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Movement Disorders 

Program Duration: 2–5 years

MovementDisorder1
MovementDisorder2 MovementDisorder3

Above: Focal dystonia



The fellowship program in movement disorders has the goal of training neurologists for an academic career with expertise in both clinical management and human-based research in movement disorders.

The general mission of the Human Motor Control Section (HMCS) is to understand the physiology of normal human voluntary movement and the pathophysiology of different movement disorders. The members of the Section work together on the different projects, each bringing special expertise to the tasks. The main techniques employed are transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), electroencephalography (EEG), neuroimaging with positron emission tomography (PET) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and other techniques of clinical neurophysiology. A special interest now is the process of movement initiation and volition. Part of the group’s work is to translate physiological insights into therapies, and Fellows will participate in ongoing clinical trials in Parkinson’s disease (PD), dystonia, and essential tremor.

The Parkinson’s Disease Clinic follows a population of patients to provide research opportunites to investigators at NIH for various studies. Research is also originated in the Clinic itself. A special interest is in neuroimaging as a biomarker for PD and early phase clinical trials. There is a deep brain stimulation program in association with the Surgical Neurology Branch that includes various disorders as well as a focus on PD. One of the fellowship positions has a special focus on the PD research including deep brain stimulation.

The Botulinum Toxin Clinic includes a large variety of patients that can benefit from therapy with botulinum toxin; it also has an educational focus.

The Fellows gain from exposure to the breadth of research in movement disorders and a wide variety of clinical pathology and management modalities. Upon completion of the fellowship, it is expected that the graduates will demonstrate competitive expertise in selected research techniques, basic and clinical research, clinical management of movement disorders, deep brain stimulation management, and botulinum toxin injections.

Area of Current Research

Parkinson’s disease
Dystonia
Essential tremor
Tourette’s syndrome
Psychogenic movement disorders
Principles of motor control and motor learning
Other movement disorders

Faculty

Mark Hallett, M.D., Chief, HMCS, hallettm@ninds.nih.gov

Silvina Horovitz, Ph.D., Staff Scientist, HMCS (Neuroimaging), horovits@mail.nih.gov

Barbara Karp, M.D., Affiliate, Botulinum Toxin Clinic, karpb@ninds.nih.gov

Katharine Alter, M.D., Affiliate Physiatrist, Botulinum Toxin Clinic, kalter@mail.nih.gov

Kareem Zaghloul, M.D., Affiliate, Neurosurgeon, Deep  Brain Stimulation Program, zaghloulka@mail.nih.gov