Stephen George Waxman MD, PhD
Bridget Marie Flaherty Professor of Neurology and Professor of Neurobiology and of Pharmacology; Director, Center for Neuroscience and Regeneration Research
Departments & OrganizationsBiological and Biomedical Sciences (BBS): Neuroscience | Molecular Medicine, Pharmacology, and Physiology
Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program
Yale Medical Group
Center for Neuroscience and Regeneration Research
BiographyStephen G. Waxman, MD, PhD:
Steve Waxman exemplifies the bridge between basic research and clinical medicine. He is the Bridget Marie Flaherty Professor of Neurology, Neurobiology, and Pharmacology at Yale University. He served as Chairman of Neurology at Yale from 1986 until 2009. He founded the Neuroscience and Regeneration Research Center at Yale in 1986, and is its Director. Dr. Waxman is also Visiting Professor at University College London and the Institute of Neurology, London.
Dr. Waxman received his BA from Harvard, and his MD and PhD degrees from Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He held faculty appointments at Harvard Medical School, MIT, and Stanford University, prior to moving to Yale. Dr. Waxman has received international recognition for his research, which uses tools from the “genomic revolution” to find new therapies that will promote recovery of function after injury to the brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nerves.
Dr. Waxman’s research has defined the ion channel architecture of myelinated axons, and demonstrated its importance for conduction in normal axons and for conduction failure after demyelination (Science, 1985). He demonstrated increased expression of sodium channels in demyelinated axons (Science, 1982), identified the sodium channel isoforms responsible for this remarkable neuronal plasticity which supports remission in multiple sclerosis (PNAS, 2004), and delineated the roles of sodium channels in axonal degeneration (PNAS, 1993, 2004). He has also made pivotal discoveries that explain pain after nerve injury. Most recently, in a keystone leap from laboratory to humans, Waxman carried out molecule-to-man studies combining molecular genetics, molecular biology, and biophysics to demonstrate the contribution of ion channels to human pain (Trends in Molec. Med. 2005; PNAS, 2006).
Dr. Waxman has published more than 600 scientific papers. He has as edited nine books, and is the author of Spinal Cord Compression and of Clinical Neuroanatomy, which has been translated into eight languages. He has served on the editorial boards of many journals including Brain, Annals of Neurology, Trends in Neurosciences, Nature Clinical Neurology, and Trends in Molecular Medicine, and he serves as Editor of The Journal of Physiology and as Editor-in-Chief of Neuroscience Letters. Dr. Waxman has trained more than one hundred and fifty academic neurologists and neuroscientists who work at institutions around the world.
A member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, Dr. Waxman has served on numerous advisory boards and councils, including the Board of Scientific Counselors of the NINDS. His many awards include the Tuve Award from NIH, the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and the Dystel Prize and Wartenberg Award from the American Academy of Neurology. Dr. Waxman was recently honored at the U.S. Capitol with the Middleton Award, the highest honor of the Veterans Administration, and in Great Britain with The Physiological Society’s Annual Prize, an honor that he shares with Nobel Prize laureates Andrew Huxley, John Eccles, and Alan Hodgkin.