Scellig Stone MD

Scellig S. D. Stone, MD, PhD, FRCSC

Director, Movement Disorders and Deep Brain Stimulation Program; Associate in Neurosurgery

Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School

"Giving a child the ability to reach his or her full potential is something that motivates my work every day."

Medical Services

Specialties

  • Epilepsy Surgery
  • Endoscopy
  • Functional Neurosurgery
  • Neurosurgery
  • Movement Disorders
  • Chiari Malformations
  • Brain Tumors
  • Congenital Anomalies
  • Neurotrauma
  • Spinal Cord Tumors
  • Tethered Spinal Cord
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Endoscopic Third Ventriculostomy
  • Choroid Plexus Cauterization CPC
  • Minimally Invasive Surgery

Departments

  • Neurosurgery

Languages

  • English

Programs

  • Epilepsy Center
  • Movement Disorders and Deep Brain Stimulation Program
  • Neurosurgical Service
To schedule an appointment: Call 617-355-6008 or Request an Appointment
Scellig Stone MD

I was inspired to become a neurosurgeon by my 10th grade biology teacher, who taught me to how push myself to accomplish my goals and exposed me to basic neuroscience research. 

I remember seeing a video in high school of a patient being treated by an early form of deep brain stimulation (a field that I am now advancing in children). I was amazed at the ability of surgeons to alter brain function in a targeted way and alleviate a debilitating movement disorder. I have always been fascinated by the nervous system and neurological diseases, and knew at that point that I wanted to become a neurosurgeon. 

My approach to care reflects the work ethic that this influential teacher and my parents instilled in me as well as the satisfaction I get from helping a child suffering from neurologic illness. I find working with kids inspiring. They are usually much braver patients than adults and their potential for recovery is often great. Giving a child the ability to reach his or her full potential is something that motivates my work every day.

I was raised and trained in Canada and learned a lot about both science and working with kids from my parents, older brother and spouse. My father is a biologist, my mother is an elementary school teacher, my brother is a climate physicist and my wife is a pediatric nurse.

I have trained as a pilot as well as a SCUBA diver. I am proud to be practicing neurosurgery at Boston Children's Hospital because of the tremendous support and opportunity to pioneer new approaches. 

Experience and Education

Education

Undergraduate Degree

Queen’s University, 1999

Kingston, Canada

Medical Degree

University of Toronto, 2003

Toronto, Canada

Graduate Degree

University of Toronto, 2012

Toronto, Canada

Residency

Neurosurgery-University of Toronto, 2003-2013 (including PhD)

Toronto, Canada

Fellowship

Pediatric Neurosurgery-Boston Children’s Hospital, 2013-2014

Boston, Massachusetts

Professional History

My practice is focused mainly on functional disorders in children, where I am primarily advancing a treatment called deep brain stimulation to calm involuntary and disabiling motions in children with dystonia.

I hold both a medical degree and a PhD in neuroscience from the Institute of Medical Science at the University of Toronto, training that gives me a unique perspective on the treatment of neurosurgical patients. I completed the prestigious Shillito neurosurgical fellowship at Boston Children's Hospital in 2014, and am the founding surgical director of our department's movement disorders and deep brain stimulation program.

My clinical work focuses primarily on dystonia, a movement disorder in which faulty brain signals cause involuntary muscle contractions in children. I specialize in deep brain stimulation, a surgical procedure in which I implant electrodes on different targets in the brain to deliver electrical stimulation to those areas via a simultaneously-implanted pacemaker-like device called a neurostimulator. Deep brain stimulation is currently indicated for primary dystonia, and holds enormous future potential for other conditions.

I also run a general neurosurgical practice, encompassing areas such as brain tumors, neuroendoscopy and epilepsy surgeries. I am a passionate advocate for dystonia awareness and the potential application of deep brain stimulation for patients, and have been an invited speaker locally and internationally on the topic.

As a surgeon-scientist, I am interested in encouraging functional regeneration and repair of the brain using targeting therapies such as deep brain stimulation.  Through understanding mechanisms of adult neurogenesis and neurostimulation, I am hopeful that we will be able to harness intrinsic brain mechanisms to repair and restore damaged and diseased brain.

Research

I conduct research efforts to advance deep brain stimulation, neuroendoscopic approaches to surgery, and memory and cognition, drawing on a deep training in basic science to propel these efforts.

My clinical practice focuses on the use of deep brain stimulation in children, which is currently approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat primary dystonia under a Humanitarian Device Exemption. Used primarily for Parkinson's disease in adults, deep brain stimulation has been tried in many conditions including psychiatric diseases, epilepsy and cognitive impairment.

As a researcher, I am interested in other applications of deep brain stimulation, including its uses in cognitive impairment and to restore memory, as well as new potential targets for stimulation that may better ameliorate movement disorders. In the clinic, I am also working to identify better targets for deep brain stimulation in the hopes of helping more children with diseases of brain function.

My PhD thesis focused on neurogenesis, or the regrowth of brain cells, and memory enhancement. A key publication to build off my dissertation demonstrated, in animal models, that deep brain stimulation can cause new brain cells to grow and become connected, resulting in memory improvement.

As a doctorate in neuroscience, I achieved the highest possible level of training to conduct basic research. I earned the Canadian Institutes of Health Research Bisby Fellowship Award in 2008, a major national prize honoring and supporting my PhD research. 

I also study less invasive ways to perform neurosurgery. Together with Dr. Ben Warf, I catalogued the efficacy of a novel, low-cost endoscopic surgery for hydrocephalus in North America. With Dr. Joseph Madsen, I have studied MRI-guided laser ablation in epilepsy.

My basic science research has led to several important publications that are shaping understanding of deep brain stimulation and its potential, as well as neuroendoscopic approaches in multiple surgical situations. These include:

Hamani C, Stone S, Laxton A, Lozano AM. The pedunculopontine nucleus and movement disorders: anatomy and the role for deep brain stimulation. Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2007;13 Suppl 3:S276-80.

Hamani C, Stone SS, Garten A, Lozano AM, Winocur G. Memory rescue and enhanced neurogenesis following electrical stimulation of the anterior thalamus in rats treated with corticosterone. Exp Neurol. 2011 Nov;232(1):100-4.

Stone SS, Teixeira C, Zaslavsky K, Wheeler A, Martinez-Canabal A, Wang A, Sakaguchi M, Lozano A, Frankland P. Functional convergence of developmentally- and adult- generated granule cells in dentate gyrus circuits supporting hippocampus-dependent memory. Hippocampus. 2011 Dec;21(12):1348-62.

Stone SS, Teixeira CM, DeVito LM, Zaslavsky K, Josselyn SA, Lozano AM, Frankland PW. Stimulation of entorhinal cortex promotes adult neurogenesis and facilitates spatial memory. J Neurosci. 2011 Sep 21;31(38):13469-84.

Stone S D (2012). Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis and Memory Enhancement. (Doctoral Thesis). Available from: U. of Toronto Research Repository T-Space [http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32906

Stone SSD, Frankland PW. Adult hippocampal neurogenesis and memory. In: Giese KP (ed). Memory mechanisms in health and disease: mechanistic basis of memory, 2012. World Scientific Publishing.

Gross BA, Stone SS, Smith ER. Occipital pial synangiosis. Acta Neurochir (Wien). 2014 Jul;156(7):1297-300.

Stone SS, Warf BC. Combined endoscopic third ventriculostomy and choroid plexus cauterization as primary treatment for infant hydrocephalus: a prospective North American series. J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2014 Nov;14(5):439-46.

Stone S, Alterman RL. Deep brain stimulation for dystonia. In: Youmans JR, Winn HR (eds). Youmans neurological surgery - 7th edition, 2015. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders/Elsevier. [under review]

Stone SS, Cohen AR. Pineal region tumors. In: Jallo GI, Kothbauer K, Recinos V (eds).
Handbook of pediatric neurosurgery, 2015. NY: Thieme. [under review]
Stone SS, Madsen JR. MRI-guided stereotactic laser ablations for pediatric temporal lobe epilepsy. 2015. [In Preparation]

Publications

Publications powered by Harvard Catalyst Profiles
  1. Jernigan SC, Stone SS, Aronson JP, Putman M, Proctor MR. Episodic ventriculomegaly due to hypernatremia mimicking shunt malfunction: case report. J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2015 Oct; 16(4):406-9.
  2. Marano PJ, Stone SS, Mugamba J, Ssenyonga P, Warf EB, Warf BC. Reopening of an obstructed third ventriculostomy: long-term success and factors affecting outcome in 215 infants. J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2015 Apr; 15(4):399-405.
  3. Laxton AW, Stone S, Lozano AM. The neurosurgical treatment of Alzheimer's disease: a review. Stereotact Funct Neurosurg. 2014; 92(5):269-81.
  4. Stone SS, Warf BC. Combined endoscopic third ventriculostomy and choroid plexus cauterization as primary treatment for infant hydrocephalus: a prospective North American series. J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2014 Nov; 14(5):439-46.
  5. Gross BA, Stone SS, Smith ER. Occipital pial synangiosis. Acta Neurochir (Wien). 2014 Jul; 156(7):1297-300.
  6. Di Ieva A, Bruner E, Davidson J, Pisano P, Haider T, Stone SS, Cusimano MD, Tschabitscher M, Grizzi F. Cranial sutures: a multidisciplinary review. Childs Nerv Syst. 2013 Jun; 29(6):893-905.
  7. Girard JM, Stone SS, Lohi H, Blaszykowski C, Teixeira C, Turnbull J, Wang A, Draginov A, Wang P, Zhao XC, Ackerley CA, Frankland PW, Minassian BA. Phosphorylation prevents polyglucosan transport in Lafora disease. Neurology. 2012 Jul 3; 79(1):100-2.
  8. Stone SS, Teixeira CM, Devito LM, Zaslavsky K, Josselyn SA, Lozano AM, Frankland PW. Stimulation of entorhinal cortex promotes adult neurogenesis and facilitates spatial memory. J Neurosci. 2011 Sep 21; 31(38):13469-84.
  9. Hamani C, Stone SS, Garten A, Lozano AM, Winocur G. Memory rescue and enhanced neurogenesis following electrical stimulation of the anterior thalamus in rats treated with corticosterone. Exp Neurol. 2011 Nov; 232(1):100-4.
  10. Leslie AT, Akers KG, Krakowski AD, Stone SS, Sakaguchi M, Arruda-Carvalho M, Frankland PW. Impact of early adverse experience on complexity of adult-generated neurons. Transl Psychiatry. 2011 Aug 30; 1:e35.
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  12. Hamani C, Mayberg H, Stone S, Laxton A, Haber S, Lozano AM. The subcallosal cingulate gyrus in the context of major depression. Biol Psychiatry. 2011 Feb 15; 69(4):301-8.
  13. Stone SS, Teixeira CM, Zaslavsky K, Wheeler AL, Martinez-Canabal A, Wang AH, Sakaguchi M, Lozano AM, Frankland PW. Functional convergence of developmentally and adult-generated granule cells in dentate gyrus circuits supporting hippocampus-dependent memory. Hippocampus. 2011 Dec; 21(12):1348-62.
  14. Hamani C, Dubiela FP, Soares JC, Shin D, Bittencourt S, Covolan L, Carlen PL, Laxton AW, Hodaie M, Stone SS, Ha Y, Hutchison WD, Lozano AM, Mello LE, Oliveira MG. Anterior thalamus deep brain stimulation at high current impairs memory in rats. Exp Neurol. 2010 Sep; 225(1):154-62.
  15. Stone SS, Rutka JT. Utility of neuronavigation and neuromonitoring in epilepsy surgery. Neurosurg Focus. 2008 Sep; 25(3):E17.
  16. Stone S, Bernstein M. Prospective error recording in surgery: an analysis of 1108 elective neurosurgical cases. Neurosurgery. 2007 Jun; 60(6):1075-80; discussion 1080-2.
  17. Hamani C, Stone S, Laxton A, Lozano AM. The pedunculopontine nucleus and movement disorders: anatomy and the role for deep brain stimulation. Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2007; 13 Suppl 3:S276-80.
To schedule an appointment: Call 617-355-6008 or Request an Appointment

Locations

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- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

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