Research Activities

Jonathan Bui, MD, PhD

conducts neuroimaging research with an emphasis on the development of new magnetic resonance imaging techniques to facilitate neurological diagnosis and therapeutics. He has an ongoing study to detect neurological injury in neonates and infants with accelerometers.

John R. Crawford, MD

focuses his research on immune mechanisms involved in brain tumor formation, with a goal of developing more effective treatments for childhood brain tumors. He also conducts clinical trials in neuro-oncology in collaboration with St. Jude Children's Hospital, the University of Vermont Consortium, and the Children's Oncology Group.

Jennifer Friedman, MD

has several research interests including neuro-metabolic and genetic disorders that affect movement. She has particular interest in efforts to better understand and treat pediatric neurotransmitter disorders. Current research efforts involve using fMRI to better understand the brain mechanisms that underlie behavioral therapy for tics (CBIT), and the application of genome sequencing to undiagnosed neurologic disease. She also conducts research and training on disability awareness education.

Joseph Gleeson, MD

is focusing his research on understanding the genetic and molecular basis of pediatric brain disorders, with a particular focus on cerebellar and cortical malformations and on genetic causes of epilepsy.

Carla Grosmann, MD

is participating in a study of the clinical and molecular manifestations of neuromuscular and neurogenetic disorders of childhood.

Richard Haas, MD

directs the UCSD Mitochondrial and Metabolic Disease Center. The UCSD Mitochondrial Disease Laboratory is one of only four laboratories in the United States routinely handling fresh tissue for mitochondrial isolation and diagnostics. The laboratory is essential to the clinical activities of the Mitochondrial and Metabolic Disease Center at UCSD and Rady Children's Hospital San Diego. The research focus is on improving diagnostic testing for mitochondrial disease, the role of mitochondrial DNA in disease and the mitochondrial role in neurodegenerative disease. Another active research project is the study of the pharmacokinetics of intravenous levetiracetam in neonates.

David Lieberman, MD, PhD

is conducting research on the role of synapse formation and function in animal models of neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism.

Mark Nespeca, MD

participates in clinical investigations relating to childhood epilepsies and conducts research on Angelman's syndrome.

Michelle Sahagian, MD

is a co-investigator for the Muscular Dystrophy Association U.S. Neuromuscular Disease Registry.

Doris Trauner, MD

focuses her research on cognitive development in children, with specific interests in plasticity in the developing nervous system following perinatal stroke, and cognitive impairments associated with genetic/metabolic disorders and autistic spectrum disorders.

Sonya Wang, MD

studies epilepsy manifestations in children. She is also involved in a multicenter study evaluating the efficacy of levetiracetam in neonatal seizures.