Medical College of Wisconsin
Press Release

Neuroscience Institute Formed to Further Research and Advancements in Treating Neurological Disorders

Shekar N. Kurpad, MD, PhD, Named Founding Director

By - Jan 11th, 2022 12:30 pm
Shekar N. Kurpad. Photo courtesy of the Medical College of Wisconsin.

Shekar N. Kurpad. Photo courtesy of the Medical College of Wisconsin.

Milwaukee, Jan. 11, 2022 – Shekar N. Kurpad, MD, PhD, the Sanford J. Larson, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair of Neurosurgery at The Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), has been selected as the Founding Director of the newly created joint MCW/Froedtert Health/Children’s Wisconsin Neuroscience Institute, effective Jan. 7, 2022.

In his new role, Dr. Kurpad will be responsible for the overall strategy, growth, and operation of the Neuroscience Institute (NSI) in collaboration with associated clinical departments and programs, the Neuroscience Research Center (NRC) and research enterprises. Dr. Kurpad will have significant local, regional, and national exposure and will lead efforts to bring together hundreds of neuroscience and spine-related faculty and staff into a highly functioning team, capable of achieving the established goal of achieving Top 10 recognition in 7-10 years.

The new NSI is a collaboration among MCW, Froedtert Health, and Children’s Wisconsin to harness the vast clinical expertise and world-renowned research talent in neurosciences across the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center campus, synergize advancements in treating disorders affecting the brain, spine, spinal cord, and peripheral nervous system, and, importantly, further premier programs and discovery. The NSI also will expand and align the neuroscience and spine service lines that exist across the affiliated health systems and will work in partnership with MCW’s NRC to advance their research strategy.

“The new Neuroscience Institute will showcase the unmatched advancements that are possible through collaborative academic medicine,” said Joseph E. Kerschner, MD, provost and executive vice president of MCW and The Julia A. Uihlein, MA, Dean of the School of Medicine. “Dr. Kurpad’s vast experience and expertise across the field of neuroscience are invaluable in propelling the NSI mission forward.”

Dr. Kurpad also serves as co-director of the Center for Neurotrauma Research at MCW, medical director of the Neurosciences Service Line at Froedtert Health, and clinical director of SpineCare. Additionally, Dr. Kurpad will serve as the physician executive for the Froedtert Health Neuroscience and Spine Service Lines and as a senior physician advisor to the Children’s Wisconsin Neuroscience Executive Committee. Understanding that our hospitals have independent governance, he will function in a dyad leadership relationship with the operations’ vice president from each organization.

Concurrently, Dr. Kurpad will continue to serve as chair of neurosurgery until he is succeeded by an interim chair. Additionally, he will continue to serve as the Froedtert Health medical director of the Neurosciences Service Line until a successor is named.

Dr. Kurpad joined the faculty of MCW as assistant professor of neurosurgery in January 2002 and has served as chair of the department since March 2017. Dr. Kurpad’s clinical expertise lies in surgery for spinal trauma, tumors of the spine and spinal cord, degenerative disease of the spine, spinal deformities, skull base tumors and general neurosurgery. He is board-certified with the American Board of Neurological Surgery and has been listed in Best Doctors in America since 2007.

Dr. Kurpad has extensive research experience in spinal cord injury and is internationally recognized in the field of imaging biomarkers for spinal cord injury and cervical myelopathy. As the recipient of the prestigious Van Wagenen Fellowship, Dr. Kurpad conducted cellular transplantation research for spinal cord injury at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm.

He received his medical degree from Bangalore Medical College, Bangalore, India, in 1991, and his PhD with honors from Duke University in 1995.

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