CPODDcolor with R centered

The UAB Center for Pediatric-Onset Demyelinating Disease (CPODD) is one of the founding Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Centers of Excellence in the country designated and funded in 2006 by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. It was established by a grant awarded to the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Department of Pediatrics, and operates at Children’s of Alabama.

CPODD strives toward the achievement of three important goals:

  • Clinical Excellence: To provide comprehensive multi-disciplinary care for children and teens with MS and other central nervous system demyelinating diseases.

  • Education: To provide up-to-date, accurate information about MS and related disorders to patients and families, schools, health care providers, and the public at large.

Research: To build a multi-ethnic cohort of children and teens from the Southeast with demyelinating diseases and carefully characterize this patient population with respect to clinical presentation, neuroimaging and laboratory findings, treatment regimen, cognitive functioning, quality of life measures and long-term functional outcome.

CPODD Team

Jayne M. Ness, M.D., Ph.D. - Pediatric neurologist
Khurram Bashir, M.D., MPH - Neurologist
Lydia Marcus, M.D. - Pediatric neurologist
Yolanda Harris, Ph.D., CRNP, CPNP-AC, MSCN - Pediatric nurse practitioner
Sarah M Dowdy, MPH - Research administrator

Multidisciplinary care is available through multiple subspecialties including neuropsychology, rehabilitation medicine, pediatric urology, pediatric neuroradiology, and neuroophthalmology

Jayne Ness, M.D., Ph.D.

Jayne Ness, M.D., Ph.D.

Professor, Division of Pediatric Neurology

Education
Medical School: University of Iowa College of Medicine
Residency: Child Neurology – University of Alabama at Birmingham

Research Interests: pediatric demyelinating disorders, including multiple sclerosis, transverse myelitis, optic neuritis and acute disseminated encephalomyelitis

Khurram Bashir, M.D., MPH

Khurram Bashir, M.D., MPH

Professor, Department of Neurology
Vice Chair for Education, Department of Neurology
Director, Division of Neuroimmunology and Multiple Sclerosis
Co-Director, Multiple Sclerosis Center
Co-Director, Center for Pediatric Onset Demyelinating Diseases
Director, Neurology Residency Training Program
Medical Director, Graduate Medical Education, UAB University Hospital

Education
Residency: Combined Internal Medicine and Neurology - Southern Illinois University School of Medicine
Fellowship: Neuroimmunology and Multiple Sclerosis – University of Alabama at Birmingham
Master of Public Health: Epidemiology – University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health
Certificate in Healthcare Quality and Safety: University of Alabama at Birmingham

Research Interests: design and conduct of clinical trials in multiple sclerosis, epidemiology of multiple sclerosis and study of biomarkers and mechanisms of progression in multiple sclerosis.

Lydia Marcus, M.D.

Lydia Marcus, M.D.

Assistant Professor, Division of Pediatric Neurology

Education
Medical School: University of Alabama at Birmingham
Residency: Child Neurology – University of Alabama at Birmingham
Fellowship: Neuroimmunology and Multiple Sclerosis fellowship – University of Alabama at Birmingham

Research Interests: neuroimmunology, pediatric multiple sclerosis, acute flaccid myelitis, and autoimmune encephalitis

Yolanda Harris, Ph.D., CRNP, CPNP-AC, MSCN

Yolanda Harris, Ph.D., CRNP, CPNP-AC, MSCN

Assistant Professor, School of Nursing
Research scientist, UAB MS Center

Education
Masters of Nursing in Pediatric Nursing: University of Alabama at Birmingham
Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing Science: University of Alabama at Birmingham

Dr. Harris' practice initiatives focus on providing care for children and families that are affected by demyelinating diseases of the central nervous system in the UAB Center for Pediatric Onset Demyelinating Disease. Her prior training in adolescent medicine and her 20 years of experience at Children's of Alabama in the Special Care Unit are utilized to provide holistic care to patients and families from all the Southeastern States. She is an integral part of a multi-disciplinary team of experts at the center.

Sarah Dowdy, MPH

Sarah Dowdy, MPH

Research Administrator, Division of Pediatric Neurology

Education
University of Alabama at Birmingham, School of Public Health

Provides administrative support to overall center efforts, primarily research management.