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Joseph Mark Savitt, M.D., Ph.D.

Photo of Dr. Joseph Mark Savitt, M.D., Ph.D.

Director, Johns Hopkins Movement Disorder Fellowship Program


Expertise: Botulinum Toxin Injections, Cerebellar Ataxia, Dyskinesia, Dystonia, Movement Disorders, Neurology, Parkinson's Disease , Tremor

Research Interests: Movement Disorders; Neurodegeneration; Ataxia; Ubiquitin; Autophagy; GDNF


Parkinsons and Movement Disorders Center of Maryland
Appointment Phone: 443-755-0030

8180 Lark Brown Road
Elkridge, MD 21075 map
Phone: 443-755-0030



  • Director, Johns Hopkins Movement Disorder Fellowship Program
  • Director, Johns Hopkins Ataxia Center



  • Ph.D, University of Maryland School of Medicine (1994)
  • MD PhD, University of Maryland School of Medicine (1997)


  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Neurology (2001)


  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Neurology (2003)

Research & Publications

Clinical Trial Keywords

Neuroprotection, Botulinum Toxin Injection, Parkinson Disease

Selected Publications

Publications (peer-reviewed)
1. Skofitsch G, Savitt JM, Jacobowitz DM. Suggestive Evidence for a Functional Unit between
Mast Cells and Substance P Fibers in the Rat Diaphragm and Mesentery. Histochem. 1985; 82: 5-8.

2. Skofitsch G, Zamir N, Helke CJ, Savitt JM, Jacobowitz DM. Corticotrophin Releasing Factor-Like Immunoreactivity in Sensory Ganglia and Capsaicin Sensitive Neurons of the Rat Central Nervous System: Colocalization with Other Neuropeptides. Peptides. 1985; 6: 307-318.

3. Johannessen JN, Savitt JM, Markey CJ, Bacon JP, Weisz A, Hanselman DS, Markey SP. The Development of Amine Substituted Analogues of MPTP as Unique Tools for the Study of MPTP Toxicity and Parkinsons Disease. Life Sciences. 1987; 40: 697-704.

4. Fishman PS, Savitt JM. Selective Localization by Neuroglia of Immunoglobulin G in Normal Mice. Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology. 1989; 48(2): 212-220.

5. Fishman PS, Savitt JM. Transsynaptic Transfer of Retrogradely Transported Tetanus Protein-Peroxidase Conjugates. Experimental Neurology, 1989; 106: 197-203.

6. Fishman PS, Savitt JM, Farrand DA. Enhanced CNS Uptake of Systemically Administered Proteins Though Conjugation with Tetanus C-Fragment. J. Neurol. Sci. 1990; 98: 311-325.

7. Savitt JM, Trisler D, Hilt DC. Molecular Cloning of TOPAP: A Topographically Graded Protein in the Developing Chick Visual System. Neuron. 1995; 14: 253-261.

8. Figueiredo DM, Hallewell RA, Chen LL, Fairweather NF, Dougan G, Savitt JM, Parks DA, Fishman PS. Delivery of Recombinant Tetanus-Superoxide Dismutase Proteins to Central Nervous System Neurons by Retrograde Axonal Transport. Experimental Neurology. 1997; 145: 546-54.

9. Von Coelln R, Thomas B, Savitt JM, Lim KL, Sasaki M, Hess EJ, Dawson VL, Dawson TM. Loss of locus coeruleus neurons and reduced startle in parkin null mice. Proc Natl Acad Sci. 2004;101 (29):10744-9.

10. Savitt JM, Jang SS, Mu W, Dawson VL, Dawson TM. Bcl-x is required for the proper development of the mouse substantia nigra. J. Neurosci. 2005; 25: 6721-6728.

11. Von Coelln R, Thomas B, Andrabi SA, Lim KL, Savitt JM, Saffary R, Stirling W, Bruno K, Hess EJ, Lee MK, Dawson VL, Dawson TM. Inclusion Body Formation and Neurodegeneration are Parkin-independent in a Mouse Model of Alpha-Synucleinopathy. J. Neurosci. 2006; 26(14):3685-3696

12. Savitt JM, Dawson VL, Dawson TM. Diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson disease, molecules to medicine. J. Clin. Invest. (2006) 116: 1744-1754.

13. Biskup S, Moore DJ, Celsi F, Higashi S, West AB, Andrabi SA, Kurkinen K, Yu SW, Savitt JM, Waldvogel HJ, Faull RL, Emson PC, Torp R, Ottersen OP, Dawson TM, Dawson VL. Localization of LRRK2 to membranous and vesicular structures in mammalian brain. Ann. Neurol. 2006; 60(5):557-569.

14. The NINDS NET-PD Investigators. A Randomized Clinical Trial of Coenzyme Q10 and GPI-1485 in Early Parkinson Disease. Neurology. 2007; 68(1): 20-8.

15. Luo W, Wickramasinghe SR, Savitt JM, Griffin JW, Dawson TM, Ginty, DD. A hierarchical NGF signaling cascade controls Ret-dependent and Ret-independent events during development of non-peptidergic DRG neurons. Neuron. 2007; 54: 739-754.

16. The Parkinson Study Group. The Mixed Lineage Kinase Inhibitor CEP-1347 Fails to Delay Disability in Early Parkinsons Disease. Neurology. 2007; 69:1480-1490

17. Schwarzschild MA, Schwid SR, Marek K, Watts A, Lang AE, Oakes D, Shoulson I, Ascherio A; Parkinson Study Group PRECEPT Investigators, Hyson C, Gorbold E, Rudolph A, Kieburtz K, Fahn S, Gauger L, Goetz C, Seibyl J, Forrest M, Ondrasik J. Serum urate as a predictor of clinical and radiographic progression in Parkinsons disease. Arch Neurol 2008; 65(6) 716-23.

18. Tsang AKH, Lee Y, Ko HS, Savitt JM, Pletnikova O, Troncoso JC, Dawson, VL, Dawson TM, Chung, KK. S-nitrosylation of XIAP compromises neuronal survival in Parkinson''s disease. PNAS. 2009 106(12) 4900-5.

Activities & Honors


  • American Parkinson Disease Association Cotzias Fellowship, 2005
  • Passano Physician-Scientist Award, 2003 - 2005
  • Herbert Friedberg Parkinson Disease Fellowship, 2003
  • Preziosi Award for Clinical Excellence, chief resident in Neurology, Johns Hopkins, 2001
  • Balder Scholarship Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement, 1997
  • Summa cum Laude, University of Maryland School of Medicine, 1997
  • Alpha Omega Alpha, Medical Honor Society, 1996
  • Phi Kappa Phi, Honor Society, 1994
  • Lange Medical Publications Award, 1997
  • Medical Student Research Awards, 1993 - 1995
  • National Deans List/ B.A. w/ distinction in all subjects, Cornell University, 1986
  • Bausch and Lomb Science Award, 1982


  • American Academy of Neurology, 1998
    Member, movement disorder section member
  • BBA Molecular Basis of Disease, 2008
    Ad Hoc Journal Peer Review
  • Chesapeake Chapter- National Ataxia Foundation
    A-team member
  • Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine, 2008
    Ad Hoc Journal Peer Review
  • J. Neurochemistry, 2007 - 2009
    Ad Hoc Journal Peer Review
  • J. Neuroscience, 2006
    Ad Hoc Journal Peer Review
  • J. Neuroscience, 2008
    Ad Hoc Journal Peer Review
  • Michael J. Fox Community Fast Track Review committee, 2006 - 2009
    Grant Review
  • Michael J. Fox Rapid Response Innovation Awards, 2009
    Grant Review
  • Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, 2009
    Ad Hoc Journal Peer Review
  • Movement Disorder Society, 2002
  • National Ataxia Foundation, 2008
  • Parkinson Study Group Scientific Review Committee Term, 2007 - 2010
    Grant Review
  • Parkinsons disease Society UK, 2007
    Grant Review
  • Parkinsons Study Group, 2005
    member, working group on genetics and environmental risk
  • Society for Neuroscience, 1994

Professional Activities

  • Director Johns Hopkins Ataxia Center, 2008
  • Director Movement Disorder Fellowship Program, 2008
  • Summer Researcher National Institute of Mental Health, NIH, 1984
  • Summer Researcher National Institute of Mental Health, NIH, 1985 - 1986
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