Movement Disorders

UCSF Movement Disorders Fellowship

The UCSF fellowship in movement disorders is a fully funded two-year program, which immerses our fellows in a comprehensive and extraordinarily diverse clinical experience at UCSF, in partnership with the San Francisco VA Parkinson’s Disease and Research Education and Clinical Center (PADRECC).

A collegial and supportive spirit of collaboration has been present in our center and in our fellowship from the outset. For well over a decade our fellows have greatly benefited from our seamless integration with functional neurosurgery.

In recent years, the fellowship experience has been enhanced by greater integration with the UCSF Memory and Aging Center (MAC), a world-renowned of behavioral neurology center conducting cutting-edge dementia and neurodegenerative disease care and research. Since 2014, when Dr. Caroline Tanner, MD, PhD joined the faculty at UCSF, fellows have had even greater training in the design and conduct of clinical trials, observational clinical research, and epidemiology. Our fellowship is unique in that it provides a highly integrated multidisciplinary experience where fellows are co-mentored by dedicated movement disorders neurologists, neurosurgeons, neuropsychologists, and psychiatrists who specialize in advanced treatments for Parkinson’s disease, including deep brain stimulation (DBS). We continue to build upon this foundation to create an innovative and unique movement disorders fellowship that integrates our strengths in clinical research, epidemiology, basal ganglia physiology, cognitive and behavioral neurology.

The Michael J. Fox Foundation recently recognized our excellence and innovation in fellowship training when it chose UCSF as one of the sites for the Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movements Disorders for 2017-2019.

Fellowship Director

Nicholas B. Galifianakis, M.D., M.P.H.
Assistant Professor of Neurology
415-514-6966

Nicholas.Galifianakis@ucsf.edu

How to Apply

Our fellowship program participates in the national SFMATCH application service for movement disorders fellowships. New application cycles typically begin in April, applications are due by the end of May, and interviews are conducted for select candidates in June/July, a full year (12-15 months) before the start date of the fellowship.

Therefore, interested applicants should apply through sfmatch.org during their PGY3 year of neurology residency, (providing a CV, personal statement and 3 letters of recommendation). Applicants are also welcome to contact the Dr. Galifianakis (Nicholas.Galifianakis@ucsf.edu) with any questions.
 

The University of California is an AA/EEO employer. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply, including minorities and women.

Research

The UCSF Movement Disorders and Neuromodulation Center has over 40 active clinical research projects. Fellows receive research mentorship from internationally recognized leaders in the field. In addition to our historically strong neurophysiology research and clinical trials involving DBS (with Dr. Philip Starr’s lab), fellows can now participate in PD biomarker research, epidemiological and field research, cognitive-behavioral research, as well as patient-centered outcomes research in palliative care and telemedicine. Fellows are exposed to the use cutting edge science and technology, including closed-loop stimulation paradigms, chronic recording devices that utilize electro-corticography, novel devices to diminish tremor, and objective motor assessment technology. Fellows have access to data from our clinical research database, and ample protected time in the first and especially the second year of the program to initiate and complete their own research. In addition, UCSF is a Parkinson Study Group (PSG) site and is participating in the MJFF-sponsored PPMI study. The Department of Neurology at UCSF has made an extensive commitment to translational research and is fully committed to providing an outstanding scientific environment for research. It provides individualized support from the central administrative core of the department.

Clinical Care

Our fellows are immersed in a comprehensive and extraordinarily diverse clinical experience. Multidisciplinary collaboration with neurosurgery, behavioral neurology, psychiatry, neuropsychology and nursing is central. The fellows are deeply involved for the entire course of disease management, from early detection of PD through palliative/supportive care. Working in one of most experienced DBS centers in the world, our fellows gain expertise in all aspects of DBS management, from pre-operative candidacy evaluation, to intraoperative physiology, to the use of interventional-MRI (iMRI) technique of implanting DBS electrodes (which was developed at our center), to post-operative programming. Telemedicine, including video care into the home, is routinely used. Fellows participate in the forward thinking PD palliative care clinics (one of three in North America) with neurologists, palliative care physicians, social work, nursing, and chaplain care. Our fellows gain experience in our dystonia center’s botulinum toxin injection clinic, hands-on from the first month, utilizing EMG and ultrasound guidance. They develop additional independence by managing their own patients longitudinally for two years in supervised weekly continuity clinics, at the PADRECC. Fellows benefit from a weekly movement disorders journal club, video rounds, and neurophysiology conferences where they also rotate as presenters, as well as monthly teleconferences and optional fellowship exchanges with other prominent movement disorder centers. Our training program allows for fellows to attend the Aspen Movement Disorders Course and the International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society Annual Meeting.

Mentorship

The goal of the UCSF Movement Disorders Fellowship is to train the next generation of leading academic clinicians that will advance the understanding and treatment of PD and other movement disorders. Mentoring strong, future junior faculty members provides some of the greatest joy to the faculty and is of the highest priority at our center. Early in the fellowship, each fellow identifies at least one primary faculty mentor to help direct and advise the design and conduct of an individual research project, submission of publications, and presentation at scientific meetings. We have also instituted a formalized evaluation program, where fellows are evaluated every 6 months and are given constructive feedback to ensure continued development and growth. We work with second-year fellows closely to develop where and how they will start their career. Perhaps the strongest evidence of our center’s training excellence, support, and commitment is the success of our former fellows (see below). Many of our graduates are now movement disorders faculty at academic institutions including UCSF, Johns Hopkins, Stanford, Emory, Case Western Reserve, and the University of Florida.

Former Fellows: Where are they now?

Grad

Year

Name

Current Position

2016

Svjetlana Miocinovic, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Neurology

Emory University

Atlanta, GA

2016

Jennifer Chen, MD

Clinical Fellow in Sleep Disorders

Stanford School of Medicine

Stanford, CA

2016

Erica Byrd, MD

Movement Disorders Specialist

Sutter Neuroscience Institute

Roseville, CA

2015

Melanie Lising, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurology

Stanford School of Medicine

Stanford, CA

2015

Robert R. Coleman, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurology

Michigan State University, Spectrum Health

Grand Rapids, MI

2014

Kelly Mills, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurology

Associate Director, DBS Center

Johns Hopkins Hospital

Baltimore, MD

2013

Maya Katz, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurology

University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)

San Francisco, CA

2012

Camilla Kilbane, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurology

Case Western Reserve University

Cleveland, OH

2011

Jennifer Landes Witt, MD

Movement Disorders Specialist

Swedish Neuroscience Institute

Seattle, WA

2010

Adolfo Ramirez-Zamora, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurology

University of Florida

Gainesville, FL

2010

Rima Ash, MD

Movement Disorders Specialist,

Kaiser Permanente

San Francisco, CA

2009

Nicholas B. Galifianakis, MD, MPH

Assistant Professor of Neurology

Director, Movement Disorders Fellowship

University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)

San Francisco, CA

2009

Lauren Schrock, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurology

Medical Director, DBS Program
University of Utah Health Care

Salt Lake City, UT

2006

Suketu Khandhar, MD

Director, Surgical treatments of PD

Kaiser Permanente

Sacramento, CA

2003

Anthony Mosley, MD

Founder, Movement Disorders Specialist

NW Valley Neurology & Parkinson's Care Associates Phoenix, AZ

Current Fellows

Grad

Year

Name

Neurology Residency

2017

Cameron Dietiker, MD

University of California, San Francisco

2017

Nijee Luthra MD, PhD

University of California, Davis

2018

Mitra Afshari, MD

Northwestern University

2018

Ethan Brown, MD

University of California, San Francisco

2018

Kyle Mitchell, MD

Washington University

2019

TBD

Safra Foundation-funded fellowship

2019

TBD

PADRECC-funded fellowship

2019

TBD

PADRECC-funded fellowship