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John A. Stanford, PhD

Professional Background

I am a Professor in the Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, where I have been faculty member since 2004. I am also the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Education in the School of Medicine. I serve as the Program Director of the Kansas IDeA Network for Biomedical Research Excellence. I am a Fellow of the American Society for Neural Therapy and Repair, where I serve on its Program and Education Committees.

Education and Training
  • BA, Psychology, University of Mississippi
  • MA, Psychology, University of Kansas
  • PhD, Psychology, University of Kansas
  • Post Doctoral Fellowship, Neurobiology of Aging, University of Colorado & University of Kentucky



My research is focused on diseases and conditions that affect motor function, such as Parkinson's disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), neonatal jaundice, and aging. My approach is best described as a systems neuroscience approach using operant behavioral methods in rodent models. I have a longstanding interest in determining mechanisms that underlie orolingual motor deficits in aging and in ALS. My lab was the first to report bulbar deficits in the mouse and rat models of ALS. Recent efforts in my lab have focused on the effects of isometric strength training on disease progression in rat model of aging and ALS. I am also involved in research into determining the short- and long-term neurological effects of neonatal hyperbilirubinemia in rodent models of neonatal jaundice. Finally, I remain interested in the effects of a metabolic challenges on neural function to understand the co-morbidity between obesity and neurodegenerative diseases.