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Ruth Walker

  • ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR Neurology
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Education

  • Manhattan VA Hospital
    Internal Medicine

  • Ph.D., University of Edinburgh

  • The Mount Sinai Medical Center
    Movement Disorders

  • M.D., University of Edinburgh

  • New York University School of Medicine
    Neurology

Biography

    Dr Ruth H. Walker received her medical degree from the University of Edinburgh in 1985 and her PhD on basal ganglia anatomy from the same institution in 1992. She completed her residency in neurology at NYU and her fellowship in movement disorders at Mount Sinai.

    Since 1999 she has been on staff at the James J. Peters Veterans Affairs Medical Center in the Bronx, where she is Director of the Movement Disorders Clinic. She is board-certified in neurology.

    Dr. Walker's clinical and research interests involve the neuroanatomy of the basal ganglia; the structures which are affected by neurological diseases such as Parkinson's disease, dystonia, tics and tremors. In addition to diagnosing and treating patients with these disorders, she specializes in those affected by involuntary movements known as chorea, seen in disorders such as Huntington's disease.
    She has particular expertise in diagnosing and treating the very rare types of chorea known as neuroacanthocytosis, which includes chorea-acanthocytosis and McLeod's syndrome.

    Dr. Walker is recognized as an international authority on these disorders, has authored many articles, and is the lead editor of a recent book on neuroacanthocytosis syndromes.  She is guest editor for the Movement Disorders Society's website for its Aug/Sept 2010 edition, "A 2010 Update on the 'Other' Choreic Disorders" (www.movementdisorders.org).  Dr. Walker edited "The Differential Diagnosis of Chorea," to be published by Oxford University Press in September 2010.

    Dr. Walker lectures internationally on these topics and regularly gives courses on chorea and other hyperkinetic movement disorders at the annual meetings of the American Academy of Neurology and the Movement Disorder Society.
    Dr Walker's other primary interest is the neurochemical interactions of the structures of the brain which comprise the basal ganglia. Her laboratory work currently involves looking at mechanisms of deep brain stimulation in Parkinson's disease.

Research

Research

The role of H2 field of Forel/zona incerta in PD neurosurgical therapy

Red cell membrane abnormalities in chorea-acanthocytosis and other neurological disorders

Publications

Bao L, Patel J, Walker RH, Shashidharan P, Rice ME. Dysregulation of striatal dopamine release in a transgenic mouse model of dystonia. Journal of Neurochemistry (in press) 2010; 114: 1781-1791.

Walker RH, Davies G, Koch RJ, Haack AK, Moore C, Meshul CK. Effects of zona incerta lesions upon striatal neurochemistry and behavioural asymmetry in 60HDA lesioned rats . Journal of Neuroscience Research (in press) 2010; 88(13): 2964-2975.

Walker RH, Koch RJ, Sweeney JE, Moore C, Meshul CK. Effects of subthalamic nucleus lesions and stimulation upon glutamate release in the dopamine-depleted striatum. Neuroreport 2009; 20(8): 770-775.

Walker RH, Koch RJ, Moore C, Meshul CK. Subthalamic nucleus stimulation and lesioning have distinct state-dependent effects upon striatal dopamine metabolism. Synapse 2009; 63: 136-146.

Walker RH, Saiki S, Danek A, editors. Neuroacanthocytosis syndromes II. Springer-Verlag, Berlin Heidelberg;.

Riccioppo Rodrigues GG, Walker RH, Bader B, Danek A, Marques Jr W, Tumas V. Chorea-acanthocytosis: report of two Brazilian cases. Movement Disorders 2008; 23(14): 2090-2093.

Rottnek M, Riggio S, Byne W, Sano M, Margolis RL, Walker RH. Schizophrenia in a patient with spinocerebellar ataxia 2: coincidence or a neurodegenerative cause of psychiatric disease . American Journal of Psychiatry 2008; 165(8): 964-967.

Walker RH, Jung HH, Tison F, Lee S, Danek A. Phenotypic variation among brothers with the McLeod neuroacanthocytosis syndrome . Movement Disorders 2007; 22(2): 244-247.

Walker RH, Dobson-Stone C, Rampoldi L, Sano A, Tison F, Danek A. Neurologic phenotypes associated with acanthocytosis . Neurology 2007; 68: 92-98.

Walker RH, Danek A, Uttner I, Offner R, Reid M, Lee S. McLeod phenotype without the McLeod syndrome. Transfusion 2007; 47(2): 299-305.

Walker RH, Liu Q, Ichiba M, Muroya S, Nakamura M, Sano A, Kennedy CA, Sclar G. Self-mutilation in chorea-acanthocytosis- manifestation of movement disorder or psychopathology?. Movement Disorders 2006; 21(12): 2268-2269.

Walker RH, Danek A, Dobson-Stone C, Guerrini R, Jung HH, Lafontaine AL, Rampoldi L, Tison F, Andermann E. Developments in neuroacanthocytosis: Expanding the spectrum of choreatic syndromes. Movement Disorders 2006; 21(11): 1794-1805.

Walker RH, Warwick R, Cercy SP. Augmentation of artistic productivity in Parkinson's disease . Movement Disorders 2006; 21(2): 285-286.

Prohaska R, Sibon OC, Rudnicki DD, Danek A, Hayflick SJ, Verhaag EM, Vonk JJ, Margolis RL, Walker RH. Brain, blood, and iron: perspectives on the roles of erythrocytes and iron in neurodegeneration. Neurobiology of disease 2012 Jun; 46(3).

Walker RH, Schulz VP, Tikhonova IR, Mahajan MC, Mane S, Arroyo Muniz M, Gallagher PG. Genetic diagnosis of neuroacanthocytosis disorders using exome sequencing. Movement disorders : official journal of the Movement Disorder Society 2012 Apr; 27(4).

Walker RH, Moore C, Davies G, Dirling LB, Koch RJ, Meshul CK. Effects of subthalamic nucleus lesions and stimulation upon corticostriatal afferents in the 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rat. PloS one 2012; 7(3).

Velayos-Baeza A, Holinski-Feder E, Neitzel B, Bader B, Critchley EM, Monaco AP, Danek A, Walker RH. Chorea-acanthocytosis genotype in the original critchley kentucky neuroacanthocytosis kindred. Archives of neurology 2011 Oct; 68(10).

Schneider SA, Walker RH, Bhatia KP. The Huntington's disease-like syndromes: what to consider in patients with a negative Huntington's disease gene test. Nature clinical practice. Neurology 2007 Sep; 3(9).

Industry Relationships

Physicians and scientists on the faculty of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai often interact with pharmaceutical, device and biotechnology companies to improve patient care, develop new therapies and achieve scientific breakthroughs. In order to promote an ethical and transparent environment for conducting research, providing clinical care and teaching, Mount Sinai requires that salaried faculty inform the School of their relationships with such companies.

Dr. Walker did not report having any of the following types of financial relationships with industry during 2013 and/or 2014: consulting, scientific advisory board, industry-sponsored lectures, service on Board of Directors, participation on industry-sponsored committees, equity ownership valued at greater than 5% of a publicly traded company or any value in a privately held company. Please note that this information may differ from information posted on corporate sites due to timing or classification differences.

Mount Sinai's faculty policies relating to faculty collaboration with industry are posted on our website at http://icahn.mssm.edu/about-us/services-and-resources/faculty-resources/handbooks-and-policies/faculty-handbook. Patients may wish to ask their physician about the activities they perform for companies.

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