John Fink, MD

John Fink, M.D.

Professor, Neurology
Director, Neurogenetics


John K. Fink, MD, is a professor in the Department of Neurology and director of the Neurogenetic Disorders Program in the University of Michigan Medical School. He directs basic science laboratory research focused on identifying genes and mechanisms responsible for age-dependent neurologic degeneration; and on developing treatments for these conditions.

Dr. Fink's laboratory investigates the molecular basis of inherited neurologic and psychiatric disorders. His clinical expertise focuses on inherited and degenerative disorders of the nervous system. Dr. Fink evaluates individuals of all ages, from infancy through senescence with these disorders, which include lysosomal storage disorders (such as Gaucher disease, Niemann-Pick disease and Fabry disease), ataxias (including Friedreich's ataxia), leukodystrophies (such as Krabbe, CADASIL and adrenoleukodystrophy), familial dystonia, primary lateral sclerosis, Wilson's disease, familial motor neuron disease (including familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), familial dementia, and a group of inherited spinal cord disorders known collectively as the Hereditary Spastic Paraplegias (HSPs).

Dr. Fink came to the University of Michigan in 1990 as an assistant professor of neurology and director of the Neurogenetic Disorders Clinic. The program provides care and evaluation for individuals and families with inherited and degenerative neurologic disorders; and clinical and molecular laboratory training for physicians and scientists studying these disorders. He was promoted to associate professor in 1996 and professor in 2005.

Board-certified in neurology and medical genetics, Dr. Fink received his medical degree in 1980 from the Medical College of Ohio in Toledo. Following internship at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, he completed a neurology residency in 1984 at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. Subsequently, he trained in developmental and metabolic neurology and medical genetics at the National Institutes of Health.

Dr. Fink has served as the Medical Advisor to the Spastic Paraplegia Foundation since its establishment (2002), and serves as ad hoc reviewer for numerous journals and NIH study sections.

A member of the American Society of Human Genetics, American Academy of Neurology, American Neurological Association and the American College of Genetics, Dr. Fink received the Derek Denny-Brown Neurological Scholar Award from the American Neurological Association in 2002. In addition, he has been elected by peers to Best Doctors in America annually since 2001.

Clinical Interests

Neurology, neurogenetic disorders, inherited, developmental, and degenerative neurologic disorders including hereditary spastic paraplegia, primary lateral sclerosis, familial ataxia, and familial dystonia; lysosomal storage disorders including Gaucher disease, Niemann-Pick type C disease, and Fabry disease; enzyme replacement therapies for inherited neurologic disorders


Medical School or Training

  • Medical College of Ohio/University of Toledo, 1980


  • University of Virginia, Neurology, VA, 1984


  • Metabolic Neurology, National Institutes of Health, 1990

Board Certification

  • Neurology
  • Medical Genetics

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