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UR Medicine



Training Program Mentors and Medical Divisions of Specialization

Department of Neurology Center for Translational Neuromedicine

The Center for Translational Neuromedicine focuses on the development of new approaches for treating neurological diseases, primarily using cell and gene therapy. Our emphasis is on using these technologies to mobilize endogenous stem and progenitor cells of the adult brain and spinal cord, as a means of structural repair. In addition, stem cell isolation and genomics analysis, as well as advanced imaging and transplant strategies are also pursued, both for biological assessment and therapeutic modeling. Our disease targets are those attributable to dysfunction or loss of single cell types; for instance, demyelinating disease is studied as a potential target for oligodendrocyte progenitor cell delivery, while Huntington’s Disease is studied as a potential beneficiary of medium spiny neuronal replacement from endogenous stem cells. Conversely, gliomas and gliomagenesis are studied from the standpoint of dysregulated signaling by endogenous glial progenitors.

Steven Goldman, M.D., Ph.D.
Co-Director Center for Translational Neuromedicine

Department of Neurology. Child Neurology

The Child Neurology unit provides diagnosis and comprehensive care to children with any type of neurological disorder, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Batten disease, brain tumors, developmental delay, headaches, leukodystrophy, epilepsy, movement disorders, neurofibromatosis, neurogenetics, multiple sclerosis and neuroimmunology, seizures, and Tourette syndrome. A team of neurologists, a neuropsychologist, nurse practitioners, an RN and a social worker provide interdisciplinary care. The group has a diverse background of training and specialties and boasts one of the finest practices in the region.

Heather Adams, Ph.D.

David Bearden, M.D.

Harris Gelbard, M.D., Ph.D.

Wyatte C. Hall, Ph.D.

Department of Neurology, Epilepsy and Clinical Neurophysiology

The UR Medicine Epilepsy Center offers comprehensive epilepsy care, and is the only NAEC-certified, level 4 Epilepsy Center in the region. Level 4 epilepsy centers have the professional expertise and facilities to provide the highest-level medical and surgical evaluation and treatment for patients with complex epilepsy. The Center strives to improve a patient's life (including employment, driving and personal well-being) by identifying, in children and adults, their particular type of seizure, to develop an individualized medical and/or surgical treatment plan. The experienced epilepsy specialists include pediatric epileptologists, researchers, general neurologists, neurosurgeons, neuroradiologists, neuropsychologists, and specially trained nurse practitioners, nurses and technologists.

Gretchen Birbeck, M.D., M.P.H.

Thomas Wychowski, M.D.

Department of Neurology, Memory Care

The Memory Care Program provides diagnosis, treatment, and care of neurodegenerative conditions that affect the elderly and the aging nervous system. The program specializes in treating older patients with memory loss, dementia, cognitive dysfunction, and Alzheimer’s disease. The Memory Care Program provides assessment, evaluation, and diagnostic workup; ongoing medication management and help with challenging behaviors; recommendations for treatment; information, education, and support for their care partners; referrals for community resources; and opportunities to participate in research studies.

Anton Porsteinsson, M.D.

Giovanni Schifitto, M.D., M.S.

Department of Neurology, Movement Disorders

The Movement Disorders Division provides diagnosis and comprehensive care to people with neurological movement disorders such as Dystonia, Huntington’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease and related parkinsonian conditions, Tremor/Essential Tremor, Tourette’s Syndrome/other tic disorders, tardive, dyskinesia. Movement Disorders has received designation as a Center of Excellence by the Parkinson’s Foundation, Huntington’s Disease Society of America, LBDA (Lewy Body Dementia Association) and Tourette Association of America (TAA) Clinical Research Center of Excellence.

Karlo J. Lizarraga Mendoza, M.D., M.S.
Division Chief

Ray Dorsey, M.D., M.B.A.

Elise Kayson, M.S., Adjunct

Ruth Schneider, M.D.

Chris Tarolli, M.D.

Charles Venuto, Pharm.D.

Miriam Weber, Ph.D.

Department of Neurology, Multiple Sclerosis and Neuroimmunology

The Rochester Multiple Sclerosis Center provides comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic services for multiple sclerosis and related demyelinating disorders and inflammatory disorders of the brain and spinal cord. The center provides comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic services for multiple sclerosis and related demyelinating disorders and inflammatory disorders of the brain and spinal cord. It conducts extensive clinical research activities.

Andrew Goodman, M.D.
Division Chief

Department of Neurology, Neuromuscular Disease

The Neuromuscular Disease Center provides diagnosis and comprehensive treatment of neuromuscular disorders in both adults and children. Within the Neuromuscular Disease Center, There are several specialty clinics, which include the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) Clinic, ALS Clinic, Peripheral/Inherited Neuropathies Clinic, general Neuromuscular Disorders Clinics and Cure SMA Center of Excellence. The Neuromuscular laboratories include the University of Rochester Neurology EMG laboratory and the Neuromuscular Pathology laboratory offering muscle, nerve and skin biopsy (epidermal nerve fiber density) diagnostic services. It offers extensive clinical research activities.

David Herrmann, M.B.B.Ch.
Division Chief

Robert Griggs, M.D.
Co-Principal Investigator Experimental Therapeutics Training Program

Johanna Hamel, M.D.

Chad Heatwole, M.D., M.S.

Rabi Tawil, M.D.

Charles Thornton, M.D.

Department of Neurology, Neuro-Oncology

The Neuro-Oncology division works as part of a multi-disciplinary team of experts to deliver state of the art care for patients with brain and spinal tumors, brain metastases, neurologic complications of cancer and neurofibromatosis. The team includes experts from neuro-oncology, neurosurgery, radiation oncology, neuropathology and neuroradiology and relies on support from nurses, pharmacists, social workers and physical therapists. It has the most active clinical research program in neuro-oncology in upstate New York with clinical trials available for a wide variety of diseases.

Nimish Mohile, M.D.
Division Chief

Department of Neurology, Neuropalliative Care

The Neurology Supportive and Palliative Care Service at the University of Rochester is committed to serving all people affected by neurologic illness. This includes people living with neurologic illnesses, their families, healthcare providers, researchers and trainees. We seek to support the various communities we serve by sharing clinical, educational and research resources. We also seek to inspire them by reminding them of their inherent kindness, wisdom, courage, joy and love. Our core team includes a neuropalliative care physician, a chaplain and a social worker. Every division of this department also includes one or more palliative care champions to ensure that we can adequately meet the needs of the diverse populations we serve. Our faculty are highly motivated to provide the best care possible to the people we serve and are leaders in neuropalliative care research and education.

Benzi Kluger, M.D., M.S.
Division Chief

Robert Holloway, M.D., M.P.H.
Chair of Neurology
Co-Principal Investigator Experimental Therapeutics Training Program

Department of Neurology, Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disorders

UR Medicine's Comprehensive Stroke Center offers world-class treatment and prevention of stroke, including its creation of the region’s only state-of-the art Mobile Stroke Unit, and dedicated Neuromedicine Intensive Care Unit. The program actively partners with community agencies to spread the message about stroke symptoms and prevention. Its nationally recognized, highly trained stroke and neurocritical care teams provide comprehensive care for all types of stroke and cerebrovascular diseases. State of the art neuroimaging capabilities and immediate access to all subspecialists offer patients the most sophisticated medical and surgical treatments necessary for the best outcomes.

Curtis Benesch, M.D., M.P.H.

Ania Busza, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Director Experimental Therapeutics Training Program

Program for Neuromedicine Pain Management

The UR Medicine Pain Management Program was established with the goal to provide the most comprehensive and optimal care in the region by bringing interventional, medical, rehabilitative and psychological approaches to pain management under one roof. Through the combined expertise of a multidisciplinary team of pain specialists, we proudly offer the most advanced treatment options currently available, in a supportive, compassionate environment and are the only comprehensive program of its kind in the region.

Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine

Its mission is to educate the next generation of leaders in anesthesiology and pain management through the provision of state-of-the-art patient-centered care and the discovery of new knowledge that will shape tomorrow's care.

Robert Dworkin, Ph.D.

Jennifer S. Gewandter, Ph.D., M.P.H.

Department of Biostatistics and Computational Biology

The department has a long record of excellence in methodologic and collaborative research and in the education of professionals in and users of statistics.  It has strong collaborative relationships with Anesthesiology, Biomedical Genetics, the Cancer Center, Cardiology, Environmental Medicine, Microbiology and Immunology, Neurology, Orthopedics, Pediatrics, Psychiatry, Public Health Sciences and many other departments, centers and units throughout the School. It is also an important contributor to the University of Rochester Clinical & Translational Science Institute. The Department operates a consulting service staffed by faculty, research associates and assistants, programmers and graduate students that can provide assistance on topics ranging from advice on study design and analysis to complete data management.

Michael P. McDermott, Ph.D.
Associate Chair
Lead Biostatistician in the Experimental Therapeutics Training Program

Peggy Auinger, MS
Department of Neurology

Christopher Beck, Ph.D.

Ashkan Ertefaie, Ph.D.

Department of Emergency Medicine

The Department of Emergency Medicine is a strong unit of dedicated professionals, who are committed to providing safe, high quality, and efficient care to every patient, every day. With its vision to constantly refine and update clinical care it also has a dedicated Center for Emergency Medicine Research and Center for Simulation in Emergency Medicine. The region's largest and most modern emergency facility, housed in Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY, opened its upgraded doors in March 2001. The center has been designated by the New York State Department of Health as a Regional Trauma Center—Level 1, the highest level achievable.

David Adler, M.D., M.P.H.
Director of Emergency Medicine Research