Alexis Simpkins, MD, PhD

alexis.simpkins@neurology.ufl.edu

Assistant Professor

Alexis N. Simpkins, MD, PhD is fellowship-trained vascular neurologist and is currently an Assistant Professor in the Vascular Division in the Department of Neurology at the University of Florida. Dr. Simpkins obtained a dual MD/PhD. at the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta, Georgia. Her graduate school thesis focused on neuroprotective and vascular protective effects of soluble epoxide hydrolase inhibitors in an animal model of stroke and vascular remodeling. After completing her medical internship at the Medical College of Georgia, she went on to complete her neurology residency at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. She then completed a clinical fellowship in vascular neurology at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) in the Stroke Branch, at the National Institute of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland. She stayed an additional 2 years to complete a clinical research fellowship to work on a combined MRI and blood biomarkers research project.

In addition to clinical care of patients presenting with cerebrovascular disease, Dr. Simpkins has been very involved in translational research, and funded through several NIH trainee grants. During graduate studies she conducted pre-clinical research on neuroprotectants from cerebral ischemia and vascular remodeling. She transitioned from a NIH T32 institutional training grant to an individual F31 fellowship award. During her neurology residency, she conducted in vitro research on microglial activation in a brain slice culture model of cerebral ischemia funded through the NIH R25 grant. During her 3 years of stroke fellowship, she was very involved in stroke community outreach, graduate medical education, and research focused on advanced MRI imaging and blood biomarkers in acute ischemic stroke. She has received several awards and accolades for her work including the First prize winner of the 2016 Stroke Progress and Innovation Award from the Stroke Journal given at the International Stroke Conference 2017. This award was given for manuscript, Simpkins AN, Dias C, Leigh R, on behalf of the NIH Natural History of Stroke Investigators. Identification of Reversible Disruption of the Human Blood-Brain Barrier following Acute Ischemia. Stroke. 2016 Sep; 47(9):2405-8. This manuscript was selected for this award from all manuscripts published in the journal from the year 2016. In addition she received the Donald J. Reis Memorial Trainee Award in 2007 given by the American Physiology Society for her pre-clinical research conducted during graduate school. Most recently, she has been accepted into the American Academy of Neurology’s TRANSCENDS Scholar program.

Clinical Interests

Ischemic stroke
Advance MRI imaging in stroke
Care coordination for stroke patients
Community outreach and education

Research Interests

Advanced MRI and stroke
Blood Biomarkers and stroke
Stroke Recovery

Teaching Interests

Providing education on diagnosis, management, and pathophysiology of stroke to trainees, medical students, fellows, and advanced practitioners.

Medical Education

Medical College of Georgia 2010

Internship

Medical College of Georgia, 2010-2011

Residency

Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD 2011-2014

Fellowship

Vascular Neurology Clinical Fellowship, Stroke Branch of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Institute of Health, Bethesda, MD (2014-2015)
Vascular Neurology Clinical Research Fellowship, Stroke Branch of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Institute of Health, Bethesda, MD (2015-2017)

Awards and Recognition

TRANSCENDS Scholar of the American Academy of Neurology 2017- current
First prize winner of the 2016 Stroke Progress and Innovation Award, awarded by the Stroke Journal
VA Chief of Neurology Award 2009, Medical College of Georgia

Publications

Simpkins AN, Dias C, Norato G, Eunhee K, Leigh R, on behalf of the NIH Natural History of Stroke Investigators. Early Changes in ADC Volume is an Imaging Biomarker of Early Neurologic Improvement in Ischemic Stroke Treatment. Cerebrovascular Diseases. Cerebrovasc Dis. 2017 Jul 7;44(3-4):141-149.

Simpkins AN, Dias C, Leigh R, on behalf of the NIH Natural History of Stroke Investigators. Identification of Reversible Disruption of the Human Blood-Brain Barrier following Acute Ischemia. Stroke. 2016; published online before print July 26 2016, doi:10.1161/STROKEAHA.116.013805

Tahsili-Fahadan P, Simpkins AN, Leigh R, Merino JG, Stuttering Lacunar Infarction Captured on Serial MRIs. Neurology: Clinical Practice. Published online March 21, 2016. DOI 10.1212/CPJ.0000000000000231.

Simpkins AN, Rudic RD, Roy S, Tsai HJ, Hammock BD, Imig JD. Soluble Epoxide Inhibition Modulates Vascular Remodeling. American Journal of Physiology – Heart and Circulatory Physiology. 2010 Mar: 298(3): H795-806.

Simpkins AN, Rudic RD, Schreihofer DA, Roy S, Manhiani M, Tsai HJ, Hammock BD, Imig JD. Soluble Epoxide Inhibition is Protective Against Cerebral Ischemia via Vascular and Neural Protection. The American Journal of Pathology. 2009 Jun; 174(6): 2086-2095.

For a complete listing of publications click here.