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Faculty

Co-Directors

Dr. Deanna Saylor

Deanna Rae Saylor, M.D., M.H.S.

Projects: Uganda and Zambia

Dr. Deanna Saylor is an assistant professor of neurology and a neuro-infectious disease and neuroimmunology specialist with special interest in the neurological complications of HIV infection. She has a master's degree in health sciences in clinical epidemiology and is involved in a variety of epidemiological and clinical research projects both in the U.S. and in sub-Saharan Africa. Dr. Saylor also specializes in global health and neurology. She has previously lived and worked in Kenya and has ongoing research in the neurological complications of HIV infection in Rakai, Uganda. 

Dr. Saylor is currently a Fulbright Fellow based full time in Zambia where she is a visiting lecturer at the University of Zambia School of Medicine and a visiting consultant at the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka, Zambia. She has begun the first inpatient neurology service in Zambia at the University Teaching Hospital and will serve as the program coordinator for the country’s first post-graduate training program in neurology, which will begin in October 2018. She has several ongoing research projects in Zambia focused on the epidemiology and outcomes of neurologic disease and neurological medical education. Her current research includes projects in stroke, neurosyphilis, neuro-HIV, demyelinating disorders, autoimmune encephalitis, medical education, and epidemiology and outcomes research in neurological disease in general. Dr. Saylor welcomes undergraduate students, medical students, neurology residents, and neurology fellows to visit for clinical or research electives. Both short- and long-term research electives are available. 

Dr. Nicoline Schiess

Nicoline Schiess, M.D., M.P.H.

Projects: United Arab Emirates

Dr. Nicoline Schiess is an associate professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins University. An expert in neuroinfectious and neuroimmunologic diseases, she works globally treating patients and conducting epidemiologic and clinical research. She was previously the director of the Nervous System and Special Senses section of the Genes to Society Course for Johns Hopkins School of Medicine's first year medical students. She also teaches medical students internationally, having directed and taught in courses in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates.

In 2010 Dr. Schiess received a Fulbright Scholar Award to teach neuroscience and start a sub-specialty multiple sclerosis clinic in the United Arab Emirates. Since then she has worked internationally in many settings including the Middle East, Haiti, Zambia and Europe.

Other Faculty

Dr. Juan Carhuapoma

J. Ricardo Carhuapoma, M.D., F.A.H.A.

Projects: Peru, Mexico, Puerto Rico

Dr. Juan Carhuapoma is an associate professor of neurology, neurosurgery, and anesthesiology and critical care medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His areas of clinical expertise include critical care medicine, intracerebral and subarachnoid hemorrhage, and intracranial hypertension. He earned his M.D. from the Programa Academico de Medicina. He completed his residency in neurology at Henry Ford Hospital and performed a fellowship in neurological critical care at Johns Hopkins. Dr. Carhuapoma is a member of several professional associations, including the Neurocritical Care Society, the American Heart Association Stroke Council and the Society of Critical Care Medicine. He is currently working on end-of-life issues and is affiliated with the Neurological Institute of Peru. He has collaborations in Peru, Mexico and Puerto Rico. 

Dr. Fatima Ismail

Fatima Y. Ismail, M.B.B.S.

 

Dr. Fatima Ismail is an assistant professor of pediatric neurology and developmental medicine at the College of Medicine and Health Sciences, UAE University and an adjunct assistant professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. She received her bachelor of medicine and bachelor of surgery (M.B.B.S.) degree from UAE University and completed pediatric residency training at the Harriet Lane program at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Dr. Ismail completed advanced training in the Johns Hopkins/Kennedy Krieger conjoint residency in Pediatric Neurology and Neurodevelopmental Disabilities.

Dr. Ismail is a diplomate of the American Board of Pediatrics. She is a member of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), the Child Neurology Society (CNS), the American Neurological Association (ANA) and the International Child Neurology Association (ICNA).

Dr. Ismail’s clinical interest is in improving the neurodevelopmental outcomes of children with acute brain injury (stroke and traumatic brain injury) by implementing brain protective measures and protocols in the neonatal and pediatric intensive care units, and establishing a comprehensive multidisciplinary neuroplasticity-informed neurodevelopmental follow-up programs.

Dr. Ismail’s research focus is on understanding changes in structural, functional and effective connectivity in the developing brain as a function of maturation and following injury using non-invasive brain stimulation (transcranial magnetic stimulation/transcranial direct current stimulation) coupled with EEG and advanced neuroimaging techniques (diffusion tensor imaging and functional MRI). She is also interested in identifying critical and sensitive periods of brain development at neural networks level that will enable the design of time-sensitive neurostimulation-based interventions to improve neurodevelopmental outcomes in children with neurological and neurodevelopmental disorders.

 

Dr. Gregory Krauss

Gregory Krauss, M.D.

Projects: Eastern Caribbean, Zambia

Dr. Gregory Krauss is a professor of neurology with a special interest in epilepsy and seizures. He is involved in epilepsy care in the Eastern Caribbean, funded by the International League Against Epilepsy. His work was published in Epilepsy and Behavior with local authors and he contributed to the nine-country Eastern Caribbean formulary, improving access to newer generic formulations as well as access to imaging and EEG in the region. (These efforts helped residents of Granada when a tidal wave destroyed the island's only computed tomography machine.) Dr. Krauss is also involved in pediatric neurology programs in Zambia, supporting outreach training and care in both east and west Zambia. Opportunities are available to students, residents and fellows in both the Eastern Caribbean and Zambia.

 

Dr. Carlos A. Pardo-Villamizar

Carlos A. Pardo-Villamizar, M.D.

Projects: Colombia

Dr. Pardo is a clinical neurologist and neuropathologist, and principal investigator of the Neuroimmunopathology Laboratory at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He received his medical training, medical doctorate and neurology training at the Universidad Industrial de Santander (Bucaramanga, Colombia) and Instituto Neurologico de Colombia in Bogota, Colombia. He pursued further training in the U.S.A. and completed residency training in clinical neurology and postdoctoral fellowship training in clinical and experimental neuropathology at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. He is a neurologist at the JHU Division of Neuroimmunology and Neuroinfectious Disorders and director of the Johns Hopkins Transverse Myelitis Center, the first clinical center established for the study of TM in the United States of America. 

As a clinician, Dr. Pardo focuses on neuroinfectious  and neuroimmune disorders such as multiple sclerosis, neurosarcoidosis, myelitis and viral disorders of the nervous system. Dr. Pardo's research interest and laboratory work focuses on studies of the immunopathologic and molecular mechanisms of associated with neuroimmune disorders and neuroinfectious disorders; the roles of cytokines and chemokines in pathogenic mechanisms of neurological disorders; studies of biomarkers of neuroimmunologic disease in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and blood; and animal models of neuroimmunologic disorders. 

Dr. Pardo is the principal investigator of the Neuroviruses Emerging in the Americas Study (NEAS), a multicenter study established in collaboration between Johns Hopkins and nine university-based hospital centers in Colombia to investigate neurological complications associated with arbovirus infections. This collaborative research effort involves clinicians, virologists and epidemiologists focused on understanding emerging infections with neurological complications including dengue, chikungunya and zika viruses. He has ongoing collaborative research in several areas of South America, including Colombia and Brazil, and welcomes the involvement of medical students, residents, and fellows either on a short- or long-term basis.

 

Ned Charlton Sacktor, M.D.

Ned Charlton Sacktor, M.D.

Projects: Uganda

Dr. Sacktor’s research studies have focused on the epidemiology, clinical characterization and treatment of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND). He performed one of the first comprehensive studies of the clinical characterization of HIV dementia in Africa, reporting, among other findings, that HIV+ individuals with subtype D infection may have a greater frequency of HIV dementia than HIV+ individuals with subtype A infection in Uganda. His work developed the International HIV Dementia Scale (IHDS), a new screening tool which can be used by non-neurologist personnel to quickly identify HIV patients at risk for HIV dementia. He also compared the utility of the IHDS with other screening tests for HAND in collaboration with investigators in Cape Town, South Africa. The IHDS is now being used to screen for HIV dementia throughout the world including multiple countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, China, India, and Brazil. 

Dr. Sacktor has also published on the effect of antiretroviral therapy (ART) on HIV-associated cognitive impairment in Uganda.  These studies have established the utility of ART as a primary treatment for HAND, and ART has now become the standard treatment for both advanced HIV infection and HIV-associated cognitive impairment nationally and internationally. 

He is currently evaluating neurological complications (e.g., HAND, neuropathy, headache) in HIV+ individuals in rural Uganda, and analyses from our 5-year cohort in Rakai District, Uganda are ongoing. Medical students, residents and fellows are welcome to contribute to these analyses. If the research study is refunded, clinical rotations and summer research projects will become available in 2019. 

Dr. Monique Stins

Monique F. Stins, Ph.D.

Projects: Zambia

Dr. Stins studies how activation of the blood brain barrier (BBB) endothelium (lining of the blood vessels in the brain) by microbes can affect the underlying brain cells, such as astrocytes and neurons. She is particularly focused on the responses of BBB to Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes as occurs in cerebral malaria and has an ongoing collaboration in Lusaka, Zambia. 

Dr. Jose Suarez

Jose Suarez, M.D.

Projects: Latin America

Dr. Suarez is a Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, Neurology, and Neurosurgery and Director of the Neurocritical Care Division at Johns Hopkins. Dr Suarez areas of research interest include subarachnoid hemorrhage, acute ischemic stroke, cerebral edema, and outcomes in neurocritical care. He has also been a member of DSMB for several Phase III clinical trials including the NINDS-funded TBI in Latin America Lifespan Analysis and a member of the Executive Committee for the NINDS-funded ATACH II Trial. Dr Suarez is the principal investigator for the HANAK Project, which is looking to establish a high-altitude research center in Quito, Ecuador.

Dr. Victor Urrutia

Victor C. Urrutia, M.D., F.A.H.A.

Projects: Latin America

Dr. Victor Urrutia is an associate professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He received his medical degree from the University of Panama School of Medicine and completed his neurology training at Drexel University College of Medicine. After his residency training, he completed fellowship training in neurocritical care and acute stroke at Drexel University College of Medicine and became a faculty member in the neurocritical care and acute stroke division. He then returned to Panama for two years where he organized two hospitals for acute stroke treatment with IV thrombolytic therapy and was the first to treat patients with IV thrombolytic therapy for acute stroke in Panama. 

Dr. Urrutia has pursued his research interests in acute stroke therapy as principal investigator for several multicenter trials. He completed the SAIL ON trial of IV tPA for wake-up stroke up to 4.5 hours from awakening. He has developed two pathway studies: OPTIMIST, a novel clinical monitoring protocol for post-tPA patients, and TOP-SAILS, an implementation study of a TIA and minor stroke pathway.

Stroke prevention and improving delivery of care are other foci of his work. He has organized the Johns Hopkins Hospital Comprehensive Stroke Center, of which he is the medical director, as well as the Stroke Prevention Clinic. He works with Johns Hopkins International as Project Medical Director for the affiliate in Panama. He led the organization of stroke programs in Fundacion Santa Fe de Bogota, with JCI accreditation, and Pacifica Salud in Panama, Rep. de Panama.