The Stanford Movement Disorders Team

The Stanford Movement Disorders Center

Helen Bronte-Stewart, MD, MSE
The John E. Cahill Professor,
Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences
Professor, Neurology and Neurological Sciences
Director Stanford Movement Disorders Center
Director Stanford Human Motor Control and Balance Laboratory

Dr. Bronte-Stewart received her bachelor's degree in Mathematics and Physics from the University of York in England, her Master's Degree in Bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania, and her MD from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Following her internship in medicine and residency in neurology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Bronte-Stewart completed post-doctoral fellowships in movement disorders and in single unit electrophysiology and motor control with Dr. Stephen Lisberger, at the University of California in San Francisco. She is board certified in psychiatry and neurology. Her expertise in single neuronal electrophysiology in primates has been transferred to the operating room where she performs the intra-operative microelectrode mapping during deep brain stimulations (DBS) procedures.

Dr. Bronte-Stewart's research goal is to understand how the brain controls movement. She developed computerized technology to measure human movement and currently uses this in conjunction with recordings of neuronal and neural network activity in the brain to correlate brain signals with different movements in Parkinson's Disease, tremor and dystonia. She and her team have discovered that people with Parkinson's Disease may have signature "brain arrhythmias" in the subthalamic nucleus in the brain. These rhythms are reduced by DBS at intensities that improve movement. She and her team are now investigating whether these rhythms are directly associated with abnormal movement and therefore whether that can be used as a biomarker for demand brain pacemakers, similar to demand cardiac pacemakers. They are also investigating whether this abnormal rhythm comes from the cortex and whether this will be another potential site for electrical stimulation to treat movement disorders. Dr. Bronte-Stewart is also very interested in balance and gait disorders and has an active research program in this area.

Dr. Bronte-Stewart has authored or co-authored over 60 articles, abstracts, book chapters and other materials on Parkinson's Disease, deep brain stimulation, and related issues, and has lectured widely on these topics all over North America. Throughout her career she has held many teaching positions, beginning during her undergraduate years with directorships of 2 dance companies. In addition, she has been a principal investigator in several studies of treatments for Parkinson's Disease. Her research has been supported by the generous donations of the Kinetics Foundation, the Vincent Coates Foundation, the Robert and Ruth Halperin Foundation, the John A. Blume Foundation, and the Cahill Family Foundation as well as by the NIH.

Kathleen Poston, MD, MS
Associate Professor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Dr. Poston received her Bachelor's of Science in Bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania, her Master's Degree in Biomedical Engineering and her MD at Vanderbilt University. She completed her Neurology residency training at UCSF, where she was Chief Resident. She also completed a fellowship in clinical Movement Disorders under the mentorship of Dr. Stanley Fahn at Columbia University and post-doctoral training in Functional Neuroimaging with Dr. David Eidelberg at the Feinstein Institute.

Dr. Poston's clinical expertise focuses on Parkinson's disease, Dementia with Lewy Bodies, and atypical Parkinsonian disorders (Multiple System Atrophy, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, Cortical Basal Syndrome), with a special interest in the cognitive and non-motor symptoms in these disorders. She also treats patients with dystonia and blepharospasm with botulinum toxin.

Dr. Poston's research uses functional and structural imaging biomarkers that (1) aid in understanding the underlying pathophysiology associated with the motor, cognitive, and behavioral symptoms characteristic of Parkinson’s disease and (2) aid in diagnosis and objectivity track disease progression in clinical trials.  She has also been the Principal Investigator for interventional clinical trials in movement disorders, such as Gene Therapy in Parkinson's disease.

Brent Bluett, DO
Clinical Assistant Professor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Dr. Brent Bluett received his bachelor’s degree in psychology at the University of California at Santa Barbara.  He graduated medical school at Touro University with national osteopathic medicine honors as a member of Sigma Signa Phi.  He completed neurology residency at the University of Texas Southwestern at Austin, during which he was resident chair of the Texas Neurological Society. Afterwards, he went on to obtain a fellowship in Movement Disorders at the University of California San Diego directed by Dr. Irene Litvan, a world renowned expert in atypical parkinsonism. Prior to joining the Stanford movement disorders program, Dr. Bluett worked at the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health.

Dr. Bluett’s clinical expertise is in all movement disorders including Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor, Huntington’s disease, dystonia, normal pressure hydrocephalus, ataxia, and atypical parkinsonism (progressive supranuclear Palsy, dementia with lewy bodies, corticobasal degeneration, and multiple system atrophy). He is trained and skilled in the administration of botulinum toxin injections and deep brain stimulation programming.

Dr. Bluett is a member of the Parkinson Study Group, Huntington Study Group, National Ataxia Foundation, Dystonia Medical Research Foundation, and he recently helped create and develop the CurePSP Centers of Care – a national initiative dedicated to increasing access to care and advancing research initiatives for progressive supranuclear palsy and corticobasal degeneration.

Dr. Bluett’s research focuses on falls prevention in movement disorders. He received NIH grant funding to explore freezing of gait in Parkinson’s disease, in order to better understand the underlying pathophysiology. He is expanding this research at Stanford University by using virtual reality to explore treatments for this disabling phenomenon. 

Alex Eischeid, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor, Neurology and Neurological Sciences

Dr. Eischeid grew up in a small farming town in Western Iowa. He received his bachelor's degree in psychology and biology at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, and attended medical school at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. He completed neurology residency at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics where he was appointed Chief Resident during his fourth year of residency. He completed his Movement Disorders Fellowship at Stanford University.  

Dr. Eischeid is board-certified in Neurology and specializes in the management of Movement Disorders including Parkinson’s disease, atypical parkinsonism, Huntington’s disease, ataxia, dystonia, and tremor. He is trained in botulinum toxin injections, for dystonia and spasticity, and in deep brain stimulation programming.

Shannon M. Kilgore, MD, FAAN
Clinical Associate Professor, Neurology and Neurological Sciences

Dr. Kilgore received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin and her Doctor of Medicine from the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston.  She completed her residency in Neurology at Stanford, serving as Administrative Chief Resident in her last year.  She stayed at Stanford for fellowships in both Movement Disorders, under the direction of Dr. Helen Bronte-Stewart, and also Cerebrovascular disease.

Dr. Kilgore is board-certified in Neurology and specializes in the management of both Movement Disorders and Stroke care at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System.  At the VA, she serves as the Director of Stroke Services and also as the Palo Alto representative of the National VA Parkinson’s Disease Consortium.  As a teacher, she focuses on demonstrating physician to patient/caregiver education and adaptive medical management of the whole patient.

Additionally, Dr. Kilgore cares greatly about pharmaceutical pricing and medication safety and serves as the neurologist on the Medical Advisory Panel to Pharmacy Benefits Management, which determines the formulary for the entire Department of Veterans Affairs.  She also enjoys a long-held interest in education policy.  As the former chair of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education’s Neurology Review Committee, she has participated in determining requirements and assessment models for graduate training programs to use. She also seeks to create quality continuing medical education for practicing neurologists, as a member of the editorial board of the journal Continuum: Lifelong Learning in Neurology and the chair of the American Academy of Neurology’s Program Accreditation Work Group.  Additionally, Dr. Kilgore writes questions for the Neurology initial certification exam for the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. 

J. William Langston, MD
Associate Director, Stanford Udall Center

Dr. J. William Langston originally gained national and international recognition when he discovered the cause of parkinsonism in a group of young heroin addicts in Northern California. The chemical causing their parkinsonism was a contaminate known as MPTP. This discovery has had a major impact on research that continues to this day. Dr. Langston has published nearly 400 scientific papers on PD, and has received numerous national awards for his work, including the Pritzker Prize for Leadership in Parkinson’s Research awarded by the Michael J Fox Foundation, and most recently the Van Andel Award for Outstanding Achievements in Parkinson’s disease Research. He is currently the Associate director of Stanford Udall Center, Department of Pathology, Stanford University Medical School where brings his experience and in depth understanding of PD to virtually all aspects of the program, with a focus on how the rapidly changing concepts of the disease are affecting virtually all areas of research, from the clinic to laboratory.

William J. Marks, Jr., MD, MS-HCM
Adjunct Clinical Professor,
Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Dr. Marks received an Honors Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Marquette University and his Medical Degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He completed his neurology residency and fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Dr. Marks also holds a Master of Science in Health Care Management degree from the Harvard School of Public Health.

Dr. Marks is Board Certified in Neurology and Clinical Neurophysiology.  Prior to joining the Stanford Faculty, he served as Professor of Neurology at UCSF. His clinical and research interests include movement disorders, epilepsy, neuromodulation, health technology, and health care policy.

Dr. Marks also serves as Head of Clinical Neurology at Verily Life Sciences, formerly Google Life Sciences—a translational research and engineering organization focused on improving healthcare by applying scientific and technological advances to significant problems in health and biology. At Verily, Dr. Marks is responsible for developing and implementing strategies and initiatives that will advance the understanding of neurological disorders to ultimately improve patient outcomes.  

Rebecca Miller-Kuhlmann, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Rebecca Miller-Kuhlmann, MD, is a board certified Neurologist and a Clinical Instructor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences. Her clinical interest focus on the diagnosis and treatment of neurologic conditions. She loves clinical medicine and works actively to maintain a wide-breadth of knowledge in order to best treat complex patients with multiple neurologic conditions. She was recognized with the Christine Wijman Humanism in Medicine award in 2017.

As a former public school teacher prior to her medical career, she currently holds an honors certificate in medical education from Stanford and is passionate about medical education. She served as an education chief resident during her training and has been recognized with an Neurology Clerkship Teaching Award and the Fisher's & Dunn Teaching Award for excellence in teaching neurology to Stanford medical students. She deeply enjoys working with medical students and residents both in the classroom and in the clinic.  

Her additional academic interests include mitigation of the epidemic of physician burnout, for which she is a graduate of the American Academy of Neurology's Live Well Lead Well Leadership program and has co-developed and directs a wellness & mentorship program for neurology residents and fellows. She has also completed the Stanford CELT (clinical education leadership training) program for developing skills in quality improvement and enjoys teaching and fostering quality improvement work within the Stanford Neurology Residency.

Leila Montaser Kouhsari, MD, PhD
Clinical Assistant Professor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Dr. Montaser Kouhsari is a board-certified, fellowship-trained movement disorders neurologist and clinical assistant professor at Stanford University.

Her clinical interests include treating cognitive, motor, and non-motor impairments due to Parkinson's disease, atypical Parkinsonism (Multiple System Atrophy, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, Cortical Basal Syndrome), tremor, and ataxia. Dr. Montaser Kouhsari also assesses and manages Deep Brain Stimulations (DBS) treatment for Parkinson's disease and tremor. Her research interests include underlying mechanisms through which Parkinson's disease affects memory, executive function, and decision-making. She is also investigating the role of cognition as a biomarker for early diagnosis of movement disorders.

Before joining Stanford University, Dr. Montaser Kouhsari was a fellow in the movement disorders center at Columbia University and Zuckerman Institute. She completed her post-doctoral training in neuroimaging of cognitive processes such as decision-making at California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and her neurology residency at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City. She earned her M.D. from Iran University of Medical Sciences (IUMS) and her Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from New York University (NYU).

Dr. Montaser Kouhsari's work has appeared in the Journal of Neuroscience, Nature Neuroscience, Neuropsychologia, Journal of Vision and Vision Research. She has been featured in Neurology Today news. She has presented at meetings held by the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), the American Neurological Association (ANA), Society for Neuroscience (SFN), and the Movement Disorders Society (MDS).

Dr. Montaser Kouhsari has received the woman in neuroscience award to attend the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), the Friends of Katzell research fellowship, and the Seaver Foundation Graduate Student award. She was honored to receive the National Institute of Health R25 training research grant before joining Stanford University.

Dr. Montaser Kouhsari is a member of the American Academy of Neurology and Movement Disorders Society. Her community service focuses on increasing awareness of Parkinson's disease and outreach programs to teach neuroscience to high school students.

Hokuto Morita, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Dr. Hokuto Morita received a bachelor’s degree in Molecular and Cell Biology with a Neurobiology emphasis at the University of California at Berkeley, subsequently attaining a Master’s degree in Neuroscience at Johns Hopkins, where he did research on cell models of Huntington’s disease and other triplet repeat disorders. Following this, he finished both medical school and internship at Penn State Hershey. He completed his neurology residency at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. He then went on to complete a 2 year movement disorders fellowship with a special emphasis in both DBS and hereditary ataxias and choreas at the University of Florida under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Okun. During his fellowship he performed approximately 100 intraoperative microelectrode recordings for DBS surgery.

His initial interest in movement disorders stemmed from his own experiences with a movement disorder, but thereafter fell in love with the underlying science. He was very impressed with Dr. Rodolfo Llinas‘s assertion that movement was a key driving force in the evolution of nervous systems. His interest in movement is not just restricted to abnormal movement, but also appreciates the beauty of movement in all of its forms and enjoys watching athletes, dancers, and animals in movement. He regularly attends dance performances and is excited about the possibilities of dance and other expressive movements for the treatment of movement disorders.

Dr. Morita has clinical expertise in the treatment and diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, atypical parkinsonism, Huntington’s disease, ataxia, tremor, dystonia, myoclonus. He has also written publications related to DBS targeting and management.  Dr. Morita has a special research interest in hereditary movement disorders, particularly familial forms of ataxia and chorea, and hyperkinetic movement disorders.

He enjoys working with nonprofit movement disorder patient organizations and has written several patient education articles.

Veronica E. Santini, MD
Clinical Associate Professor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Dr. Veronica Santini joined the Stanford Neurology faculty in 2014, where she has a busy movement disorders and clinical research practice. Dr. Santini co-directs the Multidisciplinary Huntington Disease and Ataxia Clinic, where she oversees a large and dedicated team of specialists providing holistic, patient-centered care. In 2015, it received the prestigious designation as a Huntington Disease Society of America, Center of Excellenceand has maintained this designation under her leadership. Given her expertise in the evaluation of autonomic dysfunction and in ataxia, she has a particular interest in the management of multiple system atrophy. Dr. Santini is impassioned to provide equitable healthcare, identifying disparities in neurologic care worldwide and launching global multidisciplinary neurologic programs to provide care to low income nations. Her most recent work, in collaboration with the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) and the St. Luke Foundation, delivers neurologic care to impoverished nation of Haiti. Due to this work, she was named a Global Ambassador of the St. Luke Foundation. Dr. Santini was also selected as a 2015 AAN Palatucci Advocate and a 2016 AAN Emerging Leader. She is also active in other leadership roles of the AAN and of the International Parkinson and Movement Disorders Society. 

Dr. Santini is enthusiastic about medical education and has a responsibility in teaching Stanford medical students from their first to their graduating years at Stanford. She is an Educator 4 C.A.R.E., where she directs a learning community of over 30 students throughout their training and previously held leadership roles in the Practice of Medicine and Science of Medicine courses. She resumes her instruction to the clinical medical students as director of the Required Neurology Clerkship and is a mentor for the neurology residents and movement disorders fellows. She is also a member of multiple School of Medicine education committees and has played a prominent role nationally to increase student interest and engagement in the neurosciences. Dr. Santini has won numerous teaching awards, includingthe Neurology Clerkship Educator award, the Lysa Forno Excellence in Teaching award, The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Award for Excellence in Pre-Clinical Teaching, the Award for Excellence in Promotion of Humanism, and the Lawrence H. Mathers Award for Exceptional Commitment to Teaching and Active Involvement in Medical Education.

Kristen K. Steenerson, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor, Neurology & Neurological  Sciences

Kristen Steenerson is a board-certified neurologist with fellowship training in otoneurology. Her specific interests include Vestibular Migraine, Benign Paroxysmal Positional vertigo, Ménière's Disease and Persistent Postural-Perceptual Dizziness. Her goal is to work in tandem with Movement Disorders specialists to help address the unmet need in balance disorders through the comprehensive evaluation and care allowed by the Stanford Balance Center, jointly addressing the junction of inner ear and brain disorders.

Laurice Yang, MD, MHA
Clinical Assistant Professor, Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Dr. Laurice Yang received her bachelor’s degree in Molecular Cell Biology at the University of California in Berkeley.  Subsequently, she earned a master’s degree in Health Administration at the University of Southern California where she received the high honor as a Dean Merit Scholar.  She went on to obtain her medical degree from the University of Vermont and completed her neurology residency at the University of Southern California where she was appointed Neuroscience Chief Resident and spent the year revamping the entire medical student/resident education curriculum.  She completed her clinical training as a movement disorders fellow at the University of California in Los Angeles under Dr. Jeff Bronstein. 

Dr. Laurice Yang is a board certified neurologist, specializing in the diagnosis of movement disorders including Parkinson’s disease, atypical parkinsonian disorders, Essential Tremor, and Huntington’s disease.  Dr. Yang has a particular interest in dystonia and spasticity and has been trained to perform botulinum toxin injection under ultrasound guidance to better ensure accuracy and efficacy with each procedure. 

Dr. Yang is also passionate about medical education and serves as the Co-Director for the Medical Student Year II Advanced Clinical Skills. She also has a background in healthcare administration and is currently the Associate Physician Improvement Leader and the Assistant Clinic Chief for the Department of Neurology.