Physician-scientist recognized for work on stroke recovery
From the WashU Newsroom…
Stroke neurologist Jin-Moo Lee, MD, PhD, has been named the Norman J. Stupp Professor of Neurology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He studies how the brain “rewires” itself after injury to find ways to enhance recovery.
Lee was installed as the Stupp Professor by Chancellor Mark S. Wrighton and David H. Perlmutter, MD, executive vice chancellor for medical affairs and dean of the School of Medicine.
After a part of the brain is injured, the brain must rewire itself. How thoroughly a person recovers correlates with how well his or her brain rewires and moves functions from injured to uninjured areas. Lee studies the cellular and molecular processes underpinning rewiring the brain.
Also a professor of radiology, Lee uses imaging techniques to study the effect of stroke on the network of connections between brain areas. Different areas of the brain must cooperate for the brain to function properly, but injury can sever the links between distant areas. Sometimes the areas eventually reconnect. Lee is working on understanding how that occurs to find ways to encourage reconnection.
“Jin-Moo’s research provides fundamental insight into the genetic and molecular mechanisms that mediate stroke recovery,” said David Holtzman, MD, the Andrew B. and Gretchen P. Jones Professor and head of the Department of Neurology. “He is making great progress in translating these discoveries into treatments to help people who have suffered strokes.”
In addition to his research, Lee also has been instrumental in improving care for stroke patients as co-chief of the Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disease Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. He has worked to integrate patient care across the Barnes-Jewish network to allow smooth transitions from inpatient to rehab.