Neurology and Yerkes National Primate Research Center
Dr Smith got his PhD in Neurobiology from Laval University, Quebec, Canada in 1988. During his doctoral training, he worked under the supervision of Professor Andre Parent on various aspects of the functional anatomy of the basal ganglia in primates. He then spent three years of postdoctoral training in the laboratory of Professor Paul Bolam in the Medical Research Council Unit in Oxford UK (1988-1990), and in the laboratory of Professor Mahlon DeLong in Johns Hopkins University (1990-1991), before getting a faculty position of Assistant Professor in the Department of Anatomy of Laval University (Quebec, Canada) which he held for five years (1991-1996) developing a research program that focused primarily on the synaptic organization of the primate basal ganglia. In 1996, he moved to Emory University where he currently holds a position of Professor of Neurology at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center. Since he moved to Emory, he expanded significantly his research program which now relies on a multidisciplinary approach that combines neuroanatomy, electrophysiology and behavioral pharmacology techniques to study the pathophysiology and develop new therapeutics for Parkinson`s disease, using nonhuman primates as an animal model of parkinsonism. His studies cut across behavioral pharmacology and brain imaging techniques to assess the antiparkinsonian and neuroprotective efficacy of novel non-dopaminergic therapy in animal models of Parkinson’s disease. His research is supported by grants from the National Institute of Health, the National Parkinson Foundation, the Tourette Syndrome Association, the Michael J Fox Foundation and the RJG Foundation. He is a member of the Emory University’s UDALL Center of Excellence for Parkinson’s disease. He has published over 200 peer-reviewed manuscripts and book chapters. He has been section editor for the International IBRO journal “Neuroscience”, and he sits on many reviewing committees and editorial boards at national and international levels. He received numerous awards, and was Director of the PhD Graduate Neuroscience Program of Emory University for the past seven years.