Release Date: February 12, 2019
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Gil I. Wolfe, MD, Irvin and Rosemary Smith Chair of the Department of Neurology in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University at Buffalo, has been elected president of the New York State Neurological Society (NYSNS). He assumed the presidency following the society’s annual graduate medical education conference held in New York City on Jan. 5.
The NYSNS promotes and advances the practice of neurology and quality of care for patients with neurological diseases in New York State. It serves to advocate for neurological patients and professionals in the state, and also offers educational programs for neurologists, neurologists-in-training and allied professionals.
A UB faculty member since 2012, Wolfe is one of the world’s leading experts on myasthenia gravis (MG), the most common disease of neuromuscular function. His research interests also include idiopathic and immune-mediated peripheral neuropathies.
Wolfe was lead author on a recent paper published in The Lancet Neurology that found that thymectomy (removing the thymus gland in patients with MG) provided clinical benefits for as long as five years.
That paper described the results of an extension study of a subset of MG patients who were involved in MGTX, an international trial that was one of the longest and largest clinical trials in the history of the disease. Wolfe was clinical chair and lead author of MGTX, which found that thymectomy was beneficial for MG patients without a chest tumor. MGTX was the first-ever randomized study since the surgery was first conducted in the 1940s to confirm that the procedure provided significant patient benefit.
Wolfe is president of UBMD Neurology, with locations in Williamsville and the Conventus building in Buffalo, where he sees patients.
He has authored or co-authored more than 120 scholarly papers and 20 chapters on neuromuscular disorders. His research has been funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke of the National Institutes of Health, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America, and the Food and Drug Administration.
In 2015, Wolfe was honored as the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation’s Doctor of the Year. In 2017, he was named a UB Distinguished Professor, and he received a SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities in 2018.
A fellow of the American Academy of Neurology and the American Neurological Association, Wolfe serves on the medical advisory boards for the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America, the Charcot-Marie-Tooth Association, and the GBS-CIDP Foundation International, which focuses on diseases such as Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) and chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP).
Before coming to UB, Wolfe was a professor of neurology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, where he served as vice chair and directed the neuromuscular program.
He lives in Buffalo, New York.