Biography

Steven Vernino, M.D., Ph.D., is a Distinguished Teaching Professor and Vice Chair for Education and Faculty Affairs in the Department of Neurology at UT Southwestern Medical Center.  He joined the UT Southwestern Department of Neurology in 2004.

Clinical Interests. Dr. Vernino specializes in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating autoimmune neurological disorders, autonomic disorders, and neuromuscular disorders.  He is board certified in neurology, neuromuscular medicine, and autonomic disorders.  He is the founding Director of the multidisciplinary Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) Clinic, (which is designated as a Clinical Center of Excellence by the MSA Coaltion), and the Autonomic Disorders Clinic and Laboratory.  He has specific clinical interests in multiple system atrophy, pure autonomic failure, autoimmune autonomic disorders, postural tachycardia syndrome (POTS), myasthenia gravis, paraneoplastic neurological disorders and autoimmune encephalitis. 

Research.  Dr. Vernino has helped define the relationship between autoimmune disorders and disorders of the autonomic nervous system and identified the antibodies to ganglionic acetylcholine receptors as the cause of autoimmune autonomic ganglionopathy, a rare autonomic nervous system disorder. He has also characterized several neurological antibodies related to paraneoplastic disorders.  He has published more than 120 peer-reviewed articles and dozens of book chapters and reviews.

Trainee Education.  Dr. Vernino is active in teaching medical students, residents and fellows.  He served as neurology residency program director at UT Southwestern for 11 years.  He is director of the Autonomic Disorders Fellowship Program which is accredited by the UCNS.

Affiliations & Awards.
Among his many professional activities, Dr. Vernino serves on the Board of Directors of the American Autonomic Society and served as the president of AAS from 2020-2022.  He also serves on the medical advisory boards of the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America, Multiple System Atrophy Coalition, and Dysautonomia International. Dr. Vernino has been named as a Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology, the American Neurological Association and the American Autonomic Society.  

He has received numerous awards for his work as a clinician, researcher, and teacher, including the 1998 American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Founders Award, the 2013 AAN Program Director Recognition Award, and the 2018 University of Texas Regents Outstanding Teacher Award. He was inducted into the Southwestern Academy of Teachers in 2015.

Education

Other Post Graduate Training
Baylor College of Medicine (1992)
Graduate School
Baylor College of Medicine (1992)
Medical School
Baylor College of Medicine (1994)
Internship
Mayo Clinic (1995), Internal Medicine
Residency
Mayo Clinic (1998), Neurology
Fellowship
Mayo Clinic (1999), Neuroimmunology

Research Interest

  • Care models, diagnosis, and emerging treatments for multiple system atrophy (MSA)
  • Clinical phenotyping and outcome measure development for postural tachycardia syndrome (POTS)
  • Clinical treatment trials for autoimmune and autonomic disorders
  • Paraneoplastic neurological syndromes

Publications

Randomized controlled trial of intravenous immunoglobulin for autoimmune postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (iSTAND)
Vernino S, Hopkins S, Bryarly M, Hernandez RS, Salter A Clinical Autonomic Research 2024 Feb 34 153-163
Paraneoplastic autonomic neuropathies and GI dysmotility
Golden E, Vernino S 2024 Jan 275-282
Skin Biopsy Detection of Phosphorylated α-Synuclein in Patients with Synucleinopathies
Gibbons CH, Levine T, Adler C, Bellaire B, Wang N, Stohl J, Agarwal P, Aldridge GM, Barboi A, Evidente VG, Galasko D, Geschwind MD, Gonzalez-Duarte A, Gil R, Gudesblatt M, Isaacson SH, Kaufmann H, Khemani P, Kumar R, Lamotte G, Liu AJ, McFarland NR, Miglis M, Reynolds A, Sahagian GA, Saint-Hillaire MH, Schwartzbard JB, Singer W, Soileau MJ, Vernino S, Yerstein O, Freeman R JAMA 2024 331 1298-1306
VH2+ Antigen-Experienced B Cells in the Cerebrospinal Fluid Are Expanded and Enriched in Pediatric Anti-NMDA Receptor Encephalitis
Monson N, Smith C, Greenberg H, Plumb P, Guzman A, Tse K, Chen D, Zhang W, Morgan M, Speed H, Powell C, Batra S, Cowell L, Christley S, Vernino S, Blackburn K, Greenberg B Journal of Immunology 2023 Nov 211 1332-1339
Saturation mutagenesis of α-synuclein reveals monomer fold that modulates aggregation
Chlebowicz J, Russ W, Chen D, Vega A, Vernino S, White CL, Rizo J, Joachimiak LA, Diamond MI Science Advances 2023 Oct 9
The need for consistent clinical definitions in autonomic medicine
Vernino S Clinical Autonomic Research 2023 Jun 33 215-216
Autoimmune Encephalitis Misdiagnosis in Adults
Flanagan EP, Geschwind MD, Lopez-Chiriboga AS, Blackburn KM, Turaga S, Binks S, Zitser J, Gelfand JM, Day GS, Dunham SR, Rodenbeck SJ, Clardy SL, Solomon AJ, Pittock SJ, McKeon A, Dubey D, Zekeridou A, Toledano M, Turner LE, Vernino S, Irani SR JAMA neurology 2023 Jan 80 30-39
Clinical Reasoning: A 59-Year-Old Man with Thymoma and Constitutional Symptoms, Seizures, and Multifocal CNS Lesions
Stopschinski BE, Fredrich S, Vernino S, Phillips L, Blackburn KM Neurology 2022 Dec 99 1115-1121
Responsiveness of UMSARS and other clinical measures in a longitudinal structured care clinic for multiple system atrophy
Golden EP, McCreary M, Vernino S Clinical Autonomic Research 2022 Dec 32 477-484
Refractory Anti-NMDA Receptor Encephalitis in Early Pregnancy: A Case Report of Treatment Course and Pregnancy Outcomes
Fredrich S, Wang C, Narayan R, Tardo L, Blackburn KM, Vernino S Neurology: Neuroimmunology and NeuroInflammation 2022 Sep 9

Honors & Awards

  • President
    American Autonomic Society (2020-2022)
  • Fellow
    American Autonomic Society (2018)
  • University of Texas Regents Outstanding Teacher Award
    (2016)
  • UT Southwestern Academy of Teachers
    (2014)
  • Program Director Recognition Award
    American Academy of Neurology (CNPD) (2013)
  • Best Doctors
    D Magazine (2012-2023)
  • Fellow
    American Academy of Neurology (2007)
  • Fellow
    American Neurological Association (2005)
  • Founders Award for Clinical Research
    American Academy of Neurology (1998)
  • Woltman Award for Clinical Neurology
    Mayo Clinic (1998)
  • DeBakey Scholar Award
    Baylor College of Medicine (1994)
  • Rush Record Excellence in Neuroscience Award
    Baylor College of Medicine (1992)

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Academy of Neurology
  • American Autonomic Society
  • Dysautonomia International (2014)
  • Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) Coalition (2013)