurochemistry 103(S1):101-112.
  • Kao, W.H., Silva, W.I., and Sanchez, N.P. (2006). Caveolae in Human Disease- A dermatologic Perspective.  Caribbean Journal of Dermatology and Therapeutics 3:13-18.
  • Rubio-Dávila, M, Berríos, Maldonado, PM, Feliciano, M, Ramos, I, Rassi, N, Silva, WI, Jiménez-Rivera, CA, Ortiz, JG. (2006). Changes In AMPA and NMDA Receptor Binding To Cortical Membrane Fractions Cocaine-Treated Rats. Annals NY Academy of Sciences 1074:403-410.
  • Silva, WI, Maldonado, H, Velázquez, G, Rubio-Dávila, M, Miranda, JD, Aquino, E, Mayol, N, Cruz-Torres, A, Jardón, J, and Salgado-Villanueva, I. (2005). Caveolin isoform expression during differentiation C6 glioma cells. International Journal Developmental Neuroscience 23:599-612.
  • Silva, W.I., Maldonado, H., Lisanti, M.P., DeVellis, J., Chompré, G., Mayol, N., Ortiz, M.,  Velázquez, G., Maldonado, M., and Montalvo, J..(1999).   Identification of Caveolae and Caveolin in C6 Glioma Cells.  International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience 17(7):705-14.
  • Silva, W.I., Maldonado, H., Chompré, G., and Mayol, N. (1998). Caveolae:  A new subcellular transport organelle.  Bulletin of P.R. Medical Association 90:30-33.
  • Silva, W.I., K. Benítez, J. Ocasio, L. Martínez, and N. Rosario (1995). Neuropeptide-like immunoreactivities and Carboxypeptidase H activity associated with bovine brain clathrin coated vesicles. Neuropeptides 28:341-9.
  • Mercado, JA, Viera, M, Escalona de Motta, G, Tosteson, T, González, I, and Silva W. (1995).  Differences in toxicity, chromatografic profile and pharmacologic action of Ostreopsis lenticularis extracts revealed modifying the extraction procedure. pgs 321-6. In, Harmful Marine Algal Blooms, P Lassus, G Arzul, Erard, P Gentien and C Marcillou, Editors Technique et Documentation-Lavoisier, Intercept, Ltd, 1995.
  • Sanabria P, Silva WI (1994). Specific 125I Bolton-Hunter Neuropeptide Y binding to intact cultured bovine adrenal medullary microvascular endothelial cells. Microcirculation 1(4):267-273.
  • Altieri, P.I., W.I. Silva, Méndez, H., and H.L. Banchs, (1994). Transient elevation of pulmonary artery pressure induced by sublingual angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors. R. Health Sciences Journal 13(2):125-8.
  • Silva WI, Sanabria P, and Altieri PI (1994). Lack of Interaction of Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors with muscarinic and neuropeptide Y receptors. PR Health Sciences Journal 13(1):25-28.
  • Chiesa, R. Silva, W.I., and Renaud, F.L. (1993). Pharmacological characterization of an opioid receptor in the ciliate Tetrahymena. Journal of Eukaryote Microbiology 40(6):800-804.
  • Rosa, R., W.I. Silva, G.E. Escalona, AD. Rodríguez, JJ. Morales, and M. Ortiz. (1992). Anti-muscarinic activity of a family of C11 N5 compounds isolated from Agelas sponges. Experientia 48:885-807.
  • Silva, WI, and Puszkin, S. (1992). Subcellular transport of muscarinic receptors in neurons. Recent Advances in Cellular and Molecular Biology Vol. 3: 281-291. Peeters Press, Belgium.
  • Miranda, H.F. Silva, W.I., Wolstenholme, W.W., Cuevas, N., Ucros., A., Bustamante, D. and Fernández, E.H. (1991). Pharmacological actions of Substance P in the rat vas deferens. Neuropeptides 18:209-213.
  • Silva, W.I., (1991). Microheterogeneity of the alpha subunits of G proteins in bovine brain clathrin coated vesicles. Japanese Journal of Pharmacology 56: 97-100.
  • Silva, W.I., (1991). Detection of G protein in bovine brain clathrin coated vesicles with common alpha and beta subunits antibodies. Japanese Journal of Pharmacology 56:93-96.
  • Silva WI, Puszkin S (1990). Equilibrium kinetics model for the cGMP-stimulated phosphodiesterase of brain coated vesicles. Bulletin of the Medical Association of Puerto Rico 82:407-411.
  • Santacana, G, Silva, WI (1990). Differential antagonism by amiloride and pirenzepine of the muscarinic receptors of rat tracheal smooth muscle. Bulletin of the Medical Association of Puerto Rico 82(9):403-406.
  • Salaman, A., Román, M. Renaud, F.R. and Silva, W.I. (1990). Effect of chronic opioid treatment on phagocytosis in Tetrahymena. Neuropeptides 16:115-120.
  • Silva, W.I., Kohtz, D.S., S. Puszkin. (1990). Immunoprecipitation of bovine brain membranes enriched in M1 and M2 muscarinic receptors with monoclonal antibody 10C7. Neurosciences Letters 113:89-94.
  • Silva, W.I., Santiago, N., García-Arrarás, J.E., and Carrasquillo, B. (1990). Electroimmunoblotting of Neuropeptide Y: Application to the rat vas deferens.  Neurosciences Letters 109: 191-195.
  • Silva, W.I., W. Wolstenholme, W.W., H.F. Miranda. (1988). Pre-and post-synaptic muscarinic receptors of the rat vas deferens: an update. P.R. Health Sciences Journal 7(2): 105-110.
  • Silva, W.I., Miranda, H.F., Wolstenholme, W.W., Cuevas, N., and Ucros. A (1988). Nueromodulatory actions of Substance P on the muscarinic receptors of the isolated vas deferens of the rat.  Neuropeptides 11(4): 153-157.
  • Miranda, H.F., Silva, W.I., Wolstenholme, W.W., Cuevas, N., and Ucros. A. (1988). Selective antagonism by pirenzepine and N-methyl-scopolamine on muscarinic receptor subtypes of the rat vas deferens.  General Pharmacology 19(3):417-420.
  • Schook, W, C Parker, W Silva, DS Khotz and S Puszkin (1987). Phosphorylation Characteristics of Brain Clathrin-coated vesicle Endogenous Proteins.  Journal of Neurochemistry 49: 434-441.
  • Silva, W, A Andres, W Schook, and S Puszkin (1986). Evidence for the presence muscarinic acetylcholine receptors bovine brain coated vesicles. Journal Biological Chemistry 261: 14788-14796.
  • Silva, W., W. Schook, T.W. MIttag, and S. Puszkin (1986). Cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase activity of bovine brain coated vesicles.  Journal of Neurochemistry 46: 1262-1271.
  • Moskowitz, N., A. Andres, W. Silva, L.Shapiro, W. Schook and S. Puskin (1985). Calcium dependent binding of calmodulin to phospholipase A2 subunits induces enymatic activation. Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics 241 (2): 415-419.


Phone: (787) 758-2525 ext. 1608