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NINDS's Nelson Wins Bernard Sachs Award

Dr. Karin Nelson, acting chief of the NINDS Neuroepidemiology Branch, received the 2004 Bernard Sachs Lectureship Award on Oct. 15 at the society's annual meeting in Ottawa, Canada. The award — sponsored by the Child Neurology Society — was established in 1981 to honor a scientist who emulates the spirit and excellence associated with Dr. Bernard Sachs, whose career contributions earned him the name "father of pediatric neurology."

Dr. Karin Nelson
Nelson earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Minnesota and her medical degree from the University of Chicago School of Medicine in 1957. She then trained in neurology at the University of Maryland, George Washington University and the National Hospital, Queen Square, London.

She joined NINDS in 1964 — following an academic child neurology practice at Children's Hospital in Washington, D.C. — to work on the institute's Collaborative Perinatal Project. The project was a large prospective study that followed 50,000 women throughout their pregnancies and their children through age 8.

During her tenure at NINDS, she has studied the natural history and etiology of major childhood neurological problems, focusing on cerebral palsy, epilepsy, neonatal seizures, febrile seizures and the neurological outcome in multiple births. In addition to her NINDS responsibilities, she also served as professor of neurology at George Washington University from 1970 to 1972. Nelson's recent work centers on analytic epidemiology and biomarkers in cerebral palsy and autism.

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