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About Teresa Lever, Ph.D., CCC-SLP

Dr. Teresa Lever is an assistant professor in the Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery at the University of Missouri, with adjunct appointments in Biomedical Sciences and Communication Sciences and Disorders. She also is a board-certified Speech Language Pathologist with over 20 years of clinical experience. She obtained her Ph.D. in Communication Sciences and Disorders in 2008 from East Carolina University (ECU) and subsequently completed a post-doctoral fellowship, also at ECU. Since joining the MU faculty in 2010, she has established a highly productive translational research laboratory in the College of Veterinary Medicine.

Dr. Lever uses the most advanced techniques and equipment to understand swallowing disorders in neurodegenerative diseases across multiple species, including humans, dogs, horses, pigs, and mice. Examples include amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s disease, and Batten disease. The current focus of her research is to develop diagnostic tests for swallowing that can be compared across species to facilitate translational research efforts. Her work is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Muscular Dystrophy Association, Mizzou Advantage, and the MU Interdisciplinary Center on Aging. Dr. Lever is currently collaborating with Dr. Plowman and her team in the NSSR basic science lab in a transgenic ALS mouse model of swallowing function.