The University of Texas at Dallas School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Michael P. Kilgard

Margaret Fonde Jonsson Professor

Research Interests

Targeted Neural Plasticity for the treatment of stroke, autism, brain damage, spinal cord injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, tinnitus and pain.

Curriculum Vitae


Email: [email protected]
Phone: 972-883-2339
Office: BSB_14.102C
Campus Mail Code: GR41
Website: Cortical Plasticity Laboratory and
Texas Biomedical Device Center and
VNS Stroke Trial


Dr. Michael Kilgard is one of the leading researchers in the area of directing neural plasticity for the treatment of serious neurological and psychiatric disorders. He has developed precisely timed vagus nerve stimulation and has showed it can enhance plasticity and rehabilitation in multiple animal models and in patients with stroke and tinnitus. Dr. Kilgard’s earlier work was focused on stimulating neural plasticity using deep brain stimulation and on developing animal models of sensory, motor and communication disorders. He is the recipient of the outstanding teaching awards from UT Dallas and from the University of Texas System. He also was awarded the Krevans Distinguished Dissertation Award from the University of California, San Francisco, as well as Outstanding Geneticist of the Year from the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Kilgard earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley and his PhD from the University of California, San Francisco.

Recent and Selected Representative Publications

Book Chapters

Engineer, C.T., Centanni, T.M., Kilgard, M.P. In Hickok, Small (Eds) Rodent Models of Speech Sound Processing, Neurobiology of Language, Elsevier 2015.

Hays, S.A., Rennaker R.L., Kilgard M.P. (2014) Targeting Plasticity with Vagus Nerve Stimulation to Treat Neurological Disease. In Changing Brains — Applying Brain Plasticity to Advance and Recover Human Ability, Progress in Brain Research, 207:275-99, 2014

Recent Articles in Peer-Refereed Journals

Hulsey, D.R., Hays, S.A., Khodaparast, N., Ruiz, A., Das, P., Rennaker, R.L., Kilgard, M.P. (2016) Reorganization of Motor Cortex by Vagus Nerve Stimulation Requires Cholinergic Innervation. Brain Stimulation. (in press)

Dawson, J., Pierce, D., Anand, D., Kimberley, T.J., Robertson, M., Tarver, B., Hilmi, O., McLean, J., Forbes, K., Kilgard, M.P., Rennaker, R.L., Cramer, S., Walter, M., Navzer, E. (2016) Safety, Feasibility, and Efficacy of Vagus Nerve Stimulation Paired With Upper-Limb Rehabilitation After Ischemic Stroke. Stroke. 47:143-50.

Engineer, C.T., Rahebi K.C., Borland, M.S., Buell, E.P., Centanni, T.M., Fink, M.K., Im, K.W., Wilson, L.G., Kilgard, M.P. (2015) Degraded neural and behavioral processing of speech sounds in a rat model of Rett syndrome. Neurobiology of Disease. 83:26-34.

Hays, S.A., Khodaparast, N., Hulsey, D.R., Ruiz, A., Sloan, A.M., Rennaker, R.L. 2nd, Kilgard, M.P. (2014) Vagus nerve stimulation during rehabilitative training improves functional recovery after intracerebral hemorrhage. Stroke. 45:3097-100.