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Yoland Smith, PhD

Division Chief, Neuropharmacology and Neurologic Diseases
Emory National Primate Research Center

Phone: 404-727-7519


Lab Web Site:


Yoland Smith, PhD, is Chief of the Division of Neuropharmacology and Neurologic Disease at the Emory National Primate Research Center. In this role, he oversees the administrative functions of the division, including oversight of the administrative staff, approving grant submissions by division faculty and trainees, ensuring appropriate allocation of division resources and mentoring junior faculty. Dr. Smith is involved in reporting division research activities to the National Institutes of Health Office of Research Infrastructure Programs and preparing progress and plan descriptions of division research activities for the Emory Primate Center’s base grant renewal.

Within his research program, Dr. Smith seeks to understand the pathophysiology of Parkinson's Disease (PD) and characterize changes in the synaptic plasticity of the basal ganglia in normal and pathological conditions. To achieve these goals, the Smith lab has developed a collaborative, interdisciplinary research program that uses in vitro and in vivo anatomical, electrophysiological, pharmacological and brain imaging approaches to study the functional organization of the basal ganglia in normal nonhuman primates and in nonhuman primate models of PD. This work is complemented with behavioral studies of novel surgical and pharmacologic therapies for PD in nonhuman primates.

From July 2015 - June 2019, Dr. Smith was selected to serve on the Clinical Neuroplasticity and Neurotransmitters Study Section within the Center for Scientific Review at the National Institutes of Health. Members are selected on the basis of their demonstrated competence and achievement in their scientific discipline as evidenced by the quality of research accomplishments, publications in scientific journals and other significant scientific activities, achievements and honors. Membership on a study section represents a major commitment of professional time and energy as well as a unique opportunity to contribute to the national biomedical research effort. Study sections review grant applications submitted to the NIH, make recommendations on these applications to the appropriate NIH national advisory council or board, and survey the status of research in their fields of science. These functions are of great value to medical and allied research in this country.

Dr. Smith received his doctorate in neurobiology from Laval University, Canada, and completed his doctoral training in the Medical Research Council Unit at the University of Oxford, England.


View publications on PubMed