Stanford Neurosurgery News Center

Stanford Neurosurgery News

PBS News Hour reports on how new technology is allowing people with paralysis to type, just by thinking about it.

Stanford Neurosurgeon, Dr. Jaimie Henderson, tells PBS News Hour about new brain-computing interface technology that is allowing people who are paralyzed to communicate. 

Antibody shown to be safe and effective against five kinds of pediatric brain tumors

Stanford researchers have developed antibodies shown to safely and effectively target five aggressive pediatric brain tumors in new study.


Stem Cell Research Holds the Promise of a Sea Change in Medicine

With the opening of the new Stanford Laboratory for Cell and Gene Medicine, the vast promise of stem cell research grows closer to finding novel treatments for a wide range of maladies, including neurodegenerative disorders.


New Brain-Computer Interface Enables People with Paralysis to Communicate Fast and Accurately

A new clinical research publication led by Stanford’s Jaimie Henderson, MD, demonstrates efficacy of using brain-computer interface to enable people with paralysis to type at fastest most accurate levels ever reported.


Neural Circuit Revealed- Clarifies How Certain Stimuli Affect Pain

Stanford neurosurgeon Gregory Scherrer, PhD, recently published a study revealing a neural circuit in the brain that helps explain how the body uses enkephalins to manage pain in response to certain stimuli, such as stress or meditation.


Breakthrough Treatment for Essential Tremor Now Offered at Stanford

A new, non-invasive treatment using MRI-guided ultrasound is now offered at Stanford to reduce severity of tremors caused by Essential Tremor, a common but little-known brain disorder.


The Rest of America Should Get Concussion Care Like NFL Players

Dr. Jamshid Ghajar, Director of Stanford’s Concussion and Brain Performance Center, comments on how the NFL has advantages over the rest of the nation when it comes to concussion care, and how his research is helping to standardize care for all Americans.


Too Many Medical Trials Are Moonshots In the Dark

In this brilliant Washington Post op-ed, Stanford professor and 2013 Nobel Prize winner Thomas Südhof says that too many clinical trials fail without a fundamental understanding of underlying disease biology. He’s right. The path to cures begins in our basic science laboratories — to find out what goes wrong when someone gets sick, we need to know everything we can about how that illness works.


Researchers identify source of opioids’ side effects

Stanford researchers said they have identified the receptors to which opioid drugs bind to produce tolerance and increased sensitivity to pain, as well as a commercially available drug that limited those side effects in mice.


Gary K. Steinberg, PhD '79, MD '80 receives the J.E. Wallace Sterling Lifetime Achievement Award in Medicine

This honor was first conferred by the Stanford Medicine Alumni Association in 1983. The award is named for the former Stanford University president who, in 1953, recommended that the Stanford Medical School be moved from San Francisco to join the main education and research Stanford campus in Palo Alto.

Dr. Steinberg's extraordinary advances impacting medical science and education in the realms of neurosurgery, experimental research investigation, and long-term dedication to chairing the Department of Neurosurgery make him a most deserving recipient of this award.


“We know very little about the brain”: Experts outline challenges in neuroscience

Around forty students, scientists, and community members recently gathered for the Stanford Chinese Family and Faculty Club’s quarterly speaker series kickoff to learn more.


Cyberknife used to treat rare condition in pediatric patient

Kendall Kemm, a pediatric stroke patient with arteriovenous malformation (AVM), a rare blood defect, is being treated at Stanford. Grateful for the care she received at Stanford and Lucile Packard Children's Hospital, Kendall formed Kendall’s Crusade, a nonprofit orgranization aimed to provide financial assistance to families affect by AVM.


On October 25, Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) hosted a "Medicine Responds to Addiction II" symposium, to promote the integration of core curriculum and core competencies for addiction medicine into medical education and training, and it works explore the development of Centers of Excellence in Addiction Medicine.  

Those in attendance included Deans and senior leadership of US Medical Schools, Leaders of Medical Boards and Medical Associations, Philanthropic Foundations and Federal Partners.

Laurence Katznelson, MD, Professor of Neurosurgery speaks in this video beginning at 3 hours 2 minutes 38 seconds.

Curious about concussions? A Stanford researcher reflects on current research, outstanding questions

Jessica Little, PhD, director of clinical research and operations at the Stanford Concussion and Brain Performance Center, discusses concussion research and Stanford’s clinical study of teenage athletes.


Stanford  Cureus Channel

Progress in neurosurgery happens on many fronts. Some advances start in research laboratories, but far more stem from serendipitous observations in the clinic and operating room. Recording and curating such “observational medical science” has for more than 200 years been the mission of traditional scientific journals. However, the Internet is opening up new opportunities for communicating this observational science and Stanford neurosurgery’s is a pioneer in this effort through its Cureus “Academic Channel”; in many ways this online publication serves like a dedicated journal for the department, whose presence enables the much more rapid communication of clinical science, especially results from cutting edge procedures. Therefore a great way to appreciate some of the clinical advances being driven by Stanford Neurosurgery is to regularly check out our Cureus Academic Channel.


On genetics, immunology and autism: A Q&A with Stanford’s Theo Palmer

Stanford researcher Theo Palmer, PhD, has long sought to understand how genetic and environmental factors shape brain function. His team is investigating a genetic change that may predispose children for autism by changing the immune system of pregnant women, and I recently spoke with him about this work and how it affects the study and treatment of autism.


Officer in the Spotlight: Odette Harris, MD, MPH, FAANS

In the Fall 2016 addition of Neurotrauma & Critical Care News, Dr. Harris answers questions about TBI.

The Second International Conference of Aging and Disease (2016 ICAD)

The second International Conference of Aging and Disease was held at Stanford September 30-October 3, 2016. Heng Zhao, PhD, Associate Professor of Neurosurgery at Stanford University, was the Chair of the local organizing committee.  Lloyd B. Minor, MD, the Dean of the Stanford University School of Medicine, lead off the event with the Welcome and Introduction, followed by 2 days of speakers from around the world.  Topics included: Healthspan Intervention, Aging Metabolism and Disease, Stem Cells Aging and Disease, Age-Related Neurodegenerative Disease,  Aging DNA Damage and Cancer,  Public Support for Aging and Age-Related Disease Research, and Genetics System Aging and Disease, Immunie System Aging and Disease and Again and Cardiovascular Disease. The purpose of the conference was for scientists, scholars, and students from universities and the research institutes all around the world to present ongoing research activities, and hence to foster research relations. With over 150 attendees, we think they suceeded.

Meet the 2017 Endocrine Society Laureate Award Winners

Congratulations to Dr. Katznelson, Professor of Neurosurgery and Medicine (Endocrinology) at the Stanford University Medical Center, Lucile Salter Packard Children's Hospital and the Palo Alto Veteran's Affairs Health Care System.  Dr. Katznelson was selected by the Endoncrine  Society for their 2017 Outstanding Educator Award which recognizes exceptional achievement as an educator in the discipline of endocrinology and metabolism.


FDA weighs crackdown that could shut hundreds of stem cell clinics

The Food and Drug Administration is considering whether to regulate stem cells like drugs, which would require clinics to go through an approval process before treating patients. However, research on stem cell treatments are starting to bear fruit.  A recent Stanford study showed injecting modified, human, adult stem cells directly into the brains of chronic stroke patients proved not only safe but effective in restoring motor function.


Technology for typing with brain signals could allow paralyzed people to communicate

Researchers are testing a technology that could help people with movement disabilities communicate.


Common molecular mechanism of Parkinson’s pathology discovered in study

Intracellular defects that lead to cells’ failure to decommission faulty “power packs” known as mitochondria cause nerve cells to die, triggering the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.


Supporting new innovations for spinal cord injury

Eleven years ago, a car accident left Dennis Chan with severe injuries to his spinal cord at the L2 vertebrae and to peripheral nerves. While devastating, Chan chose to look at his situation with hope.


Stanford scientists create ‘guided chemotherapy missiles’ that target cancer cells and spare healthy ones

Latching chemotherapy drugs onto proteins that seek out tumors could provide a new way of treating tumors in the brain or with limited blood supply that are hard to reach with traditional chemotherapy.


Stem Cells Shown Safe, Beneficial for Chronic Stroke Patients

Injecting modified, human, adult stem cells directly into the brains of chronic stroke patients proved not only safe but effective in restoring motor function, according to the findings of a clinical trial led by Dr. Gary Steinberg.


Why become a doctor? How Stanford’s Gary Steinberg became drawn to neurosurgery

New stem cell treatment may provide hope for San Ramon Valley HS grad Jake Javier

An Electrical Dialogue with the Brain | Kai Miller | TEDxUCSD

Dr. Kai Miller, a native Californian and graduate of UC San Diego, works as a neurosurgical resident at Stanford University. His neurosurgical emphases are deep brain stimulation, eloquent cortex brain tumors, and epilepsy. He talks about how recent research in neuroscience is like a “dialogue with the brain”, and how we can utilize this to treat diseases and recover from injuries.

New Technology Can Make Brain Surgery Safer

Stanford neurosurgeon Melanie Hayden, MD, can now use intraoperative MRI and feedback from an awake patient to make tumor resection safer and more effective. In this video, Hayden, an assistant professor of neurosurgery, explains how neurosurgeons at the Stanford Brain Tumor Center now apply this higher level of MRI imaging during surgery to immediately visualize whether enough of the tumor has been removed or if they should continue removing tumor cells.

Innovative Stanford Neurosurgical Procedures to Restore Function after Neurologic Injury

Stanford neurosurgeons are pioneering two innovative techniques, stem cell transplantation and brain-computer interface, that offer promise to improve the outcome for patients suffering from neurologic injury and other disorders.

Keeping football tough but safe by spotting concussion- Stanford Neurosurgery's Dr. Jam Ghajar Weighs in

Many sports are dangerous, but few are dangerous by design.

For years the powers-that-be behind American Football tried to hide it, but it became too serious. The more it was studied, the taller the pile of evidence became. To succeed in a game where brute force is part of the DNA, you must throw in all your body can manage. And for decades of American Football, that meant your head too.

Now researchers have discovered that long-term head injuries among professional American Footballers are not just possible, they are probable.

A 2015 study looked at brains belonging to deceased ex-NFL players who had agreed to be part of the study before they died. They found a pattern: of the 91 brains examined, 87 of them showed the players suffered from the same condition.

Six things ‘Concussion’ the movie won’t tell you (but brain experts will)

For sports lovers, the Christmas Day film from writer-director Peter Landesman has troubling implications for a major U.S. sport. But many of half a dozen concussion experts interviewed by MarketWatch for this article were dismayed by the movie’s science, and concerned that viewers could walk away with inaccurate, and even damaging, information. Here are six points about “Concussion” courtesy of concussion experts, not Hollywood. Stanford Medicine's Dr. Ghajar weighs in. 

Student in Stanford Neurosurgery Lab Selected as a Finalist in the 2016 Intel Science Talent Search (Intel STS)

Anin Sayana, a student in Dr. Albert Wong's lab has been selected as a finalist in the Intel STS for his work in Accelerating Cancer Immunotherapy: Optimization of an EGFRvIII-based Cancer Vaccine via Computationally-Aided Analysis of Proteasome Processing for Improved Glioblastoma Prognosis. Sayana, a Stanford Neurosurgery lab member since 2014, currently attends Bellarmine College Preparatory School in San Jose.

Intel STS alumni have made extraordinary contributions to science and hold more than 100 of the world’s most coveted science and math honors, including the Nobel Prize and the National Medal of Science.


A Strange Relativity: Altered Time for Surgeon-Turned-Patient

Paul Kalanithi, MD, was a Stanford neurosurgeon who was diagnosed with lung cancer in his mid-30s. He wrote a popular op-ed for The New York Times in early 2014 on confronting mortality. Here, he reflects on his changing perception of time as doctor, patient and new father. He died at 37 on March 9. The Stanford community mourns his loss.

Neuro Information Technology: Can We Take Control of Our Brain Circuit | Jin Hyung Lee | TEDxKFAS

When our brain circuits fail, the outcome is life shattering. We lose our ability to remember, walk, talk, or even breathe. While we now live in a world where we can access information and make contact with people everywhere in real time, currently available solutions to brain disease are extremely limited. Neuro information technology expert Dr. Jin Hyung Lee shares a moving personal story that inspires her to find cures for brain disease and help us take control of our brain circuit.

Research sheds light on how neurons control muscle movement

New research involving people diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease sheds light on how individual neurons control muscle movement in humans — and could help in the development of better brain-controlled prosthetic devices.


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