Jerrold Vitek

McKnight Professor and Chair


Dr. Jerry Vitek is the Head of the Neurology Department, Director of the Neuromodulation Research Program, and Center Director of the University of Minnesota Udall Center of Excellence for Parkinson's Research. He previously served as the Neuromodulation Research Center Director at the Lerner Research Institute of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation developing functional surgery and deep brain stimulation (DBS) techniques for the treatment of neurological disease. Dr. Vitek has also held faculty positions at Emory University and The Johns Hopkins University, where he assisted in the development of the functional neurosurgery programs and conducted research on the pathophysiology of movement disorders and mechanism(s) underlying the beneficial effects of DBS.He is currently the PI on several NIH-, foundation- and industry-funded grants, which include both non-human primate and human clinical studies on the neurophysiology of movement disorders and neuromodulation mechanisms. Dr. Vitek is also the PI for an industry-sponsored multicenter phase III pivotal clinical trial to investigate the safety and efficacy of a new neuromodulation device for the purposes of an FDA PMA submission. Many of his research projects involve close collaboration with other neurologists, neuroscientists, neurosurgeons, radiologists, and/or biomedical engineers. Much of this work has provided new insight into the neurophysiology of movement disorders and the therapeutic mechanisms of DBS and contributed to improvements in DBS surgery and treatment as well as the application of DBS to other neurological disorders.

Research Summary

Dr. Vitek directs a large interdisciplinary neuromodulation research program primarily centered on understanding the pathophysiology of movement disorders such as Parkinson's disease and dystonia as well as the mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effect of deep brain stimulation. Dr. Vitek serves as the principal investigator for both pre-clinical laboratory studies using animal models and clinical studies on human subjects/patients. Much of his work focuses on the ultimate translation of basic laboratory research discoveries into clinical treatment options for affected patients in order to reduce symptoms, minimize side effects and enhance function and quality of life. Dr. Vitek forms key collaborations with other experts in neurology as well as other disciplines such as neurosurgery, neuroscience, biomedical science, and radiology in addition to the medical industry to expedite and enhance new discoveries and their meaningful translation from "bench to bedside".

Clinical Summary

Parkinson's Disease; Dystonia; Tremor; Movement Disorders; DaTscan Imaging; Deep Brain Stimulation

Honors and Recognition

Academy of Excellence in Health Research, University of Minnesota
Selected Presentations

Selected Presentations

Vitek, J. L. "Evolution of Deep Brain Stimulation: Role of Technology", Biointerfaces Institute Distinguished Lectureship Series, University of Michigan, Virtual, November 09, 2021.
Department, U. L. "Evolution of Deep Brain Stimulation: Role of Technology", Institute for Engineering in Medicine Annual Conference, Univeristy of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, September 27, 2021.
Vitek, J. L. "Surgical Options for Parkinson’s Disease: What’s New, What’s Old and What’s on the Horizon,", WPC Virtual, World Parkinson Coalition, Virtual, May 18, 2021.



12-110 Phillips-Wangensteen Building
516 Delaware St SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Administrative Contact


Neurology Central Line: 612-626-6688

Academic Administrative Assistant

Shannon McCrady