Multiple Sclerosis Fellowship
The University of Maryland Center for Multiple Sclerosis and the Division of Multiple Sclerosis and Neuroimmunology collaborate with the VA Multiple Sclerosis Center of Excellence – East to provide clinical and research training for neurologists looking to specialize in the management of patients with multiple sclerosis and other associated neuroimmunologic conditions, such as neuromyelitis optica, MOG-antibody disease, sarcoidosis, and autoimmune encephalitis. The goal of the fellowship is to train future leaders in the field, with a strong focus on the development of fellows for academic positions in both clinical care and research.
Description of Program
The fellowship is administered by the VA Multiple Sclerosis Center of Excellence – East, at the Baltimore VA Medical Center through the VA Advanced Fellowship Program. The MSCoE – East is the premier center for multiple sclerosis care in the eastern half of the United States in the VA system. Fellows receive joint appointments at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and the University of Maryland Medical Center, where academic affiliate training occurs.
Participants in the program are expected to undergo 2 years of training, with an option for a 3rd year available. Fellows will begin on July 1 of each year, but other starting dates may be arranged. Stipend depends on the level of previous training and will be competitive with national standards.
The program enables trainees to become independent investigators in the conduct of basic and clinical research in the broad field of MS and neuroimmunology. The fellowship consists of four interrelated components:
- Clinical care: Clinical training occurs through mentor-supervised clinical encounters at the University of Maryland Medical Center and the Baltimore VA Medical Center. This includes both ambulatory and inpatient visits. Over the course of the fellowship, the fellow will be trained in the comprehensive evaluation and management of patients with multiple sclerosis and other neuroimmunologic syndromes (i.e. neuromyelitis optica, neurosarcoidosis, autoimmune encephalitis). This includes experience in the management of relapses, progressive disease, MS-related symptoms, and in identifying the appropriate choice of therapy for each disease stage.
- Research: All fellows must conduct a research project in parallel with ongoing clinical responsibilities with the goal of at least one presentation of their findings at a national meeting and at least one peer reviewed journal article by the end of the fellowship. The fellowship schedule should provide the opportunity to spend more than ½ of the fellow’s time dedicated to this research project. The research project may be a novel project created by the fellow in consultation with the Program Director and a research mentor or may be part of the larger research program of a member of the MS Center’s research faculty.
- Design and Conduct of Clinical Trials: The University of Maryland Center for MS is a premier site for the conduct of clinical trials. The fellow is expected to participate actively in clinical trials as an examining physician and gains experience in the use and interpretation of clinical outcome measures such as the EDSS score and the multiple sclerosis functional composite score (MSFC).
- Education: The fellowship provides opportunities for further education in neuroimmunology, multiple sclerosis, and research methods. This includes didactic courses in multiple sclerosis care, clinical research methods, and grant-writing. The fellow also performs journal club-style reviews of the literature and other guided readings under the guidance of the Program Director and is provided opportunities to attend educational and scientific conferences.
- Daniel Harrison, MD
Associate Professor of Neurology and Program Director for the Neuroimmunology/MS Fellowship
Clinical focus: Multiple sclerosis, optic neuritis, neuromyelitis optica, neurosarcoidosis
Research interests: Utilization of novel neuroimaging techniques in MS
- Sarah E. Fredrich, MD
Assistant Professor of Neurology
Clinical focus: Multiple sclerosis, autoimmune neurology and paraneoplastic disorders, neuromyelitis optica, MOGAD
Research interests: Neurologic education
- David R. Benavides, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor of Neurology
Clinical focus: Autoimmune encephalitis, neuromyelitis optica, MOGAD, multiple sclerosis
Research interests: Immunology and treatment of autoimmune encephalitis
- Mitchell Wallin, MD, MPH
Adjunct Associate Professor of Neurology
Clinical focus: Multiple sclerosis, neuroinfections
Research interests: Epidemiology of MS
Eligibility and Application
The program is designed as a post-doctoral clinical and research fellowship. Individuals with MD or MD/PhD are eligible. Candidates must have completed a neurology residency prior to initiation of the fellowship and must be board certified or board eligible in neurology prior to initiation of the fellowship. Candidates must be US Citizens or Permanent Residents to obtain employment through the VA system. Applications to the fellowship are to be submitted through the SF Match System. Please include the following in your applications:
- Curriculum Vitae
- Three letters of recommendation
- Statement of specific interests and career plans
For additional questions, please contact:
Dr. Daniel Harrison
University of Maryland Center for MS
110 S. Paca Street, 3rd floor
Baltimore, MD 21201