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Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

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Neuromuscular Research


Program Director: Craig McDonald, M.D.
Associate Research Director:
Erik Henricson, M.P.H.


The UC Davis Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation's Neuromuscular Research team is actively involved in many vital research endeavors designed to improve the lives of people with neuromuscular diseases (NMDs). Our research program focuses on understanding the causes of diseases and their secondary conditions, improving preventative care, and developing better therapies using state of the art technologies and innovative approaches to the study of disease.

Our team works directly with individuals with neuromuscular diseases, and works to serve the local and global community by providing educational and technical assistance and service.  With expertise in the design and evaluation of clinical and patient-reported outcome measures, we work alongside other worldwide leaders in academia and the pharmaceutical industry to design and conduct clinical trials that test new treatments for people with NMDs.  Recently, our work in validating the 6-minute walk test in boys with Duchenne muscular dystrophy has led to the test being adopted as a gold-standard outcome measure for multiple international clinical trials focused on the disease.  Our researchers also serve in leadership and advisory roles for national and international organizations such as the the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) NeuroNEXT clinical research consortium, the Cooperative International Neuromuscular Research Group and the European Treat-NMD neuromuscular disease research collaboration. 

The UC Davis Neuromuscular Research group has a 30-year history as a National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) funded Rehabilitation Research and Training Center in Neuromuscular Diseases (RRTC/NMD).  The mission of the RRTC/NMD is to improve the lives of individuals with neuromuscular diseases, and their families, by developing and evaluating new strategies to address lifelong needs for health care, rehabilitation, psychosocial well-being, education, employment, and independent living.

RRTC/NMD also provides a comprehensive training and information dissemination program which is relevant to consumer needs. We are dedicated to the concepts of access, inclusion, and consumer participation in research.

To learn more about UC Davis Neuromuscular Research, please explore the links to the right: