Bio

Education & Certifications


  • Master of Science, McGill University, Psychiatry (2011)
  • Bachelor of Science, McGill University, Psychology (2008)

Clerkships


  • 2014 Autumn - MED 300A Internal Medicine Core Clerkship
  • 2014 Autumn - PEDS 300A Pediatrics Core Clerkship
  • 2014 Summer - MED 300A Internal Medicine Core Clerkship
  • 2014 Summer - PSYC 300A Psychiatry Core Clerkship

Publications

Journal Articles


  • Pittsburgh outcomes after stroke thrombectomy score predicts outcomes after endovascular therapy for anterior circulation large vessel occlusions. Stroke; a journal of cerebral circulation Rangaraju, S., Liggins, J. T., Aghaebrahim, A., Streib, C., Sun, C., Gupta, R., Nogueira, R., Frankel, M., Mlynash, M., Lansberg, M., Albers, G., Jadhav, A., Jovin, T. G. 2014; 45 (8): 2298-2304

    Abstract

    Prognostication tools that predict good outcome in patients with anterior circulation large vessel occlusions after endovascular therapy are lacking. We aim to develop a tool that incorporates clinical and imaging data to predict outcomes after endovascular therapy.In a derivation cohort of anterior circulation large vessel occlusion stroke patients treated with endovascular therapy within 8 hours from time last seen well (n=247), we performed logistic regression to identify independent predictors of good outcome (90-day modified Rankin Scale, 0-2). Factors were weighted based on β-coefficients to derive the Pittsburgh Outcomes After Stroke Thrombectomy (POST) score. POST was validated in an institutional endovascular database (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, n=393) and the Diffusion-Weighted Imaging Evaluation for Understanding Stroke Evolution Study-2 (DEFUSE-2) data set (n=105), as well as in patients treated beyond 8 hours (n=194) and in octogenarians (n=111).In the derivation cohort, independent predictors (P<0.1) of good outcome included 24- to 72-hour final infarct volume (in cm(3), P<0.001), age (years, P<0.001), and parenchymal hematoma types 1 and 2 (H, P=0.01). POST was calculated as age+0.5×final infarct volume+15×H. Patients with POST score <60 had a 91% chance of good outcome compared with 4% with POST score ≥120. POST accurately predicted good outcomes in the derivation (area under the curve [AUC]=0.85) and validation cohorts (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, AUC=0.81; DEFUSE-2, AUC=0.86), as well as in patients treated beyond 8 hours (AUC, 0.85) and octogenarians (AUC=0.76). POST had better predictive accuracy for good and poor outcome than the ischemic stroke predictive risk score (iSCORE).POST score is a validated predictor of outcome in patients with anterior circulation large vessel occlusions after endovascular therapy.

    View details for DOI 10.1161/STROKEAHA.114.005595

    View details for PubMedID 25005445

  • Comparison of Magnetic Resonance Imaging Mismatch Criteria to Select Patients for Endovascular Stroke Therapy STROKE Mishra, N. K., Albers, G. W., Christensen, S., Marks, M., Hamilton, S., Straka, M., Liggins, J. T., Kemp, S., Mlynash, M., Bammer, R., Lansberg, M. G. 2014; 45 (5): 1369-1374

    Abstract

    The Diffusion and Perfusion Imaging Evaluation for Understanding Stroke Evolution 2 (DEFUSE 2) study has shown that clinical response to endovascular reperfusion differs between patients with and without perfusion-diffusion (perfusion-weighted imaging-diffusion-weighted imaging, PWI-DWI) mismatch: patients with mismatch have a favorable clinical response to reperfusion, whereas patients without mismatch do not. This study examined whether alternative mismatch criteria can also differentiate patients according to their response to reperfusion.Patients from the DEFUSE 2 study were categorized according to vessel occlusion on magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) and DWI lesion volume criteria (MRA-DWI mismatch) and symptom severity and DWI criteria (clinical-DWI mismatch). Favorable clinical response was defined as an improvement of ≥8 points on the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) by day 30 or an NIHSS score of ≤1 at day 30. We assessed, for each set of criteria, whether the association between reperfusion and favorable clinical response differed according to mismatch status.A differential response to reperfusion was observed between patients with and without MRA-DWI mismatch defined as an internal carotid artery or M1 occlusion and a DWI lesion <50 mL. Reperfusion was associated with good functional outcome in patients who met these MRA-DWI mismatch criteria (odds ratio [OR], 8.5; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.3-31.3), whereas no association was observed in patients who did not meet these criteria (OR, 0.5; 95% CI, 0.08-3.1; P for difference between the odds, 0.01). No differential response to reperfusion was observed with other variations of the MRA-DWI or clinical-DWI mismatch criteria.The MRA-DWI mismatch is a promising alternative to DEFUSE 2's PWI-DWI mismatch for patient selection in endovascular stroke trials.

    View details for DOI 10.1161/STROKEAHA.114.004772

    View details for Web of Science ID 000335578100041

    View details for PubMedID 24699054

  • Interhospital variation in reperfusion rates following endovascular treatment for acute ischemic stroke. Journal of neurointerventional surgery Liggins, J. T., Mlynash, M., Jovin, T. G., Straka, M., Kemp, S., Bammer, R., Marks, M. P., Albers, G. W., Lansberg, M. G. 2014

    Abstract

    Patients who have successful reperfusion following endovascular therapy for acute ischemic stroke have improved clinical outcomes. We sought to determine if the chance of successful reperfusion differs among hospitals, and if hospital site is an independent predictor of reperfusion.Nine hospitals recruited patients in the Diffusion and Perfusion Imaging Evaluation for Understanding Stroke Evolution Study 2 (DEFUSE 2), a prospective cohort study of endovascular stroke treatment conducted between 2008 and 2011. Patients were included for analysis if they had a baseline Thrombolysis in Cerebral Infarction (TICI) score of 0 or 1. Successful reperfusion was defined as a TICI reperfusion score of 2b or 3 at completion of the procedure. Collaterals were assessed using the Collateral Flow Grading System and were dichotomized as poor (0-2) or good (3-4). The association between hospital site and successful reperfusion was first assessed in an unadjusted analysis and subsequently in a multivariate analysis that adjusted for predictors of successful reperfusion.36 of 89 patients (40%) achieved successful reperfusion. The rate of reperfusion varied from 0% to 77% among hospitals in the univariate analysis (χ(2) p<0.001) but hospital site did not remain as an independent predictor of reperfusion in multivariate analysis (p=0.81) after adjustment for the presence of good collaterals (p<0.01) and use of the Merci retriever (p<0.05).Reperfusion rates vary among hospitals, which may be related to differences in treatment protocols and patient characteristics. Additional studies are needed to identify all of the factors that underlie this variability as this could lead to strategies that reduce interhospital variability in reperfusion rates and improve clinical outcomes.

    View details for DOI 10.1136/neurintsurg-2014-011115

    View details for PubMedID 24662608

  • Early Diffusion-Weighted Imaging and Perfusion-Weighted Imaging Lesion Volumes Forecast Final Infarct Size in DEFUSE 2 STROKE Wheeler, H. M., Mlynash, M., Inoue, M., Tipirneni, A., Liggins, J., Zaharchuk, G., Straka, M., Kemp, S., Bammer, R., Lansberg, M. G., Albers, G. W. 2013; 44 (3): 681-685

    Abstract

    It is hypothesized that early diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) lesions accurately estimate the size of the irreversibly injured core and thresholded perfusion-weighted imaging (PWI) lesions (time to maximum of tissue residue function [Tmax] >6 seconds) approximate the volume of critically hypoperfused tissue. With incomplete reperfusion, the union of baseline DWI and posttreatment PWI is hypothesized to predict infarct volume.This is a substudy of Diffusion and Perfusion Imaging Evaluation for Understanding Stroke Evolution Study 2 (DEFUSE 2); all patients with technically adequate MRI scans at 3 time points were included. Baseline DWI and early follow-up PWI lesion volumes were determined by the RAPID software program. Final infarct volumes were assessed with 5-day fluid-attenuated inversion recovery and were corrected for edema. Reperfusion was defined on the basis of the reduction in PWI lesion volume between baseline and early follow-up MRI. DWI and PWI volumes were correlated with final infarct volumes.Seventy-three patients were eligible. Twenty-six patients with >90% reperfusion show a high correlation between early DWI volume and final infarct volume (r=0.95; P<0.001). Nine patients with <10% reperfusion have a high correlation between baseline PWI (Tmax >6 seconds) volume and final infarct volume (r=0.86; P=0.002). Using all 73 patients, the union of baseline DWI and early follow-up PWI is highly correlated with final infarct volume (r=0.94; P<0.001). The median absolute difference between observed and predicted final volumes is 15 mL (interquartile range, 5.5-30.2).Baseline DWI and early follow-up PWI (Tmax >6 seconds) volumes provide a reasonable approximation of final infarct volume after endovascular therapy.

    View details for DOI 10.1161/STROKEAHA.111.000135

    View details for Web of Science ID 000315447400024

  • A score based on age and DWI volume predicts poor outcome following endovascular treatment for acute ischemic stroke. International journal of stroke : official journal of the International Stroke Society Liggins, J. T., Yoo, A. J., Mishra, N. K., Wheeler, H. M., Straka, M., Leslie-Mazwi, T. M., Chaudhry, Z. A., Kemp, S., Mlynash, M., Bammer, R., Albers, G. W., Lansberg, M. G. 2013

    Abstract

    The Houston Intra-Arterial Therapy score predicts poor functional outcome following endovascular treatment for acute ischemic stroke based on clinical variables. The present study sought to (a) create a predictive scoring system that included a neuroimaging variable and (b) determine if the scoring systems predict the clinical response to reperfusion.Separate datasets were used to derive (n = 110 from the Diffusion and Perfusion Imaging Evaluation for Understanding Stroke Evolution 2 study) and validate (n = 125 from Massachusetts General Hospital) scoring systems that predict poor functional outcome, defined as a modified Rankin Scale score of 4-6 at 90 days.Age (P < 0·001; β = 0·087) and diffusion-weighted imaging volume (P = 0·023; β = 0·025) were the independent predictors of poor functional outcome. The Stanford Age and Diffusion-Weighted Imaging score was created based on the patient's age (0-3 points) and diffusion-weighted imaging lesion volume (0-1 points). The percentage of patients with a poor functional outcome increased significantly with the number of points on the Stanford Age and Diffusion-Weighted Imaging score (P < 0·01 for trend). The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve for the Stanford Age and Diffusion-Weighted Imaging score was 0·82 in the derivation dataset. In the validation cohort, the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was 0·69 for the Stanford Age and Diffusion-Weighted Imaging score and 0·66 for the Houston Intra-Arterial Therapy score (P = 0·45 for the difference). Reperfusion, but not the interactions between the prediction scores and reperfusion, were predictors of outcome (P > 0·5).The Stanford Age and Diffusion-Weighted Imaging and Houston Intra-Arterial Therapy scores can be used to predict poor functional outcome following endovascular therapy with good accuracy. However, these scores do not predict the clinical response to reperfusion. This limits their utility as tools to select patients for acute stroke interventions.

    View details for DOI 10.1111/ijs.12207

    View details for PubMedID 24207136

  • The Dopamine Augmenter L-DOPA Does Not Affect Positive Mood in Healthy Human Volunteers PLOS ONE Liggins, J., Pihl, R. O., Benkelfat, C., Leyton, M. 2012; 7 (1)

    Abstract

    Dopamine neurotransmission influences approach toward rewards and reward-related cues. The best cited interpretation of this effect proposes that dopamine mediates the pleasure that commonly accompanies reward. This hypothesis has received support in some animal models and a few studies in humans. However, direct assessments of the effect of transiently increasing dopamine neurotransmission have been largely limited to the use of psychostimulant drugs, which elevate brain levels of multiple neurotransmitters in addition to dopamine. In the present study we tested the effect of more selectively elevating dopamine neurotransmission, as produced by administration of the immediate dopamine precursor, L-DOPA (0, 100/25, 200/50 mg, Sinemet), in healthy human volunteers. Neither dose altered positive mood. The results suggest that dopamine neurotransmission does not directly influence positive mood in humans.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0028370

    View details for Web of Science ID 000301070200008

    View details for PubMedID 22238577

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