News & Updates
Find A Specialist
Resource Finder at Kennedy Krieger Institute
A free resource that provides access to information and support for individuals and families living with developmental disabilities.
Mary Ann Wilson, Ph.D.
Kennedy Krieger Institute
707 N. Broadway
Baltimore, MD 21205
Phone: (443) 923-2690
Lab: (443) 923-2694
Dr. Mary Ann Wilson is a research scientist at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. She is also an associate professor in the Departments of Neurology and Neuroscience at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
Dr. Wilson received her bachelor's of arts in both art and physiology from the University of California at Berkeley before coming to Johns Hopkins for a doctoral degree in biochemistry, cellular and molecular biology, which she received in 1990. She held post-doctoral fellowships at Hopkins’ Department of Neuroscience and Kennedy Krieger Institute's neuroscience lab before joining the research faculty at Kennedy Krieger Institute in 1994.
Dr. Wilson was elected to Phi Beta Kappa at UC-Berkeley in 1982, and received her degree in physiology with honors. She was awarded a pre-doctoral fellowship in systems and integrative biology at UC-Berkely in 1982, and was awarded a pre-doctoral fellowship in biochemistry, cellular and molecular biology at Hopkins in 1983.
Excitatory amino acids are important neurotransmitters in the developing brain, but excess stimulation of EAA receptors can injure nerve tissue. Excitatory amino acids contribute to many forms of acute and chronic neuronal injury including hypoxia/ischemia, status epilepticus, trauma and neurodegenerative diseases such as Huntington's and Parkinson's disease. The developing brain is particularly vulnerable to excitotoxic injury, due in part to the expression of immature glutamate receptors.
Dr. Wilson studies the developing brain's responses to excitotoxic injury and toxins, in order to develop strategies to prevent or reduce neuronal damage. Dr. Wilson works to relate changes in the expression of glutamate receptors and other genes to changes in the vulnerability of particular cell groups to injury.