My parents inspired me to find a vocation that involved helping others. My fascination with the function of the human brain emerged in college, where I majored in philosophy. As a pediatric neurologist, I treat children and adolescents with movement disorders, including Tourette syndrome.

In my practice, I try to understand how neurological conditions and symptoms affect the child's life and function. With my work, I continually add to the field of neuroscience and find ways to apply new discoveries to improve children's quality of life.

Our team is pursuing multiple lines of research. We use transcranial magnetic stimulation to develop biomarkers of behavioral disorders and understand how the brain controls movement in healthy children and children affected by Tourette Syndrome, ADHD, and Neurofibromatosis. We hope to modulate the brain to improve symptoms. We participate in larger networks of researchers to identify new genes and do clinical trials of new medications.

In my free time, I’m an avid reader, and I also like to exercise and travel.

BA: Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, 1987.

MD: University of Michigan School of Medicine, Ann Arbor, MI, 1993.

MS: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, 2003.

Pediatrics, Child Neurology Residency: Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, 1998.

Certification: Board Certified in Neurology with Special Competence in Child Neurology, 2010; Board eligible in Pediatrics.

Appointment: Professor of Pediatric Neurology.


Movement disorders; Tourette syndrome; ataxia; dystonia; functional movement disorders; chorea; neurogenetics; ADHD

Services and Specialties

Neurology, Tourette Syndrome, Dystonia and Surgical Movement Disorders, Rasopathy


Clinical trials in Tourette syndrome and ataxia; genetics of Tourette syndrome; transcranial magnetic stimulation for neuromodulation and development of biomarkers of neurobehavioral symptoms for Tourette syndrome; ADHD; neurofibromatosis

Research Areas


Additional Languages

French, Spanish

Insurance Information

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Study protocol: A cross-sectional survey of clinicians to identify barriers to clinical practice guideline implementation in the assessment and treatment of persistent tic disorders. Martindale, JM; Sarva, H; Martino, D; Gilbert, DL; Ganos, C; Pringsheim, T; Black, K; Malaty, IA. PloS one. 2023; 18:e0288408.

Development of cancer surveillance guidelines in ataxia telangiectasia: A Delphi-based consensus survey of international experts. Neves, R; De Dios Perez, B; Panek, R; Jagani, S; Wilne, S; Bhatt, JM; Caputi, C; Cirillo, E; Coman, DJ; Dückers, G; et al. Cancer Medicine. 2023; 12:14663-14673.

Motor Function and Physiology in Youth With Neurofibromatosis Type 1. Doherty, AC; Huddleston, DA; Horn, PS; Ratner, N; Simpson, BN; Schorry, EK; Aschbacher-Smith, L; Prada, CE; Gilbert, DL. Pediatric Neurology. 2023; 143:34-43.

European Society for the Study of Tourette Syndrome 2022 criteria for clinical diagnosis of functional tic-like behaviours: International consensus from experts in tic disorders. Pringsheim, T; Ganos, C; Nilles, C; Cavanna, AE; Gilbert, DL; Greenberg, E; Hartmann, A; Hedderly, T; Heyman, I; Liang, H; et al. European Journal of Neurology. 2023; 30:902-910.

From urges to tics in children with Tourette syndrome: associations with supplementary motor area GABA and right motor cortex physiology. Larsh, TR; Huddleston, DA; Horn, PS; Wu, SW; Cecil, KM; Jackson, HS; Edden, RA E; Mostofsky, SH; Gilbert, DL. Cerebral Cortex. 2023; 33:3922-3933.

Adolescent Gender Differences in Tic- and Non-Tic-Related Impairments in Tourette Syndrome. Larsh, TR; Wu, SW; Huddleston, DA; White, S; Lipps, TD; Gilbert, DL. Journal of Child Neurology. 2023; 38:283-289.

The spectrum of functional tic-like behaviours: Data from an international registry. Martino, D; Hedderly, T; Murphy, T; Müller-Vahl, KR; Dale, RC; Gilbert, DL; Rizzo, R; Hartmann, A; Nagy, P; Anheim, M; et al. European Journal of Neurology. 2023; 30:334-343.

Spectrum of Pediatric to Early Adulthood POLR3A-Associated Movement Disorders. Zea Vera, A; Bruce, A; Larsh, TR; Jordan, Z; Brüggemann, N; Westenberger, A; Espay, AJ; Gilbert, DL; Wu, SW. Movement Disorders Clinical Practice. 2023; 10:316-322.

Ecopipam for Tourette Syndrome: A Randomized Trial. Gilbert, DL; Dubow, JS; Cunniff, TM; Wanaski, SP; Atkinson, SD; Mahableshwarkar, AR. Pediatrics. 2023; 151:e2022059574.

Neocortical localization and thalamocortical modulation of neuronal hyperexcitability contribute to Fragile X Syndrome. Pedapati, EV; Schmitt, LM; Ethridge, LE; Miyakoshi, M; Sweeney, JA; Liu, R; Smith, E; Shaffer, RC; Dominick, KC; Gilbert, DL; et al. Communications Biology. 2022; 5:442.

From the Blog

Ecopipam Reduces Tics in Tourette Syndrome in Early Tests
Mind Brain Behavior

Ecopipam Reduces Tics in Tourette Syndrome in Early Tests

Donald L. Gilbert, MD, MS3/30/2022

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