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Alan I. Faden, MD

David S. Brown Professor in Trauma and Director of the Shock, Trauma & Anesthesiology Research (Star) Center

Academic Title:


Primary Appointment:


Secondary Appointment(s):

Anatomy Neurobiology, Neurology, Psychiatry, Neurosurgery

Administrative Title:

Associate Dean, Trans-Campus Research Advancement


HSF-II, S247

Phone (Primary):

(410) 706-4205


(410) 706-7639

Education and Training

  • University of Pennsylvania, Physics, BA, 1966
  • Indiana University, History & Philosophy of Science, Graduate Studies, 1967
  • University of Chicago School of Medicine, MD, 1971
  • Resident, University of California-San Francisco, Neurology, 1974 (Chief Resident, 1975)


Dr. Faden is a neurologist who is an internationally recognized  leader in neurotrauma. As director of the Center for Shock, Trauma and Anesthesiology Research (STAR), Dr. Faden oversees multidisciplinary research focusing on brain injuries, critical care, and organ support, resuscitation, surgical outcomes, patient safety and injury prevention. He also serves as the Scientific Co-Director for the newly established bi-campus Center for Sports Medicine Health and Human Performance, as well as Associate Dean for Trans-Campus Research Advancement.

His present research focuses on the pathobiology and treatment of traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries, mechanisms of cell death, neuroinflammation, central pain and drug discovery.

Research/Clinical Keywords

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Neuroinflammation, Central Nervous System Injury, Neuroprotection, Cell Death and Recovery, Spinal Cord Injury, Chronic Pain

Highlighted Publications

  1. Kumar A, Barrett JP, Alvarez-Croda DM, Stoica BA, Faden AI, Loane DJ. NOX2 Drives M1-Like Microglial/Macrophage Activation and Neurodegeneration Following Experimental Traumatic Brain Injury. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity.2016 Jul 28. pii: S0889-1591(16)30352-X. doi: 10.1016/j.bbi.2016.07.158. PMID:27477920

  2.  Wu J, Zhao Z, Kumar A, Lipinski MM, Loane DJ, Stoica BA, Faden AI. ER Stress and Disrupted Neurogenesis in the Brain Are Associated with Cognitive Impairment and Depressive-Like Behavior After Spinal Cord Injury. J Neurotrauma. 2016 May 16. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID:27050417 

  3. Wu J, Zhao Z, Zhu X, Renn CL, Dorsey SG, Faden AI. Cell Cycle Inhibition Limit Development And Maintenance Of Neuropathic Pain Following Spinal Cord Injury. Pain. 2016 Feb;157(2):488-503. doi: 10.1097/j.pain.0000000000000393.PMID: 26797506

  4. Ma EL, Smith AD, Desai N, Cheung L, Hanscom M, Stoica BA, Loane DJ, Shea-Donohue T, Faden AI. Bidirectional Brain-Gut Interactions and Chronic Pathological Changes After Traumatic Brain Injury in Mice. Brain Behav Immun. 2017 Jul 1. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 28676351 

  5. Matyas JJ, O'Driscoll CM, Yu L, Coll-Miro M, Daugherty S, Renn CL, Faden AI, Dorsey SG, Wu J.Truncated TrkB.T1-mediated astrocyte dysfunction contributes to impaired motor function and neuropathic pain after spinal cord injury. J Neurosci. 2017 Apr 5;37(14):3956-3971. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3353-16.2017. Epub 2017 Mar 7. PMID: 28270575 

  6. Barrett JP, Henry RJ, Villapol S, Stoica BA,Kumar A, Burns MP, Faden AI, Loane DJ. NOX2 deficiency alters macrophage phenotype through an IL-10/STAT3 dependent mechanism: implications for traumatic brain injury. J Neuroinflammation. 2017 Mar 24;14(1):65. doi: 10.1186/s12974-017-0843-4. PMID: 28340575 

  7. Kumar A, Stoica BA, Loane DJ, Yang M, Abulwerdi G, Khan N, Kumar A, Thom SR, Faden AI. Microglial-derived microparticles mediate neuroinflammation after traumatic brain injury. J Neuroinflammation. 2017 Mar 15;14(1):47. doi: 10.1186/s12974-017-0819-4. PMID: 28292310 

  8. Skovira JW, Wu J, Matyas JJ, Kumar A, Hanscom M, Kabadi, SV, Fanf R, Faden AI. Cell cycle inhibition reduces inflammatory responses, neuronal loss, and cognitive deficits induced by hypobaria exposure following traumatic brain injury. J Neuroinflammation. 2016 Dec 1;13(1):299. PMID: 27903275

Additional Publication Citations

Faden, A.I., Demediuk P., Panter S.S., and Vink R., The role of excitatory amino acids and NMDA receptors in traumatic brain injury. Science 244 (4906): 798-800, 1989.

Yakovlev, A.G., S.M. Knoblach, L. Fan, G.B. Fox, R. Goodnight, and Faden A.I. Activation of CPP32-like caspases contributes to neuronal apoptosis and neurological dysfunction after traumatic brain injury. J Neurosci 17(19): 7415-24, 1997.

Wu J, Zhao Z, Sabirzhanov B, Stoica BA, Kumar A, Luo T, Skovira J, Faden AI Spinal cord injury causes brain inflammation associated with cognitive and affective changes: role of cell cycle pathways. J Neurosci, 34(33):10989-11006, 2014.

Sabirzhanov, B., Zhao, Z., Stoica, B.A., Loane D.J., Wu, J., Borroto, C., Dorsey, S., and Faden A.I., Down-regulation of miR-23a and miR-27a following experimental traumatic brain injury induces neuronal cell death through activation of pro-apoptotic Bcl-2 proteins. Journal of Neuroscience; 34 (30):10055-71, 2014.

Research Interests

Alan I. Faden, M.D. is the David S. Brown Professor in Trauma in the Department of Anesthesiology. Dr. Faden’s laboratory uses multi-disciplinary approaches- including molecular and cellular biology, animal modeling, behavior, imaging and drug discovery- to examine the pathobiology of experimental brain and spinal cord injury and their treatment. Specific research focuses include cell cycle pathways, nueroimflammation, cell death pathways, metabotropic glutamate receptors, and microvesicles, and brain-gut interactions. We use a diverse array of in vitro and in vivo models to address experimental questions: fluid percussion head injury (rats), controlled cortical impact (mice), diffuse brain injury (rats and mice); impact spinal cord injury (rats and mice); transgenic models, in vitro models.

Awards and Affiliations

  • President, National Neurotrauma Society, 1988-89
  • President, San Francisco Neurological Society, 1990-91
  • President, American Society for Experimental NeuroTherapeutics (ASENT), 2006
  • Editor-in-Chief, Neurotherapeutics, 2003-2013
  • David S. Brown Professor, 2009
  • University Professor,  University of Maryland, College Park, 2016

Links of Interest

Previous Positions

  • Dean of Research and Graduate Education, Medical Center, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, 1991-1996
  • Scientific Director, Medical Center, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, 1991-1996
  • Director, Georgetown Institute for Cognitive and Computational Sciences, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, 1995-1998
  • Professor of Neuroscience Neurology and Pharmacology, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, 1991-2009
  • Professor and Vice-Chair, Department of Neurology, University of California, San Francisco, 1984-1991
  • Chief, Neurology Service, Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, San Francisco, CA (1984-90)