Amy K. Wagner, MD

Professor, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation


3471 Fifth Avenue, Suite 202
F: 412-692-4354
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MD, Northwestern University Medical School (1996)


The impact of gender and changes in neurochemistry on rehabilitation and treatment outcomes after traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Research Summary

Dr. Wagner is involved in both basic and clinical research concerning recovery outcomes after TBI. She is investigating the possible impact gender, neurotransmitters, and neurochemistry have on recovery outcomes after TBI. Currently, Dr. Wagner is utilizing fast scan cyclic voltammetry to assess, in vivo and in real time, striatal dopamine neurotransmission in an experimental model of TBI. Recently, she has begun to apply this technique to awake animals after TBI. Additionally, she is using MRI and PET technology to assess cortical-striatal integrity after TBI, Striatal receptor binding after TBI and the role that genetic variability may play with these to endpoints. Dr. Wagner is also evaluating the role that progesterone may play in ameliorating post traumatic seizures in experimental TBI. Additionally, she assessing the role that neuroendocrine hormones play in the evolution of secondary injury and recovery in a clinical population with TBI.

Summer Undergraduate Research Program



Wagner, A.K., Ren, D., Conley, Y., Ma, X., Kerr, M.E., Zafonte, R.D., Puccio, A.M., Marion, D.W. and Dixon, C.E. Gender and Genetic Associations with CSF Dopamine and Metabolite Production after Severe TBI. J Neurosurg. 106: 537-547, 2007.

Wagner, A.K., Chen, X., Kline, A.E., Zafonte, R.D. and Dixon, C.E. Gender and Environmental Enrichment Impact Dopamine Transporter Expression after Experimental Traumatic Brain Injury. Exp Neurol. 195(2): 475-483, 2005.

Wagner, A.K., Sokoloski, J.E., Ren, D., Chen, X., Khan, A.S., Zafonte, R.D., Michael, A.C. and Dixon, C.E. Controlled Cortical Impact Injury Affects Dopaminergic Transmission in the Rat Striatum. J Neurochem. 95(2): 457-465, 2005.

Wagner, A.K., Fabio, A., Puccio, A., Hirchberg, R., Li, W., Zafonte, R.D. and Marion, D.W. Gender Associations with Cerbrospinal Fluid Glutamate and Lactate/Pyruvate Levels after Severe Traumatic Brain Injury. Crit Care Med. 33(2): 407-413, 2005.

Wagner, A.K., Kline, A.E., Sokoloski, J., Zafonte, R.D., Williams, M., Capulong, E. and Dixon, C.E. Intervention with Environmental Enrichment after Experimental Brain Trauma Enhances Cognitive Recovery in Male but not Female Rats. Neurosci Lett. 334: 165-168, 2002.