NASHVILLE, Tenn. ― Viji Santhakumar, Ph.D., has been elected to the American Epilepsy Society (AES) board of directors beginning at the conclusion of the Society's annual meeting in Nashville, Dec. 2-6, 2022. A medical and scientific society of more than 4,700 members, the AES is dedicated to advancing research and education for preventing, treating, and curing epilepsy.
Dr. Santhakumar is a professor of neuroscience in the Department of Molecular, Cell, and System Biology at the University of California, Riverside. Dr. Santhakumar’s research focuses on cellular, circuit, and neuro-immune mechanisms of epileptogenesis after traumatic brain injury and inhibitory circuit plasticity in acquired epilepsy. Studies from her lab have been published in the Annals of Neurology, the Journal of Neuroscience, and Neurobiology of Disease. Her research programs at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, Newark, (2009-2018) and University of California Riverside (2018-present) have been supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, NJCBIR, CURE, DoD, and the Epilepsy Foundation.
Dr. Santhakumar has been an active member of the AES for over 20 years. She has served as a member on AES committees and task forces including the Basic Science Committee, Scientific Program Committee, Awards and Recognition Committee, Investigator Workshop Committees, and the Basic Science Task Force. As co-chair of the Investigator Workshop Committee, she helped streamline the proposal submission process which helped enhance the Annual Meeting scientific content and engagement of the Basic Science Community. She also served as chair of the Scientific Program Committee. Dr. Santhakumar serves on NIH study sections and on journal editorial boards and was a contributing editor for Epilepsy Currents.
Dr. Santhakumar received her MBBS from Kilpauk Medical College in India and Ph.D. from the University of California, Irvine, and conducted postdoctoral training at the University of California, Los Angeles.