Three new tenured faculty in the Department of Neurology in the School of Medicine were approved by the executive committee of the Board of Trustees on Sept. 12.
Yoland Smith, who was appointed associate professor of neurology, will hold a joint appointment in the Neuroscience Division of the Yerkes Primate Center. Smith, currently an assistant professor in the Department of Anatomy at Laval University in Quebec, was recruited to Emory to participate in neurobiological research and the graduate program.
After receiving his Ph.D. in neurobiology from Laval University in 1988, Smith trained for three years as a postdoctoral fellow at the MRC Anatomical Neuropharmacology Unit at Oxford and in the Department of Neurology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.
Smith's research focus is the neuronal microcircuitry of the basal ganglia, in particular the connectivity and neurochemical organization that allows a better understanding of the normal functioning of these important brain structures and of their dysfunction, as in Parkinson's disease, according to Michael Johns, executive vice president for health affairs. "Additionally, he has been ranked in the top 5 percent of neuroanatomists worldwide and his publications are widely recognized as landmarks in their field," said Johns.
Smith has been an active participant in training students in physiotherapy, occupational medicine and graduate neurobiology. He has been recognized as "an enthusiastic, hardworking and demanding teacher at both the post-graduate and undergraduate level," according to Johns.
Scott T. Grafton, who was appointed associate professor of neurology, will serve as associate director of the PET Center in the Department of Neurology.
Grafton received his medical degree from the University of California in 1984, completed his internship at the University of Arizona in internal medicine, and then completed residencies in neurology at the University of Washington and in nuclear medicine. Grafton holds board certification in both neurology and nuclear medicine. He has taught at UCLA and the University of Southern California, where he served as associate director of the USC PET Imaging Sciences Center.
As a young investigator, Grafton received the prestigious William H. Oldendorf Award and the S. Weir Mitchell Award. "Grafton's research centers on the application of imaging technology to the functioning of the nervous system, including visual motor procedural learning, motor imagery and functional mapping," said Johns. "He has been referred to as probably the best person working in the field of functional neuroimaging in the United States and as one of the most brilliant young scientists interested in motor system and expert in brain imaging. His more recent work on pallidotomy patients will compliment the ongoing studies of Mahlon DeLong, chair of the Department of Neurology, and others at Emory."
Grafton holds a Clinical Investigator Development Award and has spoken at numerous international meetings and has published numerous journal articles.
John D. Glass, who was appointed associate professor of neurology, will serve as director of the Adult Neuromuscular Service in the neurology department.
Glass received his medical degree from the University of Vermont College of Medicine in 1985. He completed his residency in neurology at the Johns Hopkins Hospital, where he was chief resident his last year. He held a two-year research and clinical fellowship in the Neuropathology Laboratory at Hopkins, where he received the Peter Lampert Young Investigator's Award from the Society for Experimental Neuropathology. He joined the Hopkins faculty in 1991.
"Glass is internationally recognized for his research in two independent areas," said Johns. "His basic science focus is on the mechanisms involved in the transport of molecules and cellular components through nerve cells and the mechanisms involved in degeneration of nerve cell processes leading to neuropathies and degenerative diseases of the nervous system. His clinical research focuses on HIV-related diseases of the nervous system, including dementia."
He has published numerous journal articles and holds a Clinical Investigator Development Award from the NIHF and a grant from the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Foundation. "Glass is also known as an outstanding teacher who is highly respected by residents and faculty," said Johns.