W. Dalton Dietrich, III, PH.D.
Scientific Director, The Miami Project
Kinetic Concepts Distinguished Chair in Neurosurgery
Senior Associate Dean for Discovery Science
Co-Director, Institute for Neural Engineering
Professor, Neurological Surgery, Neurology, Biomedical Engineering and Cell Biology
The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis
1095 NW 14th Terrace (R-48)
Miami, FL 33136
Areas Of Research
Dr. Dalton Dietrich is Scientific Director at The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis and the Kinetic Concepts Distinguished Chair in Neurosurgery at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. He received his Ph.D. in Anatomy from the Medical College of Virginia in 1979 and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Pharmacology at Washington University, St. Louis, MO, 1981.
In 1981, Dr. Dietrich joined the Department of Neurology at the University of Miami, with a joint appointment in Cell Biology and Anatomy, and in 1993 attained the rank of Professor. Dr. Dietrich served as Vice-Chairman for Basic Science in the Department of Neurology from 1995 to 1997, when he accepted the position of Scientific Director of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. Dr. Dietrich also serves as the Senior Associate Dean for Discovery Science at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and Co-Director of the Institute for Neural Engineering at the University of Miami.
Neuroprotection and Improved Recovery of Function following Brain and Spinal Cord Injury
Research in Dr. Dietrich’s laboratory is focused on clarifying the pathophysiology of brain and spinal cord injury with the ultimate goal of developing new therapies to protect and enhance recovery of function. Over the last 40 years, Dr. Dietrich and colleagues have studied the cellular and molecular injury mechanism underlying various neurological disorders including stroke, cardiac arrest, traumatic brain and spinal cord injury. In terms of neuroprotection, he and his colleagues provided the initial preclinical data indicating that small differences in the temperature of the brain and spinal cord critically determine whether neurons die or not following neurological injury. These preclinical studies of therapeutic hypothermia have now been successfully translated to the clinical arena, where patients are being cooled following out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, strokes, traumatic brain injury and more recently spinal cord injury. Most recently, Dr. Dietrich and colleagues have investigated the importance of abnormal inflammasome activation in the brain and spinal cord after injury. These studies have uncovered a new therapeutic target for modifying the immediate immune response to injury. In addition to these studies, Dr. Dietrich and colleagues are using novel cellular and drug treatments to promote reparative processes and functional recovery after brain and SCI. He is the Sponsor of a first-in-man FDA approved clinical trial testing the safety of human Schwann cell transplants in people with severe SCI and a peripheral nerve bridging strategy for severe leg trauma.
Dr. Dietrich has published over 375 refereed journal articles, 75 book chapters and 4 books. His published work has been cited over 38,000 times. He has been listed by the Institute of Scientific Information as a “Highly Cited Researcher”, placing him in the top 0.5% of all scientists based on the impact his research has made on other scientists. Dr. Dietrich has been a thesis/dissertation advisor to 9 graduate students and has trained over 50 postdoctoral fellows and visiting scholars from all over the world. His research programs are supported by the NIH, Department of Defense, Veteran’s Administration, State of Florida and The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. He serves on many study sections for NIH, Department of Defense, Veteran’s Administration, and several Editorial Boards. He is currently Editor-in-Chief of the Journal Therapeutic Hypothermia & Temperature Management and Deputy Editor of the Journal of Neurotrauma. Dr. Dietrich is a founding member of InflamaCore and ACESO Therapeutics.
New Studies Using BrainQ (12/2019)
Reducing Damage After Spinal Cord Injury (The Project Fall 2017)
Schwann Cell Safety Trial Completed (3/3/2017)
Industry and Academia: Inflamacore, LLC (10/19/2016)
Research Journal Feature (09/01/2016)
Encouraging Traumatic Brain Injury Study Published (07/06/2016)
Schwann Cell Clinical Trial for Chronic SCI Approved (10/09/2014)
Society for Neuroscience
South Florida Veterans Affairs Foundation
The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis
International Society of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism
Robert W. Keane, PhD, W. Dalton Dietrich, PhD, Juan Pablo de Rivero Vaccari, PhD, Stephanie Adamczack, Ross Bullock MD, PhD, Michael Y. Wang, MD, Allan Levi, MD, PhD. Innate immune proteins as biomarkers for central nervous system injury. U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 15/214,868
Keane RW, Dietrich WD, de Rivero JP, Bramlett HM. Methods of Modulating Inflammasome Activity to treat Inflammatory Conditions. U.S. Patent Application: 14/219,857 (Other version)
Yan B, Guest JD, Dietrich WD, Pearse DD, Bunge MB, Levi A, Wood P. Production of human Schwann Cells: Provisional U.S. Patent application. March 20, 2016 (Provisional)
Gurney ME, Atkins CM, Adaikkalasamy DJ, Dietrich WD, Selective PDE4 B inhibition and improvement in cognition in subjects with brain injury. U.S. Patent Application No. 8,865,723. (Granted)
Keane RW, Dietrich WD, de Rivero JP, Bramlett HM. Modulating inflammasome activity in the central nervous system. US Patent Application No. 12/182,886. (Other version)
Keane RW, Dietrich WD, de Rivero JP, Bramlett HM. Compositions, kits and methods for determining drug efficiency and treating hair and skin diseases; U.S. Patent Application No. 61,310,45, March 4, 2010.
Robert W. Keane, PhD, W. Dalton Dietrich, PhD, Juan Pablo de Rivero Vaccari, PhD, Deborah Mash, PhD. Compositions, methods and kits for detecting and treating Alzheimer’s disease. U.S. Provisional Patent Application Serial No. 61/383,434, UMJ-176; U.S. Provisional Patent Application Serial No. 61,595,254, UML- 122, Filed: September 16, 2010.
LECTURE: Therapeutic Advances in the Treatment of Spinal Cord Injury using Biological and Engineering Approaches (January 9, 2020)