Q&A with Sharon Sha MD, MS: Dr. Sha weighs in on how the brain controls our movements, behavior, thoughts and memories -- and how that changes when things go awry.
Listen to Niushen Zhang, MD, FAHS, Division Chief of the Stanford Headache division and Clinical Assistant Professor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences, discuss lifestyle modifications including aerobic exercise, sleep quality, behavioral therapies, nutrition and other strategies to combat migraine.
The funding, from Cancer Grand Challenges, will help the researchers address difficult problems in cancer prevention, treatment-resistant cancers and therapies for pediatric solid tumors.
Researchers found that damage to the brain’s white matter after COVID-19 resembles that seen after cancer chemotherapy, raising hope for treatments to help both conditions.
Researchers, led by Michael Greicius, MD, MPH have discovered that a rare mutation inherited with the APOE4 gene variant protects against Alzheimer's, shedding new light on ways to counteract high-risk genes for the disease.
Katrin Andreasson discusses how immune cells can cause harmful brain inflammation and contribute to the development of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease.
Excellence in Workplace Award
Congratulations, Rebecca Miller-Kuhlmann, MD, on your Excellence in Workplace Award! This award is presented to a physician whose efforts demonstrably improves the “practice life” and satisfaction of providers in the delivery of clinical care. This individual strives to enhance work-life balance and highlights the importance of wellness and fulfillment at work.
Congratulations, Juliet Knowles, MD, PhD, on your 2022 McCormick Faculty Award. This award was established to support the advancement of women in medicine and/or medical research directly, or by supporting the mentoring, training and encouragement of women pursuing the study of medicine, in teaching medicine, and engaging in medical research.
Even a mild SARS-CoV-2 infection can cause inflammation that disrupts neural communication, says Stanford neurologist Michelle Monje. Her concern is that Covid-19 may leave millions dealing with cognitive problems, from a loss of mental sharpness to lapses in memory, that prevent them from returning to their previous level of function.
Scientists have been trying to unravel the mysteries of why memory diminishes with age for decades. Now they have discovered a possible remedy — cerebrospinal fluid from younger brains.
Drs. Juliet Knowles, John Huguenard and Michelle Monje led studies which demonstrated that activity-dependent myelin plasticity, which occurs in the setting of seizures, can promote further seizure progression. This is the first demonstration of maladaptive myelination: activity-dependent myelination that promotes a disease process.
A new initiative on brain resilience will study the causes of cognitive decline – what may be done to prevent, delay, or reverse the decline – and what goes right for those who keep their cognitive abilities intact. Based at the Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute, this scientific endeavor is being launched by a $75 million gift from Nike founder Philip H. Knight, MBA ’62, and his wife, Penny. Tony Wyss-Coray, the D. H. Chen Distinguished Professor II of Neurology and Neurological Sciences at Stanford, has been appointed the inaugural director of the Phil and Penny Knight Initiative for Brain Resilience.
Neurologist Michelle Monje harnesses passion and purpose as she works to cure a devastating childhood cancer.
Stanford scientists in the Paul George Lab have developed a device that delivers and electrically stimulates stem cells to promote stroke healing.
In an ongoing multicenter NIH study of pregnancy outcomes in women with epilepsy, Dr. Meador and colleagues found that breastfeeding while taking antiseizure medications did not have any adverse effects on the child’s cognitive function at age 3 years old. This may be in part because the concentrations of antiseizure medications are much lower in these child than their mothers. Given the multiple known benefits of breastfeeding to the mother and child, Dr. Meador encourages women with epilepsy to breastfeed.
Dravet's syndrome is a severe epilepsy of childhood with difficult to treat seizures, cognitive abnormalities and premature death. Professor David Prince, Feng Gu and colleagues in Neurology and Neurological Sciences showed that they can limit seizures and death in a mouse model of Dravet's using a small molecule that corrects a basic abnormality in brain nerve cells. Results may have significant translational impact.
Q&A with Tony Wyss-Coray about the lab's interest in exploring the role of the brain's vasculature in Alzheimer's disease and the implications of new findings for the search for better therapies.
While everyone has different migraine triggers, stress tops the list. What can you do to manage that stress? Niushen Zhang, MD, clinical assistant professor & chief of the Headache Division at Stanford discusses ways to get started.
Stanford neuroscientists Karl Deisseroth and Michelle Monje-Deisseroth talk about finding love on campus and how they approach the career-family puzzle together.
Research from early clinical trials of pediatric glioma patients shows that altered immune cells can fight the deadly brainstem tumor.
NIH U19 grant award
Congratulations to Drs. Michelle Monje, Mike Lim, and Reena Thomas for their successful U19 grant award from the NIH. In a collaborative effort with the Harvard brain tumor program, this grant will allow for the evaluation of multiple novel therapeutics for patients afflicted by glioblastoma brain tumors. The correlative studies proposed will also advance precision medicine and our scientific understanding of the disease to ultimately improve treatment of adult glioblastoma brain tumors. This grant also means that Stanford has become a member of the prestigious new National Cancer Institute “Glioblastoma Therapeutic Network”, a national clinical trial consortium for adult brain tumors that will increase the cutting edge clinical trial options for Stanford patients.
A new study found that part of the Epstein-Barr virus mimics a protein made in the brain and spinal cord, leading the immune system to mistakenly attack the body’s nerve cells.
ACNS Distinction in Service Award
Congratulations, Dr. Courtney Wusthoff, the inaugural recipient of the ACNS Distinction in Service Award! This award was created by the American Clinical Neurophysiology Society (ACNS) to recognize a mid-career ACNS member who has demonstrated outstanding service to the field of clinical neurophysiology at the institutional or national level.
2022 ACNS Young Investigator Travel Award
Thomas Hirschauer MD, PhD, Clinical Neurophysiology/Intraoperative Neuromonitoring Fellow at Stanford, received the ACNS Young Investigator Travel Award for his work "Multimodal Intraoperative Neurophysiologic Monitoring for the Detection of Cerebral Ischemia During Carotid Endarterectomy"
Second cohort of CZ Biohub Investigators includes 33 Stanford faculty
Dr. Katrin Andreasson was selected from nearly 700 applicants as a Chan Zuckerberg Biohub Investigator. The Investigator Program, open to faculty members at Stanford University, UC San Francisco, and UC Berkeley, awards $1 million in unrestricted funds over five years to each Investigator, with the goal of building engaged, collaborative communities of Bay Area scientists to undertake creative and innovative research that will help solve the biggest challenges in biomedicine.
In a Stanford study, sedentary mice appear to benefit from another same-aged mouse’s exercise - if they receive injections of its blood.
In recognition of National Epilepsy Awareness Month (November), The American Neurological Association spoke with Kimford J. Meador, MD, FANA, FAAN, FAES, FRCPE, for this month's ANA Q&A.
Michelle Monje, MD, PhD was elected as a NAM member - considered one of the highest honors in the fields of health & medicine recognizing individuals who demonstrate outstanding professional achievement & commitment to service.
In the past few decades, researchers have devised methods to manipulate the brain and central nervous system to help the paralyzed move, enable the blind to see, and move closer to restoring lost cognitive abilities.
On a mission to defend more stroke patients from a life of disability, Stanford Medicine colleagues drive research that extends the window for effective intervention.
Dr. Greicius and colleagues in anesthesia (Igor Feinstein and Martin Angst), have shown that p-tau181, a blood-based Alzheimer’s biomarker, increases significantly during surgery and rises to levels typically seen in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. The p-tau181 levels slowly decline after surgery but remain elevated in some patients for at least two days after surgery. The study paves the way for future work that will try to link molecular changes induced by surgery to the longer term post-operative decline that occurs in some surgical patients.
The neuroscientist and pediatric neuro-oncologist is being recognized for her work to understand healthy brain development and create therapies for a group of lethal brain tumors.
Stanford Health Care – ValleyCare's stroke program is recognized for its commitment to meeting rigorous national standards of stroke care.
Stanford University researchers who study three-dimensional structures of biological molecules, aggressive brain cancers and how to heal diseased hearts are among 33 scientists from 21 institutions announced as new Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigators. The Stanford faculty members are Kristy Red-Horse, associate professor of biology at the School of Humanities and Sciences, Rhiju Das, associate professor of biochemistry, and Michelle Monje, associate professor of neurology.
Chinyere Iweka, Faculty Mentor: Katrin Andreasson
Brielle Ferguson, Faculty Mentor: John Huguenard
Stanford Postdoc JEDI Champion Awards are a recognition of current Stanford University postdoctoral scholars who have championed initiatives, activities, or efforts that advance justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion at Stanford and beyond.
The Good Planet Foundation has pledged to establish an endowed fund within the Stanford University Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences. Endowment income will be used to support the Asad Jamal and Iqbal Farrukh Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center. The Good Planet Foundation has also made a gift to establish the Asad Jamal and Iqbal Farrukh Professorship, with Dr. Michael Greicius designated as the inaugural holder.
Dunlevie Family University Fellow in Undergraduate Education
Congratulations to Paul Graham Fisher, MD, Professor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences for his reappointment to another 5 year term as Dunlevie Family University Fellow in Undergraduate Education. Fisher teaches the popular undergraduate classes “Cancer Epidemiology” and “The Human Organism” in Human Biology. He was the Bing Director of Human Biology from 2012 through 2019.
What role does self-reported sleep duration play in brain amyloid-β accumulation, cognitive performance, and lifestyle factors in the context of healthy aging? In 4417 older adults, short sleep duration (6 hrs or less) was associated with higher levels of amyloid. Short and long (9+ hrs) sleepers had different patterns of cognitive performance, suggesting short vs long sleep represent distinct phenotypes in aging.
A new study by Kimford Meador, MD and his colleagues answers the question "What is the association between fetal exposure to antiseizure medication (ASM) and subsequent cognitive abilities of the child?"
A detailed molecular analysis of tissue from the brains of individuals who died of COVID-19 reveals extensive signs of inflammation and neurodegeneration, but no sign of the virus that causes the disease.
Kelley M. Skeff GME Professionalism Award
Congratulations, Nick Murray, MD for winning the inaugural Kelley M. Skeff GME Professionalism Award! This award, named in honor of Dr. Kelley Skeff (prior Stanford internal medicine residency program director and internationally known leader in education), recognizes high levels of excellence and compassion in professional behavior through collaborative work with colleagues, faculty and staff from across the institution. Congrats, Dr. Murray!
Oscar Salvatierra Award
Congratulations to Jeffrey Dunn, MD, inaugural award winner of the Oscar Salvatierra Award for Exceptional Service to Stanford medical students and the Stanford University School of Medicine. Dr. Dunn built the Neurology clerkship into a model of national excellence and the highest rated clerkship in the SOM for more than a decade, inspiring more than a thousand medical students during his tenure.
Congratulations to Reena Thomas, MD, PhD for receiving the Stanford Award for Excellence in Promotion of Diversity and Societal Citizenship. This award was established to recognize individuals that have made significant contributions to the promotion of the principles of diversity and societal citizenship at the Stanford School of Medicine.
Subgroup disparities such as sex and race are more significant among patients with migraine, according to the results of a recent study presented at the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) 2021 Virtual Meeting. Q&A with Robert Cowan, MD, FAAN, Clinical Professor of Neurology, on Sex and Race Disparities in Migraine Patients.
Complex brain surgery performed at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford cures severe epilepsy in a 7-year-old boy.
In a manuscript that is now online first at Neurology: Clinical Practice, a team led by Clinical Assistant Professor Jessica Walter asks patients and clinicians what works best about teleneurology.
Toddlers whose mothers took certain epilepsy drugs during pregnancy are unlikely to have development delays, according to a new study led by Kimford Meador, professor of neurology and neurological sciences.
In a new study, Dr. Niushen Zhang and her colleagues found that people with chronic migraines appear six times more likely to experience rebound headaches if they use cannabis, as compared with migraine patients who don't use the drug.
Scientists have identified a key factor in mental aging and shown that it might be prevented or reversed by fixing a glitch in the immune system’s front-line soldiers.
When Reena Thomas, MD, PhD, associate dean for diversity in medical education, came up with the idea for Diversity Week, the concept was simple: Unite several of Stanford Medicine’s diversity and inclusion events into one week of livestreamed talks. The topics the week would address, however, were anything but simple.
Michelle Monje, MD, PhD has been awarded the Falling Walls Foundation “top 10 breakthroughs of the year” in the life sciences for her discovery of synapses between neurons and brain cancer cells and the role of neuronal activity in malignant glioma progression. Congratulations, Michelle!
Neurohospitalist Fellow Dr. Shefali Dujari analyzed the quality of. an AAN Quality Measure and found room for improvement.
Following the murder of George Floyd in May and the rise of the nationwide movement Black Lives Matter, neurologists in academic medical centers have doubled down on initiatives around anti-racism—from developing more inclusive curricula to building out programs that encourage earlier recruitment of diverse students in medicine and neurology.
Stanford scientists identified brain circuitry that plays a role in the mysterious experience called dissociation, in which people can feel disconnected from their bodies and reality.
Stanford Professor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences, Lawrence Steinman, MD, discusses what we can learn from COVID-19 in kids in a new paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Armed with personal protective equipment (PPE), telemedicine tools and a shared passion to deliver the best patient care they can, neurologists working at the satellite Stanford ValleyCare hospital in Pleasanton are finding ways to adapt to the new normal of medical care amid a pandemic.
Brielle Ferguson, PhD, a co-president of the Stanford Black Postdoc Association and a current postdoc in the John Huguenard Lab in Neurology, has helped to organize a social media project called Black in Neuro Week to amplify contributions from Black scientists to neuroscience, neurology and related fields.
What scientists have long called the "blood-brain barrier" seems to be more of a "blood-brain filter" and like most filters, this one seems to get both a bit clogged up and a bit leaky with advancing age. New research by Tony Wyss-Coray, PhD in Nature shows that hundreds of proteins that occur naturally in healthy young mice's blood routinely gain entry into the mice's brains -- provided the proteins present the proper credentials.
In a new piece, Dean Lloyd Minor discusses how racial inequities have a lasting impact on our health. He outlines three priorities for academic medical centers to bring about change and recognize the importance of social determinants of health.
Led by Clinical Assistant Professor Laurice Yang, MD, MHA, a team of Stanford neurologists and colleagues from the Evaluation Sciences Unit have described the experience of rapidly launching teleneurology in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The autonomic team at Stanford Neurology is launching a patient registry to investigate "long-haul" symptoms of SARS-CoV-2, many of which resemble symptoms that are common in other post-viral autonomic syndromes the team is used to seeing, such as postural tachycardia syndrome (POTS) and chronic fatigue syndrome. The team hopes to leverage these data to both better understand the long-term effects of SARS-CoV-2, but also autonomic disorders such as POTS, a condition that is alternatively debilitating to patients and dismissed by physicians due to lack of clear mechanisms. COVID-19 may provide such a mechanism to explore.
The National Institute on Aging has awarded a $15 million grant to the Stanford Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, which investigates Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases and related disorders. The center is led by director Victor Henderson, professor of health research and policy and of neurology and neurological sciences, and associate director Katrin Andreasson, professor of neurology and neurological sciences.
A new study shows that repetitive negative thinking, a mechanism proposed to underlie several known psychological Alzheimer's disease risk factors, is itself associated with cognitive decline as well as amyloid and tau deposition on PET scans. Jacob Hall, MD, Clinical Assistant Processor of Neurology, comments on the study's findings.
Hospitals across the United States are seeing fewer stroke patients coming to their facilities for care — and a new paper ties that trend to the coronavirus pandemic. The paper, published Friday in the New England Journal of Medicine as a letter to the editor, suggests that the number of patients in the United States undergoing imaging for stroke evaluation has decreased by 39% since before the pandemic.
Neurologist: The brain is complicated, largely unknown
In the latest 1:2:1 podcast hosted by Paul Costello, senior communications strategist and advisor, Sharon Sha, clinical associate professor of neurology and neurological sciences, discusses ways to improve brain health and counteract genetic factors for memory loss. Full Story
Fifteen Stanford faculty members are among the 276 new members elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, which honors exceptional scholars, leaders, artists and innovators engaged in advancing the public good. We congratulate Thomas Rando, professor of neurology and neurological sciences, on this achievement. Full Story
Hospital halls are usually bustling with patients’ friends and family, but are empty during visitor restrictions enacted to keep patients and healthcare workers safe. In a commentary for Neurology, neurohospitalist fellow Dr. Tarini Goyal explored how neurologists can still keep patients and family connected to the medical team. Full Story
Longevity Gene May Protect against a Notorious Alzheimer’s Risk Gene
Stanford Medicine researchers have found that a common variant in one gene reduces risk of Alzheimer's disease in those at high genetic risk from a second gene. Full Story
Exercise restores youthful properties to muscle stem cells of old mice
The researchers also identified a molecular pathway involved in turning back the clock on the cells. Drugs that could manipulate the pathway might be an effective substitute for exercise, they suggest. Full Story
New brain implant device could record activity in thousands of neurons
A team of Stanford University researchers led by Jun Ding, PhD, has created a device that, once implanted in the brain, could help record movies of electrical neural activity in thousands of individual neurons. The device, described in a paper published March 20 in Science Advances, could be used for research or with prosthetics, and is capable of recording more data while being less intrusive than other options. Full Story
Stanford community gathers resources in support of COVID-19 testing
As the second weekend of March approached and consumers raided grocery shelves for toilet paper, labs also scrambled to keep a sufficient stock of key supplies -- in their case, those needed to test patient samples for the virus causing COVID-19. Emails searching for spare materials landed in the inboxes of researchers, and the Stanford community sprang into action. Full Story
Old human cells rejuvenated with stem cell technology
Old human cells can become more youthful by coaxing them to briefly express proteins used to make induced pluripotent cells, Stanford researchers and their colleagues have found. The finding may have implications for aging research. Full Story
Residents are still mastering medicine. But can they fix health care problems too?
Stanford neurologists have launched a quality improvement curriculum with an eye on the patient care process -- how it can be improved to deliver better results for patients while saving money. Full Story
Neurology care at Stanford inspired patient to return as a nurse
When Isabelle Yi was in 3rd grade she was treated at Stanford Hospital for an AVM. "I remember feeling very cared for as a patient," Yi said. So, in college she decided she wanted to switch her focus to nursing. Today she works as a nursing coordinator in neurology. "It was a dream come true." Full Story
Eponyms are here to stay
Calls to remove eponyms—diseases or tests named for individual physicians—from neurology have been made for decades. In a new study published in Neurology, Stanford medical student Jimmy Zheng and Carl Gold, MD, MS, Clinical Assistant Professor of Neurology found that the use of eponyms persists in the literature and among neurology trainees. Full Story
Suspicion: Why are virus-targeting immune cells sniffing around Alzheimer’s patients’ brains?
In a new study published in Nature, Stanford neuroscientist Tony Wyss-Coray, PhD, and his colleagues report the startling discovery of virus-obsessed immune cells in autopsied brains of deceased Alzheimer's patients, and in cerebrospinal fluid (which bathes our brains) of living individuals diagnosed with the disease. Full Story
With rates of Alzheimer’s disease on the rise, there are simple things you can do to improve your memory. Sharon Sha, MD, MS, clinical associate professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences and clinical core co-leader of the Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, provides tips on how to boost your brain power in this piece. Full Story
Blood protein signatures change across lifespan
Protein levels in people’s blood can predict their age, a Stanford study has found. The study also found that aging isn’t a smoothly continuous process. The work of senior author Tony Wyss-Coray, professor of neurology and neurological sciences and co-director of the Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, Benoit Lehallier, instructor of neurology and neurological sciences, is highlighted in this piece. Full Story
A new study demonstrates that there are normal physiological responses to cognitive stimuli in non-lesional epileptic tissue unless there is ongoing spontaneous high-frequency oscillation. Josef Parvizi, MD, PhD, professor of neurology and neurological sciences, is quoted in this article. Full Story
Protein levels in people’s blood can predict their age, a Stanford study, lead by Tony Wyss-Coray, PhD, professor of neurology and neurological sciences, the D. H. Chen Professor II and co-director of the Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, has found. The study also found that aging isn’t a smoothly continuous process. Full Story
More than 65 million people around the world are affected by epilepsy. Choosing from over 14,000 different treatment scenarios to decide which drugs might be best for a child or a loved one can be daunting. Robert Fisher, MD, PhD, professor of neurology and neurological sciences at the Stanford University School of Medicine and director of the Stanford Epilepsy Center is the principal investigator of the AI epilepsy trial. The new trial’s goal is to help determine the precision of epilepsy treatment options incorporating many “real world” variables. Full Story
Stanford neuro-oncologist Michelle Monje teamed up with Craig Thomas at the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences and Kathy Warren from NCI (now at DFCI) to perform high-throughput drug screening of patient-derived cultures of diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, the leading cause of brain tumor-related death in children. The study, led by MD PhD student and future neurologist Grant L. Lin, uncovered a promising two-drug combination that shows benefit in preclinical studies and will advance to clinical trial soon. The mechanism of drug-drug synergy was determined to be metabolic collapse, highlighting a key avenue for future strategies in this lethal childhood brain cancer. Stanford neurologist Kati Andreasson’s lab contributed importantly to the metabolic mechanistic studies. Full Story
The effects of dementia vary and the disease doesn’t have a single cause, but there are a number of factors that could increase an individual’s risk of developing dementia. Learn more about risk factors and prevention. Full Story
Teams of scientists, engineers and clinicians from across Stanford’s campus will join forces, share expertise and access laboratories with state-of-the-art equipment, thanks to an expansive new research complex opening this month. “This building, which includes 24 faculty labs and a sandbox for testing experimental devices, will help foster new levels of interaction that will benefit a much larger community.” Neurology scientists moving to this complex include Tony Wyss-Coray, John Huguenard, and Michael Greicius. Full Story
Gerald Grant, MD, Neurosurgery Division Chief, and pediatric epilepsy neurologists with the Packard Children’s Pediatric Epilepsy Center, gives kids with uncontrolled epileptic seizures a powerful option to explore when medications are not working by using the ROSA robot. Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital is the first hospital in Northern California to have ROSA. Full Story
Can you have a stroke and not know it? Unfortunately, yes. It is a phenomenon called a silent stroke or, more formally, a silent cerebral infarction. Investigators at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and Stanford University want to learn more about silent strokes and their role in brain health, including dementia. Full Story
Transient bursts of high-frequency electrical activity in epileptic brain tissue can impair cognition even when no seizure is occurring, Stanford scientists have found. Full Story
Lee received the NIH Director’s Pioneer Award, which was established to provide funding for investigators at all career levels with bold and innovative research projects. Lee plans to use her award to develop mechanogenetics, a novel method that enables noninvasive, precisely targeted spatial and mechanical perturbation of living cells within the mammalian brain, and a functional ultrasound imaging technology that can monitor whole-brain function in animals that are awake and active. Full Story
During a stroke, 1.9 million neurons die every minute. Stanford Health Care cut half an hour off its stroke treatment time, helping patients. Full Story
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, vascular dementia is the second most common cause of dementia but it can be difficult to diagnose. Dr. Marion Buckwalter, associate professor of neurology and neurosurgery, discusses possible causes and how to reduce the risk of getting dementia. Full Story
Tumors called high-grade gliomas wire themselves into the healthy brain, receiving and interpreting electrical signals from normal neurons, a Stanford study has found. Full Story
The Stanford Multiple Sclerosis Center announces "Project BIG," the Brain, Immune and Gut Research Initiative to find the cause and cure of Multiple Sclerosis. Project BIG is designed to overcome the inherent difficulties of discovering the mechanisms of MS by inverting traditional paradigms. Using a broad interdisciplinary collaborative model with a tight interface between clinicians and scientists, Project BIG will seek to identify the patient's unique "immuno-fingerprint" as a step toward the true practice of precision medicine. Nearly one million men and women are afflicted with MS nationally. Full Story
Neurohospitalist Fellow Dr. Tarini Goyal, colleagues in the Department of Surgery, and Clinical Assistant Professor Dr. Carl Gold have published an article in Neurology titled "Education Research: Understanding Barriers to Goals of Care Communication for Neurology Trainees." Now available online, the study describes the perspectives of Stanford Neurology residents regarding patient-level, resident-level, and systems-level barriers to effective goals of care discussions. Full Story
Sharon Sha, MD, clinical associate professor of neurology and neurological sciences, was appointed as a member of the Alzheimer’s Prevention and Preparedness Task Force for the State of California by Governor Gavin Newsom and Task Force Chair Maria Shriver. Full Story
New research shows that anti-cholinergic drugs, used to treat conditions from depression to Parkinson’s disease, may increase older adults’ risk of getting dementia by 50%. Dr. Frank Longo, Chair of the Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences, comments on the study’s findings. Full Story
A mentorship program at Stanford is helping to prevent burnout and promote wellness to neurology residents, fellows, and faculty. Early response from surveys of the participants indicate it may be working. Full Story
In a recent segment on Stanford Radio's The Future of Everything, hosted by Stanford professor Russ Altman, MD, PhD, Monje discussed developments in the field, including immunotherapy as a promising new approach to the treatment of brain cancer in children. Full Story
Investigators at the Stanford University School of Medicine have shown that suppressing the activity of a small set of immune cells in mice after they've had a stroke substantially reduces their brain damage, boosts their survival rate and improves their motor performance days later. Full Story
The recipients of the School of Medicine’s 2019 Spirit Award are Jackie Bautista and Kelly Adams. Bahij Austin and Loto Reed received the Inspiring Change Leadership Award. Full Story
The seven-story, 824,000-square-foot facility will accommodate advances in medical technology, increase capacity and meet new earthquake safety standards. Full Story
Impeding VCAM1, a protein that tethers circulating immune cells to blood vessel walls, enabled old mice to perform as well on memory and learning tests as young mice, a Stanford study found. Full Story
Albers, director of the Stanford Stroke Center, has been working to understand the mechanisms governing strokes for nearly 30 years. Thanks to that dogged work, Albers hit gold in 2018 with the release of data from a large multisite clinical trial, DEFUSE 3. Full Story
Sixty medical students presented a broad array of projects at this year’s medical student research symposium. Med Scholars mentor, Reena Thomas, MD, PhD, clinical assistant professor of neurology and neurological sciences, discusses how supporting students is one of her favorite aspects of the work. Full Story
Variability in Prion Disease–Related Safety Policies Text: PGY4 Dr. Katherine Werbaneth, medical student Praveen Tummalapalli, and Clinical Assistant Professor Dr. Carl Gold have published an article in The Neurohospitalist titled "National Variability in Prion Disease-Related Safety Policies for Neurologic Procedures." Now OnlineFirst ahead of print, the study describes the lack of consistent safety protocols for neurosurgical procedures and lumbar punctures for patients with prion diseases at top hospitals in the United States. Full Story
Strokes often have a devastating impact on something most of us rely heavily on in our daily lives – our hands. Now, Stanford researchers are collaborating on a vibrating glove that could improve hand function after a stroke. Full Story
Brain cells called microglia serve as the brain’s garbage crew, scarfing up bits of cellular debris. But their underperformance in aging brains contributes to neurodegeneration. Now, a possible workaround? Full Story
Mitchell Miglis, a clinical assistant professor in the department of neurology at Stanford University and a sleep medicine specialist at the Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine discusses REM behavior disorder or RBD. Full Story
Michelle Monje, associate professor of neurology at Stanford University School of Medicine, explores immunotherapy – an alternative to current drugs that can induce long-lasting damage – as a promising new approach to the treatment of brain cancer in children. Full Story
The Stanford Neurohospitalist Fellowship launches on July 1, 2019. Despite a major demand for neurohospitalists, this fellowship is one of only a handful in the country focused on training leaders in the field. An article in Neurology Today describes the growth of the neurohospitalist field and the current training opportunities. Full Story
Stanford researchers have found that transient changes in the numbers and activation levels of a handful of circulating immune cell types can predict the likelihood of dementia one year after a stroke. Marion Buckwalter, associate professor of neurology and neurosurgery, and Brice Gaudilliere, assistant author of anesthesiology, preoperative and pain medicine, are senior authors of the study. Full Story
In this article, Emmanuel During discusses how sleep deprivation can lead to psychosis, which often starts with visual hallucinations. Full Story
A rare genetic disorder left an infant with debilitating seizures and developmental delays. The medicines weren't working, but the family and their team of doctors at Stanford Children's Health, including Dr. Brenda Porter and Dr. Gerald Grant, refused to give up hope. Full Story
A research team led by James R. Doty Professor of Neurosurgery and Neurosciences, Ivan Soltesz, has successfully built a virtual model of sizable sections of the hippocampus, to better understand learning and memory. Full Story
In addition to the hallmark motor symptoms of Parkinson disease (PD), non-motor symptoms have a significant impact on patients' quality of life. Emmanuel During, MD, Clinical Assistant Professor, discusses sleep disturbances in this interview with Neurology Advisor. Full Story
Three types of cells in the brain’s white matter show interwoven problems during the cognitive dysfunction that follows treatment with the cancer drug methotrexate, Stanford neuroscientists have found. Full Story
In a new study, led by Stanford neuroscientists John Huguenard, PhD, and Sally Kim, PhD, and then-graduate student Huong Ha, PhD, showed that zinc is required for the proper behavior of two related proteins, Shank 2 and Shank 3, that hang out at most synapses in the brain. Among their duties, Shank 2 and Shank 3 can reshuffle the subunits of a receptor that dots the receiving end of most nerve cells. This receptor gets tripped off by an incoming chemical signal called glutamate. Full Story
Small clusters of cases of infectious paralysis are occurring in young children across North America. A Stanford pediatric neurologist, Dr. Keith Van Haren, is working to understand the disease. Full Story
When It Matters Most: Bicyclist Finds New "Roads" to Conquer After Traumatic Brain Injury
Brett’s cross-country bicycling trip from Santa Barbara to South Carolina ended abruptly, 1,000 miles short of its final destination. While crossing through Oklahoma, Brett fell, ending his dreams of completing a coast-to-coast charity ride, and nearly ending his life. Brett spent eight days in the ICU, where a team of trauma and brain injury specialists managed his inter-cranial pressure, blood pressure, temperature and seizures to minimize the cascade of secondary injuries that can occur after a traumatic brain injury. Full Story
Time Magazine released a list of 50 people transforming health care in 2018. Tony Wyss-Coray, professor of neurology and neurological sciences, was recognized for his work that found stitching together young and old mice to join their blood systems improved the older mice’s cognition. Full Story
A new Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute series, #BrainsBehindTheInstitute, highlights the stories and experiences that inspire faculty researchers, including Department of Neurology's Dr. Marion Buckwalter. Full Story
Stanford will accelerate the pace of discovery about the human brain and advance innovative, interdisciplinary brain science thanks to nearly $250 million in recent gifts from philanthropists from the United States, Asia and Europe. In recognition of the lead gift from alumna Clara Wu Tsai and her husband, Joe Tsai, the Stanford Neurosciences Institute is changing its name to the Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute. Full Story
Neurologist Thomas Rando, MD, PhD, together with senior research scientist Ling Liu, PhD, and pathologist Gregory Charville, MD, PhD, have pinpointed mitotic catastrophe as a cause of death of old muscle stem cells. These cells are less able than their younger counterparts to repair muscle damage. They've also shown that this "death by dividing" is the result of a malfunction of the cross-talk that occurs between the stem cells, nestled along the lengths of muscle fibers, and their neighboring cellular support team known as the stem cell niche. Full Story
Michelle Monje, MD, PhD has been announced as a 2018 Awardee of the prestigious NIH Director’s Pioneer Award. The Pioneer Award supports individual scientists of exceptional creativity who propose highly innovative and potentially transformative approaches to major challenges in the biomedical or behavioral sciences towards the goal of enhancing human health. Dr. Monje received the award based on her laboratory research which discovered that neuronal activity critically regulates the progression of glial malignancies, and now seeks to leverage a deeper understanding of neuron-glioma interactions to develop novel therapeutic strategies for these lethal brain cancers. Past recipients in our department include Tony Wyss-Coray, PhD (2015) and Thomas A. Rando, MD, PhD (2005). Our department is fortunate for its exceptional research milieu that has contributed to it being the only department of neurology in the US with three Director’s Pioneer awardees Full Story
Brandon Seminatore, MD, was born at Stanford 28 years ago at just 29-weeks gestation, and was cared for in the NICU for over a month. Now, Brandon is a 2nd year pediatric neurology resident at Packard Children's working side-by-side with the nurse who took care of him. Full Story
A new study gives Stanford researchers hope that they may have solved a big problem plaguing gene therapy: the prospect of an autoimmune attack. Full Story
The FDA has approved the use of an implanted device that releases periodic electrical discharges in the brain to counteract seizures in people with epilepsy. In an interview, neurologist Robert Fisher described the technology and Stanford’s role in testing the device. Full Story
Stanford researchers discovered that a receptor that binds to nicotine and to clusters of beta-amyloid molecules is found on certain types of immune cells that can act as suppressors and regulators of the immune system. Full Story
As a PhD student in Bioengineering doing clinical research on Parkinson’s disease, Johanna found herself at a cross section between patients, clinicians, and researchers. With gratitude for this rich experience, she used her resources and mentorship as a Creativity in Research Fellow (with the Stanford Design School) to create a website for story exchange to increase empathy between the research and patient populations. In partnership with NPR StoryCorps she collected audio interviews from Parkinson’s patients and translated fellow Parkinson's researcher’s stories into playful cartoons, upon being inspired by Peter Dunlap-Sohl’s graphic novel, “My Degeneration.” Full Story
Neurology resident, JoJo Yang, discusses the use of certain cannabinoid-based drugs in select pediatric patients Full Story
Guided by Reena Thomas, MD, PhD, clinical assistant professor of neurology and neurological sciences and of neurosurgery, second-year medical student Judith Pelpola investigated therapies to reduce the recurrence of glioblastoma. Full Story
Stanford Neurology residents and fellows presented a total of 20 posters at the 2018 Stanford Resident/Fellow Quality Improvement & Patient Safety Symposium, more than any other department. The focus of these projects ranged from quality improvement education to oral chemotherapy safety to resident wellness initiatives. Two posters received awards as Top 10 abstracts in the symposium. Full Story
In a survey study, PGY3 resident Dr. Katherine Werbaneth has found high variability in policies for prion disease precautions at top US neurology programs. The results were presented in a platform session at the AAN annual meeting on April 25. Dr. Werbaneth has worked on this project with Stanford medical student Praveen Tummalapalli, Chief Resident Lironn Kraler, and Clinical Assistant Professor Carl Gold. Their abstract was awarded an Abstract of Distinction, one of 24 such abstracts among more than 3000 submitted to the AAN annual meeting. Full Story
Bereaved mother Mycah Clemons raised money for a summer scholarship at Stanford for research on diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma. The move sparked a series of experiments that have led to a possible treatment for the tumor. Full Story
A robotic assistant helped doctors detect seizures deep in Gracin Hahne’s brain without having to open her skull or even shave her head. Full Story
In mice, a fatal brainstem tumor was cleared by injecting it with engineered T cells that recognized the cancer and targeted it for destruction. The Stanford discovery is moving to human trials. Full Story
Gracin Hahne was just an infant when she experienced her first seizure, caused by benign tumors - called tubors - in her brain. By the time she was 3 years old, the seizures had gotten out of control, no longer responding to medication and significantly affecting her cognitive development. Her medical team at Stanford used an innovative procedure using a robot to remove the tubors and eliminate the cause of Gracin's seizures for good. Full Story
In December 2017 researchers from across the country joined in the first-ever comprehensive network of research centers to conduct LBD clinical trials, provide community outreach, and expand professional continuing medical education. Representing 24 of medicine’s most prestigious academic medical research centers, these Research Centers of Excellence will help to streamline and standardize LBD science while connecting patients and families with the latest opportunities to participate in LBD clinical trials. Full Story
By converting brain waves into sound, even non-specialists can detect “silent seizures” – epileptic seizures without the convulsions most of us expect. Full Story
Researchers like Marion S. Buckwalter, MD, PhD and her colleague Maarten Lansberg, MD, PhD are working on how to prevent dementia in stroke survivors, nearly half of whom develop the condition in the first decade after a stroke. Others are working on new ways to deliver drugs right where they're needed in the brain, developing ways to stimulate the brain's recovery with magnetic fields, and building robotic devices tailored to help individual stroke patients walk more easily. With those and other developments on the horizon, the future for stroke survivors could be bright. Full Story
Young, resting neural stem cells have large protein clumps often associated with neurodegeneration. As stem cells age, the aggregates inhibit their ability to make new neurons, Stanford researchers say. Full Story
A team of researchers and physicians at Stanford has developed a new software that recently led to the change in stroke guidelines. Certain patients can now be treated up to 24 hours after suffering a stroke. Full Story
In a small safety trial based on preclinical work by a Stanford researcher, participants receiving blood plasma infusions from young donors showed some evidence of improvement. Full Story
An ongoing project in the Huguenard Lab aims to understand how brain cells regulate their outgoing signals. The lab’s research specifically focuses on a brain structure called the thalamus and its connections — via nerve cells — to the cortex. Full Story
In a multicenter study led by Stanford researchers, the number of stroke patients who died or required confinement to nursing homes was nearly cut in half, the biggest improvement seen in any stroke-related trial to date. Full Story