2016 Richard Johnson Lectureship
Justin McArthur
The Johns Hopkins Hospital

Dr. Justin McArthur received his medical degree from Guys Hospital Medical School at the University of London. He then completed an internship and residencies in Internal Medicine and Neurology at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and a Masters degree in public health from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. Now a Professor of Neurology, Pathology, Medicine and Epidemiology, Dr. McArthur is nationally and internationally recognized for his work in the epidemiology and treatment of HIV infection, multiple sclerosis, and other neurological infections and immune-mediated neurological disorders. Dr. McArthur is the Director of the Department of Neurology and is also the Director of the Johns Hopkins/National Institute of Mental Health Research Center for Novel Therapeutics of HIV-associated Cognitive Disorders. The Center is comprised of an experienced interdisciplinary research. The aim is to translate discoveries of the pathophysiological mechanisms into novel therapeutics for HIV-associated cognitive disorders. The Center has been funded for 10 years under his leadership.

He has devoted his career to the investigation of the neurological manifestations of AIDS, and to neurological education. His major contributions have focused on epidemiology, pathogenic mechanisms and treatment of the neurological manifestations of HIV/AIDS. He has published over 340 original research articles, and has authored five textbooks.

His studies have defined the epidemiology of HIV-associated dementia and sensory neuropathy, and have detailed the incidence, prevalence, and risk factors for these diseases, showing the impact of antiretroviral therapy on them. He has examined the utility of novel therapeutic agents for HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders, HIV-associated sensory neuropathies, and PML. Through an NINDS program project grant (PI: Dr. David Clifford, Washington University), he has participated in an executive role for a 22 site consortium of academic centers with HIV neurological expertise, the Neurological AIDS Research Consortium. This consortium has facilitated the planning, implementation and completion of a number of clinical trials including a placebo-controlled trial of abacavir for HIV associated dementia, and a trial of cytosine arabinoside for PML. Dr McArthur has been the protocol chair on several national clinical trials of novel agents for HIV-associated sensory neuropathies, and has participated in the study design and data analysis in numerous other trials. Dr McArthur’s studies of pathogenesis have explored the mechanisms and biology of HIV infection of the nervous system. These studies have convincingly shown that HIV-associated neurological disease is associated with abnormal immune activation and oxidative stress. These have led to new targets for therapy, as well as novel biomarkers to screen and track neurological disease. With collaborators at JHU, he developed the technique of punch skin biopsy to evaluate epidermal innervation in a variety of sensory neuropathies. This technique has now been used in several clinical trials for both HIV- and diabetic neuropathies and has entered clinical practice as a useful tool to assess neuropathies. He was the founding director of the JHU Cutaneous Nerve laboratory

He has been very active in mentoring both at Hopkins and within the American Neurological Association, where he serves as the Chair of the Professional Development Committee. He was the recipient of the Department of Medicine Osler Housestaff Award in recognition of outstanding contributions to Housestaff teaching for four years, and the JHU Professor’s Award for Distinction in Teaching in the Clinical Sciences. He was inducted into the Miller-Coulson Academy of Clinical Excellence in 2014. The ISNV is pleased to host Dr. McArthur for the inaugural Richard Johnson Lectureship.