Ying Wu

Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, United States

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Publications (20)98.05 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: D-serine has been shown to improve positive, negative and cognitive symptoms when used as add-on therapy for the treatment of schizophrenia. However, D-serine has to be administered at high doses in order to observe clinical effects. This is thought to be due to D-serine undergoing oxidation by D-amino acid oxidase (DAAO) before it reaches the brain. Consequently, co-administration of D-serine with a DAAO inhibitor could be a way to lower the D-serine dose required to treat schizophrenia. Early studies in rodents to evaluate this hypothesis showed that concomitant administration of structurally distinct DAAO inhibitors with D-serine enhanced plasma and brain D-serine levels in rodents compared to administration of D-serine alone. In the present work we used three potent DAAO inhibitors and confirmed previous results in mice. In a follow-up effort, we evaluated plasma D-serine levels in monkeys after oral administration of D-serine in the presence or absence of these DAAO inhibitors. Even though the compounds reached steady state plasma concentrations exceeding their Ki values by>60-fold, plasma D-serine levels remained the same as those in the absence of DAAO inhibitors. Similar results were obtained with dogs. In summary, in contrast to rodents, DAAO inhibition in monkeys and dogs did not influence the exposure to exogenously administered D-serine. Results could be due to differences in D-serine metabolism and/or clearance mechanisms and suggest that the role of DAAO in the metabolism of D-serine is different across species. These data provide caution regarding the utility of DAAO inhibition for patients with schizophrenia.Neuropsychopharmacology accepted article preview online, 16 October 2015. doi:10.1038/npp.2015.319.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2015 · Neuropsychopharmacology: official publication of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology
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    ABSTRACT: A series of 2-substituted 6-hydroxy-1,2,4-triazine-3,5(2H,4H)-dione derivatives were synthesized as inhibitors of D-amino acid oxidase (DAAO). Many compounds in this series were found to be potent DAAO inhibitors with IC50 values in the double-digit nanomolar range. The 6-hydroxy-1,2,4-triazine-3,5(2H,4H)-dione pharmacophore appears metabolically resistant to O-glucuronidation unlike other structurally related DAAO inhibitors. Among them, 6-hydroxy-2-(naphthalen-1-ylmethyl)-1,2,4-triazine-3,5(2H,4H)-dione 11h was found to be selective over a number of targets and orally available in mice. Furthermore, oral co-administration of D-serine with 11h enhanced the plasma levels of D-serine in mice compared to the oral administration of D-serine alone, demonstrating its ability to serve as a pharmacoenhancer of D-serine.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2015 · Journal of Medicinal Chemistry

  • No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Cancer Research
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    ABSTRACT: Glutamate carboxypeptidase II (GCP-II) is a brain metallopeptidase that hydrolyzes the abundant neuropeptide N-acetyl-aspartyl-glutamate (NAAG) to NAA and glutamate. Small molecule GCP-II inhibitors increase brain NAAG, which activates mGluR3, decreases glutamate, and provide therapeutic utility in a variety of preclinical models of neurodegenerative diseases wherein excess glutamate is presumed pathogenic. Unfortunately no GCP-II inhibitor has advanced clinically, largely due to their highly polar nature resulting in insufficient oral bioavailability and limited brain penetration. Herein we report a non-invasive route for delivery of GCP-II inhibitors to the brain via intranasal (i.n.) administration. Three structurally distinct classes of GCP-II inhibitors were evaluated including DCMC (urea-based), 2-MPPA (thiol-based) and 2-PMPA (phosphonate-based). While all showed some brain penetration following i.n. administration, 2-PMPA exhibited the highest levels and was chosen for further evaluation. Compared to intraperitoneal (i.p.) administration, equivalent doses of i.n. administered 2-PMPA resulted in similar plasma exposures (AUC0-t, i.n./AUC0-t, i.p. = 1.0) but dramatically enhanced brain exposures in the olfactory bulb (AUC0-t, i.n./AUC0-t, i.p. = 67), cortex (AUC0-t, i.n./AUC0-t, i.p. = 46) and cerebellum (AUC0-t, i.n./AUC0-t, i.p. = 6.3). Following i.n. administration, the brain tissue to plasma ratio based on AUC0-t in the olfactory bulb, cortex, and cerebellum were 1.49, 0.71 and 0.10, respectively, compared to an i.p. brain tissue to plasma ratio of less than 0.02 in all areas. Furthermore, i.n. administration of 2-PMPA resulted in complete inhibition of brain GCP-II enzymatic activity ex-vivo confirming target engagement. Lastly, because the rodent nasal system is not similar to humans, we evaluated i.n. 2-PMPA also in a non-human primate. We report that i.n. 2-PMPA provides selective brain delivery with micromolar concentrations. These studies support intranasal delivery of 2-PMPA to deliver therapeutic concentrations in the brain and may facilitate its clinical development.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2015 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: Propofol is a safe and widely used intravenous anesthetic agent, for which additional clinical uses including treatment of migraine, nausea, pain and anxiety have been proposed (Vasileiou et al. Eur J Pharmacol 605:1-8, 2009). However, propofol suffers from several disadvantages as a therapeutic outside anesthesia including its limited aqueous solubility and negligible oral bioavailability. The purpose of the studies described here was to evaluate, in both animals and human volunteers, whether fospropofol (a water soluble phosphate ester prodrug of propofol) would provide higher propofol bioavailability through non-intravenous routes. Fospropofol was administered via intravenous, oral and intraduodenal routes to rats. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic parameters were then evaluated. Based on the promising animal data we subsequently conducted an oral and intraduodenal pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic study in human volunteers. In rats, bioavailability of propofol from fospropofol delivered orally was found to be appreciable, in the order of around 20-70%, depending on dose. Availability was especially marked following fospropofol administration via the intraduodenal route, where bioavailability approximated 100%. Fospropofol itself was not appreciably bioavailable when administered by any route except for intravenous. Pharmacologic effect following oral fospropofol was confirmed by observation of sedation and alleviation of thermal hyperalgesia in the rat chronic constrictive injury model of neuropathic pain. The human data also showed systemic availability of propofol from fospropofol administration via oral routes, a hereto novel finding. Assessment of sedation in human volunteers was correlated with pharmacokinetic measurements. These data suggest potential utility of oral administration of fospropofol for various therapeutic indications previously considered for propofol.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · Journal of Translational Medicine

  • No preview · Article · Oct 2014 · Cancer Research
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    ABSTRACT: δ-Thiolactones derived from thiol-based glutamate carboxypeptidase II (GCPII) inhibitors were evaluated as prodrugs. In rat liver microsomes, 2-(3-mercaptopropyl)pentanedioic acid (2-MPPA, 1) was gradually produced from 3-(2-oxo-tetrahydro-thiopyran-3-yl)propionic acid (5), a thiolactone derived from 1. Compound 1 was detected in plasma at concentrations well above its IC50 value for GCPII following oral administration of 5 in rats. Consistent with the oral plasma pharmacokinetics, thiolactone 5 exhibited efficacy in a rat model of neuropathic pain following oral administration.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2013 · Journal of Medicinal Chemistry
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    ABSTRACT: 2-Phosphonomethyl pentanedioic acid (2-PMPA) is a potent and selective inhibitor of glutamate carboxypeptidase-II, an enzyme which catabolizes the abundant neuropeptide N-acetyl-aspartyl-glutamate (NAAG) to N-acetylaspartate (NAA) and glutamate. 2-PMPA demonstrates robust efficacy in numerous animal models of neurological disease, however its pharmacokinetics has not yet been fully described. 2-PMPA is a highly polar compound with multiple negative charges causing significant challenges for analysis in biological matrices. Here we report a derivatization method for the acidic groups that involved protein precipitation with acetonitrile followed by reaction with N-tert-butyldimethysilyl-N-methyltrifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA). The silylated analyte with transitions (683→551.4) and the internal standard (669→537.2) were monitored by tandem mass spectrometry with electrospray positive ionization mode. The method was subsequently used to evaluate 2-PMPA pharmacokinetics in rats. Intraperitoneal administration of 100mg/kg 2-PMPA resulted in maximum concentration in plasma of 275μg/mL at 0.25h. The half-life, area under the curve, apparent clearance, and volume of distribution were 0.64h, 210μg×h/mL, 7.93mL/min/kg, and 0.44L/kg, respectively. The tissue/plasma ratios in brain, sciatic nerve and dorsal root ganglion were 0.018, 0.120 and 0.142, respectively. In summary, a sensitive analytical method for 2-PMPA is reported that can be employed for similarly charged molecules.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2013 · Journal of pharmaceutical and biomedical analysis
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    ABSTRACT: Glutamate Carboxypeptidase II (GCP II) is a potential therapeutic target in neurological disorders associated with excessive activation of glutamatergic systems. The potent, orally bioavailable GCP II inhibitor 2-MPPA is effective in preclinical models of diseases where excess glutamate release is implicated, including neuropathic pain and was the first GCPII inhibitor to be administered to man. The relationship between dosing regimen, pharmacokinetics and analgesia in a neuropathic pain model were examined in rats to aid development of clinical dosing. The efficacy of oral 2MPPA in the chronic constrictive injury (CCI) model was not simply related to plasma concentrations. Even though maximal concentrations were observed within one hour of dosing, the analgesic effect took at least 8 days of daily dosing to become significant. The delay was not due to tissue drug accumulation since inhibitory concentrations of the drug were achieved in the nerve within one hour of dosing. There was also no accumulation of drug in plasma or tissue after multiple daily dosing. Effects were dependent on reaching a threshold concentration since dividing daily dose led to a loss of effect. The analgesic effect outlasted plasma exposure and was maintained for days even after daily dosing was halted. The delayed onset, dependence on threshold plasma concentration, and sustained effects after exposured support the hypothesis that an indirect, long-lived mechanism of action. While these longer lasting secondary mechanisms are not yet identified, daily clinical dosing of a rapidly eliminated GCP II inhibitor appears justified.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2013 · Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
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    ABSTRACT: Eribulin mesylate (E7389, INN:eribulin mesilate Halaven(®)) is a non-taxane microtubule dynamics inhibitor currently in clinical use for advanced breast cancer. Other microtubule-targeting agents for breast cancer, including paclitaxel and ixabepilone, display a common treatment dose-limiting toxicity of peripheral neuropathy (PN). In an earlier study, we found eribulin mesylate had a lower propensity to induce PN in mice than either paclitaxel or ixabepilone. In the current study, we compared additional PN induced by paclitaxel versus eribulin mesylate when administered to mice with preexisting paclitaxel-induced PN. Initially, paclitaxel at 0.75 × its maximum tolerated dose (MTD; 22.5 mg/kg) was given on a Q2Dx3 regimen for 2 weeks. The second chemotherapy was 0.5 MTD eribulin mesylate (0.875 mg/kg) or paclitaxel (15 mg/kg) on a similar regimen, starting 2 weeks after the first. Initial paclitaxel treatment produced significant decreases in caudal nerve conduction velocity (NCV; averaging 19.5 ± 1 and 22.2 ± 1.3 %, p < 0.001) and amplitude (averaging 53.2 ± 2.6 and 72.4 ± 2.1 %, p < 0.001) versus vehicle when measured 24 h or 2 weeks after dosing cessation, respectively. Additional 0.5 MTD paclitaxel further reduced caudal NCV and amplitude relative to immediately before initiation of the second regimen (by 11 ± 2.1 and 59.2 ± 5 %, p < 0.01, respectively). In contrast, 0.5 MTD eribulin mesylate caused no further decrease in caudal NCV. In conclusion, unlike additional paclitaxel treatment, eribulin mesylate administered to mice with preexisting paclitaxel-induced PN had limited additional deleterious effects at 6 weeks. These preclinical data suggest that eribulin mesylate may have reduced tendency to exacerbate preexisting paclitaxel-induced PN in clinical settings.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2013 · Neurotoxicity Research
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    ABSTRACT: Peripheral neuropathy from nerve trauma is a significant problem in the human population and often constitutes a dose limiting toxicity in patients receiving chemotherapy. E2072 is a potent (Ki=10 nM), selective and orally available inhibitor of glutamate carboxypeptidase II (GCPII). Here, we report that E2072 attenuates hyperalgesia and nerve conduction velocity (NCV) deficits in preclinical rodent models of neuropathic pain and oxaliplatin-induced neuropathy. In the chronic constrictive injury (CCI) model, orally administered E2072 reversed pre-existing thermal hyperalgesia in rats in a dose-dependent fashion, with a minimally effective dose of 0.1 mg/kg/day. Interestingly, multiple days of dosing of E2072 were required before analgesia was realized even though GCPII inhibitory exposures were achieved on the first day of dosing. In addition, analgesia was found to persist for up to 7 days after cessation of dosing, consistent with E2072's pharmacokinetic profile and sustained exposure. Furthermore, in a chronic oxaliplatin-induced neuropathy model, (6 mg/kg oxaliplatin ip twice weekly for 4 weeks), female BALB/C mice receiving daily oral E2072 at 1.0 and 0.1 mg/kg displayed no deficits in either caudal or digital velocity compared to significant deficits observed in oxaliplatin alone-treated mice (12±3% and 9±2% respectively). Similar findings were seen with oxaliplatin-induced digital and caudal amplitude deficits. Importantly, E2072 showed no interference with the antineoplastic efficacy of oxaliplatin in mice bearing leukemia (L1210), even at doses 100 times its neuroprotective/analgesic dose, indicating a selective effect on neuropathy. These data support the therapeutic utility of GCPII inhibitors in neuropathy and neuropathic pain.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2012 · Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
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    ABSTRACT: d-Amino acid oxidase (DAAO) catalyzes the oxidative deamination of d-amino acids including d-serine, a full agonist at the glycine modulatory site of the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor. To evaluate the significance of DAAO-mediated metabolism in the pharmacokinetics of oral d-serine, plasma d-serine levels were measured in both wild-type mice and transgenic mice lacking DAAO. Although d-serine levels were rapidly diminished in wild-type mice (t(&frac12;) = 1.2 h), sustained drug levels over the course of 4 h (t(&frac12;) > 10 h) were observed in mice lacking DAAO. Coadministration of d-serine with 6-chlorobenzo[d]isoxazol-3-ol (CBIO), a small-molecule DAAO inhibitor, in wild-type mice resulted in the enhancement of plasma d-serine levels, although CBIO seems to have only temporary effects on the plasma d-serine levels due to glucuronidation of the key hydroxyl group. These findings highlight the predominant role of DAAO in the clearance of d-serine from the systemic circulation. Thus, a potent DAAO inhibitor with a longer half-life should be capable of maintaining high plasma d-serine levels over a sustained period of time and might have therapeutic implications for the treatment of schizophrenia.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2012 · Drug metabolism and disposition: the biological fate of chemicals
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    ABSTRACT: A series of thiol-based glutamate carboxypeptidase II (GCPII) inhibitors have been synthesized with either a 3-(mercaptomethyl)benzoic acid or 2-(2-mercaptoethyl)benzoic acid scaffold. Potent inhibitors were identified from each of the two scaffolds with IC(50) values in the single-digit nanomolar range, including 2-(3-carboxybenzyloxy)-5-(mercaptomethyl)benzoic acid 27c and 3-(2-mercaptoethyl)biphenyl-2,3'-dicarboxylic acid 35c. Compound 35c was found to be metabolically stable and selective over a number of targets related to glutamate-mediated neurotransmission. Furthermore, compound 35c was found to be orally available in rats and exhibited efficacy in an animal model of neuropathic pain following oral administration.
    No preview · Article · May 2012 · Journal of Medicinal Chemistry
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    ABSTRACT: D-Serine administration has been shown to be effective for the treatment of schizophrenia symptoms. However, D-Serine must be administered at high doses to observe clinical effects. This is due in large part to D-Serine undergoing oxidation by D-Serine acid oxidase (DAAO) before it reaches the brain. Consequently, coadministration of D-Serine with a DAAO inhibitor has been suggested as a way to lower the dose of D-serine required to treat schizophrenia. During the characterization of DAAO inhibitors as potential drugs, inhibitors are evaluated in rodents for their ability to increase plasma D-Serine levels after oral coadministration. Current high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC)-based methodologies to measure D-Serine in plasma are time-consuming and are not amenable to concomitant analysis of multiple samples. We report the characterization of a 96-well format assay to monitor D-Serine in plasma that greatly expedites analysis time. The assay involves the use of strong cation exchange solid phase extraction (SPE) to isolate D-Serine from plasma followed by quantitation of D-Serine using the DAAO-catalyzed reaction. Plasma D-Serine determination using this assay could also be used as pharmacodynamic marker and as biomarker.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2011 · Analytical Biochemistry
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    ABSTRACT: Chemotherapy-induced neurotoxicity is a significant problem associated with successful treatment of many cancers. Tubulin is a well-established target of antineoplastic therapy; however, tubulin-targeting agents, such as paclitaxel and the newer epothilones, induce significant neurotoxicity. Eribulin mesylate, a novel microtubule-targeting analogue of the marine natural product halichondrin B, has recently shown antineoplastic activity, with relatively low incidence and severity of neuropathy, in metastatic breast cancer patients. The mechanism of chemotherapy-induced neuropathy is not well understood. One of the main underlying reasons is incomplete characterization of pathology of peripheral nerves from treated subjects, either from patients or preclinically from animals. The current study was conducted to directly compare, in mice, the neuropathy-inducing propensity of three drugs: paclitaxel, ixabepilone, and eribulin mesylate. Because these drugs have different potencies and pharmacokinetics, we compared them on the basis of a maximum tolerated dose (MTD). Effects of each drug on caudal and digital nerve conduction velocity, nerve amplitude, and sciatic nerve and dorsal root ganglion morphology at 0.25 × MTD, 0.5 × MTD, 0.75 × MTD, and MTD were compared. Paclitaxel and ixabepilone, at their respective MTDs, produced significant deficits in caudal nerve conduction velocity, caudal amplitude and digital nerve amplitudes, as well as moderate to severe degenerative pathologic changes in dorsal root ganglia and sciatic nerve. In contrast, eribulin mesylate produced no significant deleterious effects on any nerve conduction parameter measured and caused milder, less frequent effects on morphology. Overall, our findings indicate that eribulin mesylate induces less neuropathy in mice than paclitaxel or ixabepilone at equivalent MTD-based doses.
    Preview · Article · Jun 2011 · Cancer Research

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2011 · Cancer Research
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    Full-text · Poster · Feb 2007
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    ABSTRACT: GCP II inhibition decreases extracellular excitotoxic glutamate and increases extracellular NAAG, both of which provide neuroprotection. We have demonstrated with our potent and selective GCP II inhibitors efficacy in models of stroke, ALS and neuropathic pain. GCP II inhibition may have significant potential benefits over existing glutamate-based neuroprotection strategies. The upstream mechanism seems selective for excitotoxic induced glutamate release, as GCP II inhibitors in normal animals induced no change in basal glutamate. This suggestion has recently been corroborated by Lieberman and coworkers24 who found that both NAAG release and increase in GCP II activity appear to be induced by electrical stimulation in crayfish nerve fibers and that subsequent NAAG hydrolysis to glutamate contributes, at least in part, to subsequent NMDA receptor activation. Interestingly, even at relatively high doses of compounds, GCP II inhibition did not appear to be associated with learning/memory deficits in animals. Additionally, quantitative neurophysiological testing data and visual analog scales for 'psychedelic effects' in Phase I single dose and repeat dose studies showed GCP II inhibition to be safe and well tolerated by both healthy volunteers and diabetic patients. GCP II inhibition may represent a novel glutamate regulating strategy devoid of the side effects that have hampered the development of postsynaptic glutamate receptor antagonists.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2006 · Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
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    ABSTRACT: Dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DPP IV) is a ubiquitous membrane-bound enzyme that cleaves the two N-terminal amino acids from peptides with a proline or alanine residue in the second position from the amino end. Potential substrates for DPP IV include several neuropeptides, suggesting a role for DPP IV in neurological processes. We have developed a potent DPP IV inhibitor (IC50 = 30 nM), 1-(2-amino-3-methyl-butyryl)-azetidine-2-carbonitrile (AMAC), which has shown efficacy in two established models of psychosis: mescaline-induced scratching and amphetamine-induced hyperactivity. In the mescaline-induced scratching model, AMAC treatment before mescaline administration reduced the number of scratching paroxysms by 68% (P < 0.01). The compound showed a dose-dependent effect, inhibiting significantly at 6, 20 and 60 mg/kg (37%, 39% and 68%, respectively). In the amphetamine-induced hyperactivity model, 50 and 60 mg/kg AMAC, given before injection of amphetamine, significantly reduced hyper-locomotion by 65% and 76%, respectively. Additionally, AMAC showed no significant activity in binding assays for 20 receptors thought to be involved in the pathology of schizophrenia, including dopamine, serotonin and glutamate. A structurally similar analog, 1-(2-dimethylamino-3-methyl-butyryl)-azetidine-2-carbonitrile (DAMAC), that does not inhibit DPP IV, was inactive in both models. Taken together, these data suggest that the antipsychotic effects of AMAC are the result of DPP IV inhibition.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2005 · Brain Research
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    ABSTRACT: Two representative glutamate carboxypeptidase II (GCP II) inhibitors, 2-(hydroxypentafluorophenylmethyl-phosphinoylmethyl)pentanedioic acid 2 and 2-(3-mercaptopropyl)pentanedioic acid 3, were synthesized in high optical purities (>97%ee). The two enantiomers of 2 were prepared from previously reported chiral intermediates, (R)- and (S)-2-(hydroxyphosphinoylmethyl)pentanedioic acid benzyl esters 8. The synthesis of (R)- and (S)-3 involves the hydrolysis of (R)- and (S)-3-(2-oxo-tetrahydro-thiopyran-3-yl)propionic acids, (R)- and (S)-11, the corresponding optically pure thiolactones delivered by chiral chromatographic separation of the racemic 11. GCP II inhibitory assay revealed that (S)-2 is 40-fold more potent than (R)-2. In contrast, both enantiomers of 3 inhibited GCP II with nearly equal potency. The efficacy observed in subsequent animal studies with these enantiomers correlated well with the inhibitory potency in a GCP II assay.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2005 · Journal of Medicinal Chemistry

Publication Stats

121 Citations
98.05 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2012-2015
    • Johns Hopkins University
      • Department of Neurology
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • 2011-2015
    • Johns Hopkins Medicine
      • • Department of Neurology
      • • Brain Science Institute
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • 2005
    • University of Maryland, Baltimore
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States