Donna Ferriero, MD, MS

Professor & Chair
Department of Pediatrics
+1 415 502-7319

Donna M. Ferriero, M.D. is Professor of Pediatrics and Neurology and Chair of the Department of Pediatrics and Physician-in-Chief of the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital. Dr. Ferriero is Director of the Neonatal Brain Disorder Laboratories and co-director of the Newborn Brain Research Institute at UCSF. Her laboratory has been critical in defining the role of oxidative stress during hypoxia-ischemia and the relationship of selectively vulnerable populations of neural cells during maturation-dependent injury. She has been recognized by the University and by her residents as an outstanding teacher, receiving the UCSF Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award in 1991, and the Robert B. Layzer Neurology Teaching Award in 1994. She is active in mentoring programs for medical students, residents and junior faculty, and she was recognized for these efforts with the UCSF Chancellor’s Award for the Advancement of Women in 2000 and the Maureen Andrew Mentor Award from the Society for Pediatric Research in 2006. She is a recipient of the Holly Smith Award for outstanding service to the School of Medicine . She is President-elect of the American University Professors of Neurology and President of the Child Neurology Society. She served on council for the American Neurological Association and American Pediatric Society and is past Chair of NIH NSD-A Study Section. She is currently on council for NINDS. She is on the editorial boards of Nature Clinical Practice Neurology, Pediatric Research (Associate Editor), Pediatric Neurology, Journal of Child Neurology, Journal of Pediatric Neurology, Current Pediatric Reviews, Current Opinions in Pediatrics (Neurology), and Annals of Neurology (Associate Editor for Child Neurology). She is the recipient of the 2000 Sydney Carter Award in Child Neurology for excellence and leadership in Child Neurology, and was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences in 2005. She received the Royer Award for Excellence in Academic Neurology in 2007 and the Willis Lecture for outstanding contributions to stroke research in 2010. She was recently elected to the Association of American Physicians.

Primary Thematic Area: 
Secondary Thematic Area: 
Tissue / Organ Biology & Endocrinology
Research Summary: 
We study the injury response in the developing brain after an ischemic insult and use this information to target therapies.



Postnatal polyunsaturated fatty acids associated with larger preterm brain tissue volumes and better outcomes.

Pediatric research

Kamino D, Studholme C, Liu M, Chau V, Miller SP, Synnes A, Rogers EE, Barkovich AJ, Ferriero DM, Brant R, Tam EWY

Early, Accurate Diagnosis and Early Intervention in Cerebral Palsy: Advances in Diagnosis and Treatment.

JAMA pediatrics

Novak I, Morgan C, Adde L, Blackman J, Boyd RN, Brunstrom-Hernandez J, Cioni G, Damiano D, Darrah J, Eliasson AC, de Vries LS, Einspieler C, Fahey M, Fehlings D, Ferriero DM, Fetters L, Fiori S, Forssberg H, Gordon AM, Greaves S, Guzzetta A, Hadders-Algra M, Harbourne R, Kakooza-Mwesige A, Karlsson P, Krumlinde-Sundholm L, Latal B, Loughran-Fowlds A, Maitre N, McIntyre S, Noritz G, Pennington L, Romeo DM, Shepherd R, Spittle AJ, Thornton M, Valentine J, Walker K, White R, Badawi N

Early changes in brain structure correlate with language outcomes in children with neonatal encephalopathy.

NeuroImage. Clinical

Shapiro KA, Kim H, Mandelli ML, Rogers EE, Gano D, Ferriero DM, Barkovich AJ, Gorno-Tempini ML, Glass HC, Xu D

Effects of therapeutic hypothermia on white matter injury from murine neonatal hypoxia-ischemia.

Pediatric research

Koo E, Sheldon RA, Lee BS, Vexler ZS, Ferriero DM