Our Surgical Program Team


Robert Knowlton, MD, MSPHRobert Knowlton, MD
Professor, Clinical Neurology
Medical Director, UCSF Seizure Disorders Surgery Program
Full UCSF Profile

Dr. Knowlton is Professor, Clinical Neurology at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), where he serves as Medical Director of the UCSF Seizure Disorders Surgical Program. Dr. Knowlton graduated from Tulane University with a B.S. in biological chemistry, received his M.D. from Louisiana State University School of Medicine New Orleans, and completed his neurology residency at the University of California Los Angeles, and epilepsy and neurophysiology fellowship at the UCSF. He received his MSPH degree at the University of Alabama School Birmingham of Public Health.

Dr. Knowlton’s career is dedicated to the fields of epilepsy and human brain mapping. His research focuses on neuroimaging and clinical decision-making in the surgical treatment of seizure disorders and brain tumors. Combining imaging-based localization tools with epilepsy and brain tumor localization provides remarkably potent and rewarding ways to learn how the brain works. A large problem with the rapid discovery and creation of novel imaging technologies has been the assumption of clinical value and adoption into practice as diagnostic tools without adequate evidence of utility. As a clinician-scientist with a background in integrating functional and structural imaging his work studies the transition of brain imaging advances to clinical applications by employing in vivo validation methods (intracranial measures), and then analysis as to how and whether tests should impact care of patients. The primary goal is to identify those advances in imaging and neurophysiology-based technologies that impact clinical decision-making and effect outcomes.


Edward Chang, MDEdward Chang, MD
Associate Professor in Residence
Chief of Epilepsy Surgery, UCSF Epilepsy Center
Full UCSF Profile

Dr. Edward Chang is a neurosurgeon with expertise in treating intractable epilepsy, pain, movement disorders and brain tumors in adults. He specializes in advanced brain mapping methods, including awake craniotomy for speech and motor mapping, to safely perform surgery in the brain. Dr. Chang directs a clinical research program that is dedicated to improving long-term outcomes and safety of surgical treatments for patients with medically refractory epilepsy.

In his laboratory research, he studies innovative technologies to preserve and restore speech, movement and cognition. He is faculty in the Center for Integrative Neuroscience at Mission Bay. He co-directs the Center for Neural Engineering at UC Berkeley and UCSF, which brings together engineering, neuroscience, neurology and neurosurgery to develop devices to restore function for patients with neurological disabilities such as paralysis and speech disorders. He earned a medical degree and completed neurosurgery residency training at UCSF. He has received awards from the American Epilepsy Society, Klingenstein Foundation, and National Institutes of Health for his work on epilepsy neurosurgery.

Amherst College, BA, 1997
UCSF School of Medicine, MD, 2004

UCSF Medical Center, Neurosurgery, 2010

Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Merzenich Laboratory, 2002
University of California, Berkeley, Knight Laboratory, 2008

Additional Profile

Read about Dr. Chang’s clinical research

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Mariann WardMariann Ward, NP
Mariann has been with the epilepsy team for over 15 years. She started as the epilepsy nurse specialist and currently works as nurse practioner with Dr. Barbaro. Mariann assists all patients that have undergone surgical intervention by Dr. Barbaro.