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Timothy A. Benke, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Neurology and Pharmacology


   Phone: 720-777-1234 (TBD)
   E-mail: (TBD)

Section of Child Neurology, Department of Pediatrics
Children's Hospital Colorado

Pediatrics, Psychiatry, Neurology, Child Neurology

Timothy A. Benke, MD, PhD, earned his medical and doctoral degrees from Baylor College of Medicine in Texas, in 1995 and 1994, respectively. He completed a year of postdoctoral research training at the University of Bristol, UK (1996), and his Pediatric Residency (1998) and Child Neurology Residency (2001) at Baylor/Texas Children’s Hospital. From 2001 to 2002 Dr. Benke served as an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Baylor and as Clinical Director of the Child Neurology Clinic at Ben Taub General Hospital in Houston.

Dr. Benke joined the faculty of Children's Hospital Colorado and the Departments of Pediatrics, Neurology, and Pharmacology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in 2002.

Dr. Benke's lab studies the function of synapses, the primary means of communication between neurons in the brain. Results are likely to help prevent the effects of early-life seizures, which can include learning impairment and epilepsy, and will also advance the understanding of the synaptic mechanisms underlying mental retardation.

Dr. Benke has received many awards and honors throughout his career, including a Young Investigator Award from the Texas Neurological Society. He is the recipient of a Clinical Scientist Development Award from the U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Dr. Benke is a peer reviewer for several neurology journals and is widely published in both pediatrics and neurology journals and books. He is a member of the American Association of Pediatrics, the Child Neurology Society, the American Academy of Neurology, and the Society for Neuroscience. He also has served as a member of the University of Colorado Health Sciences Committee on Research Ethics.

Publications in PubMed

  • Moe PG, Benke TA, Bernard TJ, Levisohn P. Neurologic and muscular disorders. In: Hay WW Jr, Levin MJ, Sondheimer JM, Deterding RR, editors. Current pediatric diagnosis and treatment. 19th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2009.
  • Cornejo BJ, Mesches MH, Benke TA. A single early-life seizure impairs short-term memory but does not alter spatial learning, recognition memory, or anxiety. Epilepsy Behav. 2008 Nov;13(4):585-92. [PMID: 18678283]
  • Stafstrom CE, Benke TA. Early-life seizures and cognitive impairment: a spiny problem? Epilepsy Curr. 2008 Jan-Feb;8(1):27-8. [PMID: 18265887]
  • Cornejo BJ, Mesches MH, Coultrap S, Browning MD, Benke TA. A single episode of neonatal seizures permanently alters glutamatergic synapses. Ann Neurol. 2007 May;61(5):411-26. [PMID: 17323345]
  • Jones J, Stubblefield EA, Benke TA, Staley KJ. Desynchronization of glutamate release prolongs synchronous CA3 network activity. J Neurophysiol. 2007 May;97(5):3812-8. [PMID: 17344368]
  • Hall DA, Parsons J, Benke T. Paroxysmal nonkinesigenic dystonia and celiac disease. Mov Disord. 2007 Apr;22(5):708-10. [PMID: 17377923]
  • Moe PG, Benke TA, Bernard TJ. Neurologic and muscular disorders. In: Hay WW Jr, Levin MJ, Sondheimer JM, Deterding RR, editors. Current pediatric diagnosis and treatment. 18th ed. New York: McGraw Hill; 2007.
  • Dzhala VI, Talos DM, Sdrulla DA, Brumback AC, Mathews GC, Benke TA, Delpire E, Jensen FE, Staley KJ. NKCC1 transporter facilitates seizures in the developing brain. Nat Med. 2005 Nov;11(11):1205-13. [PMID: 16227993]
  • Schnee ME, Lawton DM, Furness DN, Benke TA, Ricci AJ. Auditory hair cell-afferent fiber synapses are specialized to operate at their best frequencies. Neuron. 2005 Jul 21;47(2):243-54. [PMID: 16039566]
  • Bannister NJ, Benke TA, Mellor J, Scott H, Gurdal E, Crabtree JW, Isaac JT. Developmental changes in AMPA and kainate receptor-mediated quantal transmission at thalamocortical synapses in the barrel cortex. J Neurosci. 2005 May 25;25(21):5259-71. [PMID: 15917466]
  • Moe PG, Benke TA. Neurologic and neuromuscular disorders. In: Hay WW Jr., Hayward AR, Levin ML, Sondheimer JM, Deterding RR, editors. Current pediatric diagnosis and treatment. 17th ed. New York: McGraw Hill; 2005.
  • Rennie KJ, Streeter MA, Benke TA, Moritz AT. Modeling channel properties in vestibular calyx terminals. Biomed Sci Instrum. 2005;41:358-63. [PMID: 15850132]