Parkinson’s Experts Become Co-directors of New York University Movement Disorders Institute

Ana de Barros, PhD avatar

by Ana de Barros, PhD |

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Two Parkinson’s disease specialists have been named the co-leaders of a New York University movement disorders institute.

Drs. Andrew Feigin and Steven J. Frucht are co-executive directors of the Marlene and Paolo Fresco Institute for Parkinson’s and Movement Disorders at the university’s Langone Health Center.

“Having two movement disorders experts of Dr. Frucht’s and Dr. Feigin’s prominence is a tremendous benefit for our patients at the Fresco Institute, and for our health system’s overall research and education efforts,” Dr. Philip K. Moskowitz, chair of the medical center’s neurology department, said in a press release. “They have already demonstrated how to move their award-winning research into the clinical setting. We are thrilled these efforts will continue and flourish at NYU Langone.”

Feign joined NYU Langone on Oct. 1 as associate chair of neurology.

His previous job was director of the Experimental Therapeutics Division at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research’s Center for Neuroscience. He was a neurology professor at Langone Health from 1995 to 2009 while also serving at North Shore University Hospital.

One of his major research interests is using neuroimaging to assess the effects of movement disorder therapies, with the ultimate goal of improving treatments. He was an investigator on more than 30 clinical trials of potential treatments for Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease, and is in the midst of leading a large Huntington’s study.

Feigin is on the editorial boards of Neurology Today and the Journal of Huntington’s Disease and is chair of the Clinical Research Advisory Committee for the Huntington Study Group.

“We are learning more than ever before about movement disorders though scientific research, to reach our goal of better preventing and treating Parkinson’s and these other debilitating diseases,” he said.

Frucht joined NYU Langone in August as a neurology professor. He is also director of the medical center’s division of Parkinson’s and Movement Disorders.

Previously, Frucht was professor of neurology and director of the Movement Disorders Division of Mount Sinai Health System.

He has treated patients with a number of movement disorders, including Parkinson’s, dystonia, myoclonus, chorea, tremors, and tics. Dystonia is a condition whose hallmark is involuntary muscle contractions. Myoclonus is characterizied by quick, involuntary muscle twitching. And the hallmark of chorea is involuntary, unpredictable body movements.

Fructh helped develop a treatment for people with vocal tremors, spasmodic dysphonia, and myoclonus dystonia.

He has been editor of the Journal of Clinical Movement Disorders since 2014, and is a member of the International Movement Disorders Society’s Scientific Program Committee.

“Parkinson’s and other movement disorders require a full team treatment approach that does not stop in the clinic, but extends into the community, and I am honored to co-direct an institute with such robust programs and resources available to help New Yorkers,” Fructh said.

The Fresco Institute is a National Parkinson Foundation Center of Excellence. The institute treats people with Parkinson’s and other movement disorders. It also promotes Parkinson’s education and research, and works with patients and families on treatment goals and ways of enhancing quality of life.

The institute also offers psychosocial and psychological support servicesspecialized home services, and personalized physical exercise programs.