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Department Faculty

Edward A. Burton, MD, DPhil, FRCP

Associate Professor of Neurology, Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry
Neurology appointments: 412-692-4920
Movement disorders clinic and patient inquiries: 412-692-4670
PIND (research laboratory): 412-648-9720


Edward Burton, MD, graduated Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery with Honors from the University of Birmingham Medical School, England, UK in 1991. He completed a general medicine residency in Oxford, UK and was admitted to Membership of the Royal College of Physicians in 1994. After neurology residency training in Birmingham, UK, he became a research training fellow at the University of Oxford, graduating Doctor of Philosophy in 2000. A postdoctoral fellowship in neurological gene transfer carried out at the University of Pittsburgh led to the degree of Doctor of Medicine with Honors from the University of Birmingham, England, UK, in 2003. He completed higher specialist training in neurology as Clinical Lecturer in Neurology at the University of Oxford, and was admitted to the specialist register of the General Medical Council (UK) in 2003. Between 2003 and 2004 he completed a clinical fellowship in movement disorders at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square, London. Dr. Burton was elected to Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians of London in May 2009.

Dr. Burton joined the faculty of University of Pittsburgh in 2004 and is currently Associate Professor of Neurology. He divides his time between providing clinical care to patients with movement disorders in the comprehensive movement disorders clinic at UPMC, carrying out research into neurodegeneration in the Pittsburgh Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases, and teaching in the medical school.

Dr. Burton's publications can be reviewed through the National Library of Medicine's publication database.

Clinical Interest
Parkinson’s disease and related disorders, including progressive supranuclear palsy, multiple system atrophy and corticobasal degeneration; Tremor; Dystonia; Botulinum toxin treatment for focal dystonia, sialorrhoea and hemifacial spasm.

Research Interests and Representative Recent Publications
Mechanisms and neuroprotection in neurodegenerative diseases, using novel zebrafish models and viral gene transfer.

Bai, Q., Garver, J. A., Hukriede, N. A., Burton, E. A. (2007).  Generation of a transgenic zebrafish model of Tauopathy using a novel promoter element derived from the zebrafish eno2 gene. Nucleic Acids Res. 35 (19), 6501-16

Bai, Q., Wei, X., and Burton, E. A. (2009).  Expression of a 12kb promoter fragment derived from the zebrafish enolase-2 gene in the zebrafish visual system.  Neurosci Lett.  449(3), 252-7.

Bai, Q. and Burton, E. A. (2009). Cis-acting elements responsible for dopaminergic neuron-specific expression of zebrafish slc6a3 (dopamine transporter) in vivo are located remote from the transcriptional start site. Neuroscience. 164(3),1138-51

Cannon, J., Sew, T., Montero, L., Burton, E. A., and Greenamyre, J. T. (2011). Pseudotype-dependent lentiviral transduction of astrocytes or neurons in the rat substantia nigra. Experimental Neurology. 228(1), 41-52

Van Laar, V. S., Arnold, B. A., Cassady, S. J., Chu, C. T., Burton, E. A., and Berman, S. B. (2011). Bioenergetics of neurons inhibit the translocation response of Parkin following rapid mitochondrial depolarization. Human Molecular Genetics. 20(5), 927-40

Bai, Q., Sun, M., Stolz, D. B., Burton, E. A. (2011). The major isoform of zebrafish P0 is a 23.5kDa myelin glycoprotein expressed in selected white matter tracts of the central nervous system. Journal of Comparative Neurology. 519(8),1580-96

Horowitz, M., Milanese, C., Di Maio, R. Hu, X., Montero, L. M., Sanders, L., Tapias, V., Sepe, S., van Cappellen, G., Burton, E. A., Greenamyre, J. T., Matsroberardino, P. G. (2011) Single-cell redox imaging demonstrates a distinctive response of dopaminergic neurons to oxidative insults. Antioxidants & Redox Signaling. 15(4), 855-71.

Cario, C. L., Farrell, T. C., Milanese, C. and Burton, E. A. (2011). Automated measurement of zebrafish larval movement. The Journal of Physiology. 589(15), 3703-8.

Farrell, T. C., Cario, C. L., Milanese, C., Vogt, A., Jeong, J.-H., Burton, E. A. (2011) Evaluation of spontaneous propulsive movement as a screening tool to detect rescue of Parkinsonism phenotypes in zebrafish models. Neurobiology of Disease. 44(1), 9-18. [Featured on the cover of the October 2011 issue of NBD]

Münzel, E., Schaefer, K., Obirei, B., Kremmer, E., Burton, E. A., Kuscha, V., Becker, C. G., Brösamle, C., Williams, A., Becker, T. (2012) Claudin k is specifically expressed in cells that form myelin during development of the nervous system and regeneration of the optic nerve in adult zebrafish. Glia. 60(2):253-70

Milanese, C., Sager, J. J., Bai, Q., Farrell, T. C., Cannon, J. R., Greenamyre, J. T., Burton, E. A. (2012) Hypokinesia and reduced dopamine levels in zebrafish lacking β- and γ1-synucleins. J Biol Chem. 287(5):2971-83 [Featured on the cover of the January 27, 2012 issue of JBC]

Sager, J.J., Torres, G.E., Burton, E. A. (2012) The zebrafish homologue of the human DYT1 dystonia gene is widely expressed in CNS neurons but non-essential for early motor system development. PLoS ONE. 7(9):e45175

Research Grant Support
Dr. Burton’s research is currently supported by:

  • The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
  • The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
  • The National Science Foundation
  • The Department of Veterans' Affairs
  • The Ethel Vincent Charitable Trust
  • The Blechman Foundation
  • The Bachmann-Strauss Foundation

Dr. Burton

Dr. Burton