Harvard's Kevin Staley honored with AES Research Recognition Award for Basic Science

The American Epilepsy Society (AES) announces that Kevin Staley, M.D., professor of child neurology and mental retardation at Harvard Medical School and chief of pediatric neurology at Massachusetts General Hospital, is being honored with the AES Research Recognition Award for Basic Science at the Society's 69th annual meeting in Philadelphia. Staley and his team's work studying "neuronal plumbing" is having far-reaching impact on how we understand and treat neonatal seizures.

"Kevin Staley's success in moving discoveries from the laboratory to clinical trials will benefit patients with epilepsy for many years to come," says David Prince, M.D., professor of neurology and neuroscience at Stanford University. "Kevin is one of those rare individuals who has had outstanding careers in both clinical neurology and basic neuroscience related to epilepsy."

Staley and his trainees study "neuronal plumbing"-- the factors that influence the way neurons in the brain send chemical messages to other parts of the brain through neurotransmitters. Their focus is on GABA, a neurotransmitter that carries implications for the treatment of epilepsy. Most recently, their lab has discovered possible connections between the functions of GABA receptors and the conditions that may result in early seizures and cytotoxic edema, a type of swelling in the brain.

Staley received his doctoral degree in medicine in 1984 from the University of California. He co-chaired the inaugural Gordon Conference on Mechanisms of Epilepsy, the 2013 NINDS Curing Epilepsy conference, the AES Investigator Workshop Committee, and the AES Research and Training Council. He currently chairs the NINDS Board of Scientific Counselors and was granted an NINDS Javits Award this year. Dr. Staley has authored or co-authored several dozen articles and other publications on neurology and pediatrics.

The $10,000 Research Recognition Awards are given annually to active scientists and clinicians working in all aspects of epilepsy research. The awards are designed to recognize professional excellence reflected in a distinguished history of research of important promise for the improved understanding and treatment of epilepsy.

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