Peter Todd

Peter Todd, MD, PhD

Bucky and Patti Harris Professor of Neurology
Associate Professor, Neurology


Peter K. Todd, M.D., Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the Department of Neurology in the University of Michigan Medical School.

Dr. Todd earned his Bachelor of Science degree in 1994 from the University of California, San Diego. He then entered the Medical Science Training Program at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where he completed his doctorate in 2002 and medical degree in 2004. His Ph.D research focused on synaptic defects in Fragile X Syndrome, a common inherited cause of cognitive impairment in children.

He completed his internship and residency at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. While there, he did research on the role of the ubiquitin proteasome system and autophagy in Spinal and Bulbar Muscular Atrophy, a polyglutamine disorder, and Fragile X Tremor Ataxia Syndrome (FXTAS). He came to the U-M in 2008 for a clinical and research fellowship in movement disorders and neurogenetics.

Todd joined the U-M faculty in 2010 as an assistant professor in movement disorders and neurogenetics, working in the laboratory of Henry L. Paulson, M.D., Ph.D., in the Center for Neurodegenerative Research.

His current research is focused on the mechanisms underlying RNA-mediated neurodegeneration in FXTAS and myotonic dystrophy, and how these mechanisms may overlap and inform our understanding of other neurodegenerative disorders. He also sees patients with movement disorders and inherited neurological disease.

Dr. Todd has received several academic awards, including a Howard Hughes Undergraduate Research Fellowship, the Francis M. Forester Prize for promise as an academic neurologist, the Samuel Ziritzky Prize for most outstanding research by a neurology resident at Penn and prizes for excellence in research at the International Conference on Unstable Microsatellites in Human Disease, and the U-M neuroscience day. Most recently, Dr Todd received the S. Weir Mitchell Alliance award from the American Academy of Neurology which each year recognizes one early investigator physician scientist who has made important contributions to basic science in neurological disorders.

A member of the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Neurology, he has served as an ad-hoc reviewer for the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Neurology, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Neuron, Science and Human Molecular Genetics.

His bibliography includes several peer-reviewed papers, editorials, book reviews and chapters, abstracts and online resources.


Co-Director, Multidiscplinary Ataxia Clinic, University of Michigan

Areas of Interest

The molecular pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders, most notably Fragile X Tremor Ataxia Syndrome, Myotonic Dystrophy, Polyglutamine Disorders and Alzheimer's Disease. Research is focused on the roles of RNA in neurological function and degeneration. Dr Todd is also interested in discovering new genes that cause inherited neurological disorders.

Clinical Interests

Parkinson's disease, Dystonia, Cerebellar Ataxia, Tremor and Chorea. All inherited neurological disorders, including Fragile X Related Disorders such as Fragile X Tremor Ataxia Syndrome and Fragile X Syndrome.

Honors & Awards

Phi Beta Kappa, Summa cum Laude and Honors in Biology, University of California, San Diego
Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society
Francis M Forster Award for Neurology Excellence, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine
Penn Pearl award for excellence in teaching, University of Pennsylvania Medical School.
Samuel Zeritsky Prize, University of Pennsylvania Medical School.
Alliance S. Weir Mitchell Award (Best young basic science neurology researcher), AAN
Hagerman Award for groundbreaking research on Fragile X-associated disorders – NFXF
Dean’s Award for Basic Science Research- University of Michigan Medical School
Derek Denny-Brown Young Neurological Scholar Award- American Neurological Association


Medical School or Training

  • University of Wisconsin School of Medicine & Public Health, 2004


  • University of Pennsylvania, Neurology, PA, 2008


  • Movement Disorders, University of Michigan Health System, 2009

Board Certification

  • Neurology

Web Sites