Yoland Smith, PhD

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

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Yoland Smith, PhD, 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.

Dr. Smith received his PhD in Neuroscience from Laval University in Quebec, Canada, in 1988. After postdoctoral trainings at Oxford and Johns Hopkins University, he became Assistant professor in the Department of Anatomy at Laval University (1991-1996). In 1996, he joined the Emory University School of Medicine where he is currently Professor and Vice-Chair of Faculty Affairs in Neurology. He is also Chief of the Division of Neuropharmacology and Neurological Disorders at the Emory National Primate Research Center.

In addition, Dr. Smith is a member of the Emory Udall Center of Excellence for Parkinson’s Disease, a project leader for the Aligning Science Across Parkinson’s (ASAP) program and deeply involved in graduate education as teacher, mentor and principal investigator of the NIH T32 Training grant that supports the Emory Graduate Neuroscience Program. He has published more than 250 peer-reviewed manuscripts on the pathophysiology of brain networks in Parkinson’s disease and related movement disorders, and is the Senior Editor of the European Journal of Neuroscience. The National Institutes of Health and various private foundations have supported his research the past 25 years. 

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Research Collaborators

Thomas Wichmann, MD

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Udall Center for PD Research

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