avatar for Gary Mathern, MD

Gary Mathern, MD

Director, Pediatric Epilepsy Surgery Program
Los Angeles, California

Dr. Mathern, pioneer of the lateral hemispherotomy technique, holds the Dr. Alfonsina Q. Davies Endowed Chair for Epilepsy Research in Honor of Paul Crandall, MD at the University of California, Los Angeles where he also serves as the neurosurgical director of pediatric epilepsy surgery program. He is internationally recognized for advancements in epilepsy research. He has published more than 200 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters that address clinical and basic science aspects of pediatric epilepsy surgery, including newer imaging techniques, improving surgical techniques, long-term outcomes and rehabilitation using neuroplasticity. His laboratory research has characterized genomic abnormalities, neuroanatomy and cellular properties in cortical dysplasia, Rasmussen Encephalitis, and other etiologies related to epilepsy surgery in children.

Dr. Mathern is the recipient of the William G. Lennox Award for lifetime accomplishments in epilepsy from the American Epilepsy Society. His TEDx talk, “What Can You Do with Half a Brain?” spotlights hemispherectomy patients who became seizure-free after the surgery and grew up to ride bikes, drive and graduate from high school.

His passion for research began during his residency in the laboratory of Thomas L. Babb, PhD. He has been recognized with a Milken Family Foundation Young Investigator Award in 1991, the James A. Shannon Director’s Award from NIH in 1998, and a Clinical Investigator Development Award (K08) in 1993.

Dr. Mathern serves the epilepsy community through appointments with the American Epilepsy Society, National Institutes for Health, and the Epilepsy Foundation. He is one of the editors-in-chief of Epilepsia and Epilepsia Open from the International League Against Epilepsy. He is a founding board member of The Brain Recovery Project: Childhood Epilepsy Surgery Foundation.