Martha Johnson Gdowski, Ph.D.

Martha Johnson Gdowski, Ph.D.

Contact Information

University of Rochester Medical Center
School of Medicine and Dentistry
601 Elmwood Ave, Box 603
Rochester, NY 14642

Professional Bio

EDUCATION:
1990-1995 Ph.D. in Anatomy, The Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, Hershey, PA
1986-1990 B.S. cum laude in Biology, Gannon University, Erie, PA

EXPERIENCE:
Present - Associate Professor, University of Rochester, NY
2002-2008 Assistant Professor, Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY
2001–2002 Research Assistant Professor, Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY
1997-2001 Research Associate, Department of Physiology, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago, IL and the Evanston Hospital Department of Neurology, Evanston, IL
1995-1997 Research Fellow, Department of Neurosurgery, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, OH



AWARDS:
1997-2001 Ruggles Fellowship in Movement Disorders, Evanston Hospital Department of Neurology.
1996 Recipient of the National Hydrocephalus Foundation Award for presentation of research at the Pediatric Section Meeting of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons.
1994-1995 Academic Year P.E.O. Scholar Award Educational Grant .
1993 Teacher Appreciation Award presented by the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine.
1993 The Pennsylvania State University Graduate Assistant Award for Outstanding Teaching.
1992 Excellence in Teaching Award presented by the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine.

Research Bio

RESEARCH:



Sensorimotor Integration in the Basal Ganglia

Many variables influence the decision of whether and when to initiate, suppress, or alter a movement in progress. These decisions, and the movements that follow, are likely orchestrated using basal ganglia circuitry. We postulate that one role of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) is to arrest highly practiced movements or movements that are in progress in order to allow for the evaluation of the need for an adjustment of the movement command. The decision to generate a voluntary movement is preceded by evaluation of the context in which the movement is to occur. Consider the factors that influence our motivation to pet a purring cat, or to suppress the petting of a dog. Prior experiences providing a cumulative record of positive or negative outcomes are likely to be strong influences in these evaluations. For instance, prior experiences with a family cat may have proven to be pleasing, whereas a menacing encounter with an unfamiliar dog may have had adverse consequences. These are simple examples of how past and current context contribute to the ultimate decision to move. If the neural circuitry that is responsible for these evaluations are impaired, inappropriate inhibition or facilitation of movements will occur. Several lines of evidence suggest that STN function is impaired in Parkinson Disease (PD) and that treatment with dopamine agonists (Levadopa) or STN deep brain stimulation (STN-DBS) may further alter STN function, changing the way in which voluntary movement decisions are made. Work in collaboration with Jonathan W. Mink, MD, PhD and Michelle Burack, MD, PhD examines the effects of drug and deep brain stimulation treatments for PD by quantifying limb movement during the performance of tasks that require sensorimotor integration.

PUBLICATIONS:

Khandwala, V.J., LeBlanc, J.M., Ochocki, B, and Gdowski, M.J. 3-D Motion analysis of planning-related changes in upper limb kinematics resulting from normal aging, Society for Neuroscience Abstracts, 2008.
Suzanne N. Haber and Martha Johnson Gdowski The Basal Ganglia. In: The Human Nervous System, 2nd Edition (George Paxinos and Jurgen K. Mai, eds.). San Diego, Elsevier Science/Academic Press (2004).
Gdowski, M.J., Miller, L.E., Nenonene, E., Parrish, T., Houk, J.C. Context-dependency in the Globus Pallidus Internal Segment During Targeted Arm Movements. Journal of Neurophysiology 85:998-1004, 2001.
Luciano, M.G., Skarupa, D.J., Booth, A.M., Wood, A.S., Brant, C.L., Gdowski, M.J. Cerebrovascular Adaptation in Chronic Hydrocephalus. Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism. 21(3):285-94, 2001.
Johnson, M.J., Ayzman, I., Wood, A.S., Tkach, J.A., Klauschie, J., Skarupa, D.J., McAllister, J.P., and Luciano, M.G. Development and Characterization of an adult model of obstructive hydrocephalus. J. Neurosci. Methods 91(1-2):55-65, 1999.
Mangano, F.T., McAllister, J.P., II, Jones, HC, Johnson, M.J., Kriebel, R.M. The microglial response to progressive hydrocephalus in a model of inherited aqueductal stenosis. Neurological Research 20(8):697-704, 1998.
McAllister, J.P., II, Chovan, P., Steiner, C.P., Johnson, M.J., Ayzman, I., Wood, AS, Tkach, JA, Hahn, J.F. and Luciano, M.G. Differential ventricular expansion in hydrocephalus. European Journal of Pediatric Surgery, Suppl 1:39-42, 1998.
Johnson, M.J. and Alloway, K.D. Cross correlation analysis reveals laminar differences in thalamocortical interactions in the somatosensory system. Journal of Neurophysiology, 75: 1444 57, 1996.

Awards & Honors (National)

National Hydrocephalus Foundation Award for Presenation of Research at the Pediatric Section Meeting of the AANS | American Association of Neurological Surgeons 1996
P.E.O. Scholar Award Educational Grant | Philanthropic Education Organization (P.E.O.) 1994 - 1995

Awards & Honors (Local)

Manuel D. Goldman Prize for Excellence in Teaching 1st Year Medical Students | University of Rochester School of Medicine Class of 2013 2010
First Year SMD Teaching Commendation | University of Rochester School of Medicine Class of 2012 2009
Ruggles Fellowship in Movement Disorders | Evanston Hospital Department of Neurology 1997 - 2001
Teacher Appreciation Award | Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine 1993
Graduate Assistant Award for Outstanding Teaching | Pennsylvania State University 1993
Excellence in Teaching Award | Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine 1992

Recent Journal Articles

Showing the 5 most recent journal articles. 20 available »

2013 Jan 16
Luan H, Gdowski MJ, Newlands SD, Gdowski GT. "Convergence of vestibular and neck proprioceptive sensory signals in the cerebellar interpositus." The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience.. 2013 Jan 16; 33(3):1198-210a.
2009
Khandwala VJ, Burack MA, Mink JW, Gdowski GT, Gdowski MJ. "Measurement of upper limb kinematics and joint angle patterns during deep brain stimulation for parkinson's disease." Conference proceedings : ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society.. 2009 2009:1553-6.
2009
Brown ET, Luan H, Gdowski MJ, Gdowski GT. "Head movements produced during linear translations in unexpected directions." Conference proceedings : ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society.. 2009 2009:7261-4.
2007 Jun 25
Gdowski MJ, Miller LE, Bastianen CA, Nenonene EK, Houk JC. "Signaling patterns of globus pallidus internal segment neurons during forearm rotation." Brain research.. 2007 Jun 25; 1155:56-69. Epub 2007 Apr 19.
2001 Mar
Luciano MG, Skarupa DJ, Booth AM, Wood AS, Brant CL, Gdowski MJ. "Cerebrovascular adaptation in chronic hydrocephalus." Journal of cerebral blood flow and metabolism : official journal of the International Society of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism. 2001 Mar; 21(3):285-94.

Current Appointments

Associate Professor - Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy (SMD) - Primary

Education

PhD | Anatomy | The Pennsylvania State University Hershey Medical Center1995
BS | Biology | Gannon University1990

Post-Doctoral Training & Residency

Research Associate Department of Physiology, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago, IL and the Evanston Hospital Department of Neurology, Evanston, IL; James C. Houk, Ph.D. and Lee E. Miller, Ph.D., Research Advisors 2001
Research Fellow, Department of Neurosurgery, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, OH. Mark Luciano, M.D., Ph.D., Research Advisor 1997