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. 

Dr. Vernino specializes in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating autoimmune neurological disorders, autonomic disorders, and neuromuscular disorders.  He is the founding Director of the Autonomic Disorders Clinic, the multidisciplinary Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) Clinic, and the Autonomic Disorders Fellowship Program. He is also Co-Director of the Autoimmune Neurology Fellowship Program

Dr. Vernino earned his medical degree and Ph.D. degree in neuroscience at Baylor College of Medicine. He completed a neurology residency and fellowship training in neuroimmunology and electromyography (EMG) at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. He joined the UT Southwestern faculty in 2004.

Dr. Vernino holds the Dr. Bob and Jean Smith Foundation Distinguished Chair in Neuromuscular Disease Research and the Rex Griswold Distinguished Professorship in Multiple System Atrophy. He is the director of the autonomic disorders program and MSA Mutidisciplinary clinic. His primary research goal is improving the diagnosis and treatment of autoimmune and autonomic neurological disorders.  He also leads a number of clinical trials for autonomic disorders and autoimmune encephalitis.  

Most notably, 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.

He has been selected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology, the American Neurological Association and the American Autonomic Society. Dr. Vernino is board certified in neurology, neuromuscular medicine, and autonomic disorders. He serves as the president of the American Autonomic Society, the major professional society for the study of disorders of the autonomic nervous system.

Among his many professional activities, Dr. Vernino serves on the medical advisory boards of the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation, The Multiple System Atrophy Coalition, and Dysautonomia International. 

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

Graduate School
Baylor College of Medicine (1992)
Other Post Graduate Training
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

  • Autonomic effects of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors
  • Clinical treatment trials for autoimmune and autonomic disorders
  • Disorders of neuromuscular hyperexcitability
  • Paraneoplastic neurological syndromes
  • Serologic evaluation of patients with dysautonomia

Publications

Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Neurological autoimmune disorders with prominent gastrointestinal manifestations: A review of presentation, evaluation, and treatment.
Blackburn KM, Kubiliun M, Harris S, Vernino S, Neurogastroenterol. Motil. 2019 Apr e13611
Spinal nerve tolerance to single-session stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SAbR).
Hrycushko B, van der Kogel AJ, Phillips L, Folkert M, Sayre JW, Vernino S, Hassan-Rezaeian N, Foster RD, Yamada Y, Timmerman R, Medin PM, Int. J. Radiat. Oncol. Biol. Phys. 2019 Apr
Usefulness of Blood Pressure Variability Indices Derived From 24-Hour Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring in Detecting Autonomic Failure.
Lodhi HA, Peri-Okonny PA, Schesing K, Phelps K, Ngo C, Evans H, Arbique D, Price AL, Vernino S, Phillips L, Mitchell JH, Smith SA, Yano Y, Das SR, Wang T, Vongpatanasin W, J Am Heart Assoc 2019 Apr 8 7 e010161
Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome: JACC Focus Seminar.
Bryarly M, Phillips LT, Fu Q, Vernino S, Levine BD, J. Am. Coll. Cardiol. 2019 Mar 73 10 1207-1228
Integrated Analysis of Droxidopa for the Treatment of Neurogenic Orthostatic Hypotension in Patients with Parkinson Disease.
Hauser RA, Biaggioni I, Hewitt LA, Vernino S Mov Disord Clin Pract 2018 Nov-Dec 5 6 627-634
Autoimmunity in postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome: Current understanding.
Vernino S, Stiles LE Auton Neurosci 2018 Apr
1.7 mutation in a carbamazepine-responsive patient with adult-onset painful peripheral neuropathy.
Adi T, Estacion M, Schulman BR, Vernino S, Dib-Hajj SD, Waxman SG Mol Pain 2018 Jan-Dec 14 1744806918815007
Faciobrachial dystonic spells: Presenting feature of autoimmune encephalopathy.
Dubey D, Alqallaf A, Warnack W, Gupta P, Harvey J, Vernino S Neurol India 2017 Sep-Oct 65 5 1149-1151
Managing neurogenic orthostatic hypotension in a patient presenting with pure autonomic failure who later developed Parkinson disease.
Gupta F, Kremens D, Vernino S, Karabin B Clin. Auton. Res. 2017 Jul 27 Suppl 1 9-11
Polypharmacy: droxidopa to treat neurogenic orthostatic hypotension in a patient with Parkinson disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Vernino S, Claassen D Clin. Auton. Res. 2017 Jul 27 Suppl 1 33-34

Books

Featured Books Legend Featured Books

Autoimmune Autonomic Failure. In Handbook of Clinical Neurology, Volume 117: Autonomic Nervous System

Muppidi S, Vernino S (2013). Elsevier

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 (2012-2019)
  • 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

  • Dysautonomia International (2014)
  • Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) Coalition (2013)
  • Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America (2007)
  • American Academy of Neurology
  • American Autonomic Society
  • American Neurological Association