Ataxia Center of Excellence

From visits with your neurologist to support groups and educational events to appointments with rehab specialists, the National Ataxia Foundation Ataxia Center of Excellence at the Fixel Institute meets all your needs in one location.

Care In One LOcation

Ataxia can be a confusing and complicated disease, and we’re here to help.

When you visit the National Ataxia Foundation (NAF) Ataxia Center of Excellence at the Fixel Institute, your care is our top priority. You are at the center of everything we do.

From the neurologist to the rehab specialists, our team will work hand in hand to bring you the best care and research opportunities.

All care, research and patient resources take place at the Norman Fixel Institute in Gainesville, Florida.

Young girl in clinic with care team

Patient Care

Ataxia Clinic

Patient care takes place at our clinical building, UF Health Neuromedicine – Fixel Institute, in Gainesville, Florida. The state of the art facility provides a central location for all your care and treatment needs including appointments, therapies, support groups and more.

Dr. Matthew Burns assessing a patient in the Parkinson's, Dystonia and Movement Disorders clinic

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy assesses your need for adaptive equipment and recommends devices to improve independence and quality of life. Through use of different therapeutic approaches, OT focuses on activities of daily living that are most important to you.

Patient in rehab center

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy assesses your need for adaptive devices to improve independence and safety with walking and transfers. Different therapeutic approaches are utilized to promote your ability to move within your environment and the community.

Dr. Joshua Cooper assisting a patient during a physical therapy appointment

Speech Therapy

Speech therapy assesses your need for strategies that will improve your ability to communicating, chewing and swallowing.  Therapeutic techniques are utilized to promote improved communication and safety with eating and swallowing.

Young girl with speech therapist

Genetic Testing

The goal of genetic testing is to determine if your ataxia has a genetic cause. Not all types of ataxia are genetic. Knowing if your ataxia has a genetic cause can help to clarify a diagnosis, guide clinical care, and determine eligibility for treatments and research.

Family history tree in a genetic counseling session.

Your CarE Team

Matthew R Burns



Matthew R Burns MD, PhD

Assistant Professor Of Neurology

Sub Subramony



Sub Subramony M.D.


Adolfo Ramirez-Zamora



Adolfo Ramirez-Zamora MD

Professor Of Neurology & Division Chief Movement Disorders

Lauren Fanty



Lauren Fanty MD, MPH

Assistant Professor

Lee Kugelmann



Lee Kugelmann

Genetic Counselor

Eshe J John

Eshe J John

RN Spec – ACU

News & Resources

Research & Clinic TrialS

At the NAF Ataxia Center of Excellence at the Fixel Institute, we work to provide the most comprehensive and high impact clinical trial options for our patients living with ataxia while aggressively moving the field of ataxia towards meaningful treatments and potential cures.

We offer ongoing natural history, imaging, biomarker, and therapeutic trials in pediatric and adult forms of ataxia with extensive clinical trial expertise and friendly and responsive clinical trial coordinators and support staff available to make the experience easy and accessible for you.

In addition to clinical trials, our team is dedicated to understanding the cellular and network level of neurological disorders like ataxia to better understand disorders and provide research informed care. There are several labs that conduct research on topics relevant to the ataxias

Dr. Burns’s lab focuses on the interaction between ageing and neurodegenerative disease with a focus on network dysfunction, and non-invasive neuromodulatory therapies for cognitive and affective dysfunction. Additional research labs are located in the Center for Neurogenetics under the direction of Dr. Laura Ranum and the Powell Gene Therapy Center under the direction of Dr. Barry Byrne. Collaborative efforts are also available with many other labs at the McKnight Brain Institute and other centers around the campus.

Researcher in the lab

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