Vanderbilt Autonomic Dysfunction Center was established in 1978 as the first
international center for patient care, research, and training focusing
exclusively on disorders of the autonomic nervous system. Its creation
brought together in one site a cadre of physicians, scientists and nurses
who could foster a balanced scientific approach to elucidation of the
etiology and optimal therapy of these disorders. Over the years, many people
have contributed to this effort at Vanderbilt. Many of the young scientists
and physicians who have trained here have gone out and established similar
centers in other parts of the world. Others have taken positions at academic
research centers and pharmaceutical firms where they are seeking improved
drugs to treat these disorders.
in Vanderbilt's Autonomic Dysfunction Center have identified previously
unrecognized disorders, including dopamine-beta-hydroxylase deficiency, a
syndrome in which patients have a congenital absence of norepinephrine and
and norepinephrine transporter deficiency, a disorder in which there is
impaired clearance of norepinephrine from the synaptic cleft. Consequences
of mutations in the norepinephrine transporter gene are being examined.
The investigators have introduced novel therapeutic modalities for the
management of orthostatic hypotensive patients. They are also studying the
consequences of baroreflex failure in human subjects. Orthostatic
intolerance, nitric oxide mechanisms in blood pressure regulation, and the
dysautonomia of hypoglycemia are additional current research topics.
The faculty and staff of the Autonomic Dysfunction Center have established this website to introduce you to the research and patient care resources of the center.
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