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Kelvin Yamada, MD

Dr. Yamada is certified by the American Board of Pediatrics, the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, with Special Competence in Child Neurology, the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, with Added Qualification in Clinical Neurophysiology, and the American Board of Clinical Neurophysiology. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Sigma Xi, has won the Abbott Laboratories Neurology Resident's Epilepsy research competition and received the Child Neurology Society Young Investigator Award in 1992. He has served on the Scientific Selection Committee of the Child Neurology Society and the NIH/NINDS NSDA study section.

Our lab is interested in studying development, modulation and derangements of synaptic transmission at central nervous system synapses. The human disease processes most relevant to our studies include epilepsy, hypoglycemic brain injury and brain injury following stroke. Our experimental preparations are cultured neurons, acutely prepared live brain slices, and live rodents (transgenic mice, Sprague-Dawley rats), and our methods include single cell, brain slice and in vivo electrophysiology, histology (including immunohistochemistry and confocal imaging), and behavioral studies of live animals. Our previous studies in cell culture examined modulation of AMPA-type glutamate receptor desensitization by thiazides, their effects upon glutamatergic synaptic transmission, and their influence upon excitotoxic neuronal and glial cell death. Our current studies include hypoglycemic brain injury in young rats as a model for hypoglycemia-induced brain dysfunction in Type 1 diabetic children, the neurophysiological functions of fibroblast growth factor 14 (FGF14), and the antiepileptic and anorexigenic effects of ketogenic diets.

Medical Training

Dr. Yamada received his B.A. in Chemistry from Pomona College in 1980, his MD from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, in 1983, received pediatric internship and residency training at Baylor Affiliated Hospitals 1983-1985, and came to Washington University in 1985 to serve as a resident and then a fellow in Neurology and Child Neurology.

Dr. Yamada completed a research fellowship between 1987-1990 studying modulation of glutamate receptors in the laboratory of Steven M. Rothman in the Department of Neurology supported by an NINDS National Research Service Award Training Grant in Developmental Neurobiology. Dr. Yamada was appointed Assistant Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics in 1992. He is currently Associate Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics and a faculty member of the Center for the Study of Nervous System Injury at Washington University School of Medicine, and a member of the Comprehensive Epilepsy Program at St Louis Children's Hosptial.

Selected Publications

Yamada, KA, Rensing, N, Izumi, Y, de Erausquin, GA, Gazit, V, Dorsey, DA, Herrera, DG: Repetitive hypoglycemia in young rats impairs hippocampal long-term potentiation, Pediatric Research, 2004, 55:372-9.

Yamada, KA, Awadalla, S: Chapter 24 Neurologic Disorders, Washington Manual of Medical Therapeutics, 31st edition, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Philadelphia, PA, Green, GP, Harris, IS, Lin, GA, Moylan, KC editors, 2004.

Karkar, KM, Thio, LL, Yamada, KA: Effects of Seven Clinically Important Antiepileptic Drugs on Inhibitory Glycine Receptor Currents in Hippocampal Neurons, Epilepsy Research, 2004, 58: 27-35.

Thio, LL, Yamada, KA: Differential presynaptic modulation of excitatory and inhibitory autaptic currents in cultured hippocampal neurons, Brain Research, 2004, 1012: 22-28.

Izumi, Y, Yamada, KA, Matsukawa, M, Zorumski, CF: Effects of insulin on long-term potentiation in hippocampal slices from diabetic rats, Diabetologia, 2003, 46: 1007-1012.

Wong, M, Wozniak, DF, Yamada, KA: An animal model of generalized non-convulsive status epilepticus: developmental characteristics and long-term effects, Experimental Neurology, 2003, 183: 87-99.

Thio, LL, Shanmugam, A, Isenberg, K, Yamada, KA: Benzodiazepines inhibit alpha2-containing glycine receptors in cultured rat hippocampal neurons, Journal of Neurophysiology, Journal of Neurophysiology, 2003, 90: 89-99.

Uhlmann, EJ, Jansen, LA, Li, W, Crino, PB, Mennerick, SJ, Yamada, KA, Gutmann DH: Impaired glial glutamate transport in a mouse tuberous sclerosis epilepsy model, Annals of Neurology, 2003, 54: 251-256.

Wang, Q, Bardgett, ME, Wong, M, Wozniak, DF, Nardi, A, Reid, DC, Yamada, KA, Ornitz, DM: Ataxia and paroxysmal dyskinesia in mice lacking axonally transported FGF14, Neuron, 2002, 35: 25-38.