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Stroke & Cerebrovascular Center

Our Team


Boston Medical Center
72 E. Concord St., C-3
Boston, MA 02118


Aleksandra Pikula, MD

Attending Physician, Boston Medical Center
Assistant Professor of Neurology, Boston University School of Medicine

CV Highlights

CV Highlights

Medical School
University of Belgrade, Yugoslavia

Board Certification
Vascular Neurology, Neurology, Medicine

Internal Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Queens Hospital Center, New York

Neurology, Boston Medical Center, Boston

Clinical Fellowship
Vascular Neurology, Boston University School of Medicine and Boston Medical Center

Clinical Research Fellowship
Advanced Vascular Neurology/Neuroepidemiology
Boston University Medical Center / Framingham Heart Study

Special Interests
Cerebrovascular Disease (stroke prevention and stroke in young population), Neuropeidemiology (novel biomarkers/stroke risk factors, and genetics of stroke), Neuroimaging

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Dr. Aleksandra Pikula is Assistant Professor of Neurology at Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) and Clinical Neurologist with expertise in Vascular Neurology at Boston Medical Center (BMC) and at the Framingham Heart Study (FHS).

After receiving a medical degree from the School of Medicine at the University of Belgrade in Yugoslavia, Dr. Pikula completed a two-year residency in general medicine followed by a research fellow position at the Sunnybrook Health Science Center in Toronto, Canada. Subsequently, she completed a year of internship in medicine at the QHC- Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, residency in neurology at BMC and two-year combined clinical and research fellowship training in vascular neurology at BMC and BUSM and at the Framingham Heart Study. During this time she has also started a program towards a Masters Degree at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Since 2008, Dr. Pikula is a Diplomat of the American Board of Neurology and Psychiatry, and she is board-certified in Neurology and Vascular Neurology.

Dr. Pikula's clinical interests are focused on comprehensive evaluation and management of a variety of cerebrovascular disease, with particular interest in stroke in young population. A major focus of her research interest is stroke prevention, genetics of stroke and discovery of novel biomarkers and risk factors for clinical and subclinical vascular brain disease. As an investigator, Dr. Pikula is actively involved in multiple projects at the Framingham Heart Study, and in several multicenter NIH-sponsored clinical studies at BMC. She has presented her research at national and international meetings, authored several peer-reviewed publications and is a reviewer for recognized journals and professional web-forums.

In 2011, Dr. Pikula was the recipient of the American Heart Association National Clinical Research Program Award to study the Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor: Serum levels and Genetic Variation in Stroke and Subclinical Vascular Brain Injury

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Shoamanesh A, Masoud H, Furey K, Duerfeldt K, Lau H, Romero JR, Pikula A, Teal P, Nguyen TN, Kase CS, Babikian VL. Larger a1/m1 diameter ratio predicts embolic anterior cerebral artery territorial stroke. Stroke 2014;45(9):2798-800

Weinstein G, Beiser AS, Choi SH, Preis SR, Chen TC, Vorgas D, Au R, Pikula A, Wolf PA, Destefano AL, Vasan RS, Seshadri S. Serum Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor and the Risk for Dementia: The Framingham Heart Study. JAMA Neurol. 2013 Nov 25.

Pikula A, Beiser AS, Chen TC, Preis SR, Vorgias D, Decarli C, Au R, Kelly-Hayes M, Kase CS, Wolf PA, Vasan RS, Seshadri S. Serum Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor and Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Levels Are Associated With Risk of Stroke and Vascular Brain Injury: Framingham Study.
Stroke 2013. Aug 8 (ahead of print)

Romero JR, Mercado M, Beiser AS, Pikula A, Seshadri S, Kelly-Hayes M, Wolf PA, Kase CS. Transient global amnesia and neurological events: the framingham heart study. Front Neurol 2013;4:47.

Shoamanesh A, Catanese L, Sakai O, Pikula A, Kase CS. Diffusion-Weighted imaging hyperintensities in intracerebral hemorrhage: Microinfarcts or microbleeds? Ann Neurol. 2013 Jan 29.

Romero JR, Preis SR, Beiser AS, DeCarli C, Lee DY, Viswanathan A, Benjamin EJ, Fontes J, Au R, Pikula A, Wang J, Kase CS, Wolf PA, Irrizary MC, Seshadri S.
Lipoprotein Phospholipase A2 and Cerebral Microbleeds in the Framingham Heart Study. Stroke September 2012

Enhancing Neuro Imaging Genetics through Meta-Analysis (ENIGMA) Consortium, Bis JC, Decarli C, Smith AV, van der Lijn F, Crivello F, Fornage M, Debette S, Shulman JM, Schmidt H, Srikanth V, Schuur M, Yu L, Choi SH, Sigurdsson S, Verhaaren BF, Destefano AL, Lambert JC, Jack CR Jr, Struchalin M, Stankovich J, Ibrahim-Verbaas CA, Fleischman D, Zijdenbos A, den Heijer T, Mazoyer B, Coker LH, Enzinger C, Danoy P, Amin N, Arfanakis K, van Buchem MA, de Bruijn RF, Beiser A, Dufouil C, Huang J, Cavalieri M, Thomson R, Niessen WJ, Chibnik LB, Gislason GK, Hofman A, Pikula A, Amouyel P, Freeman KB, Phan TG, Oostra BA, Stein JL, Medland SE, Vasquez AA, Hibar DP, Wright MJ, Franke B, Martin NG, Thompson PM; the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology (CHARGE) Consortium, Nalls MA, Uitterlinden AG, Au R, Elbaz A, Beare RJ, van Swieten JC, Lopez OL, Harris TB, Chouraki V, Breteler MM, De Jager PL, Becker JT, Vernooij MW, Knopman D, Fazekas F, Wolf PA, van der Lugt A, Gudnason V, Longstreth WT Jr, Brown MA,
Bennett DA, van Duijn CM, Mosley TH, Schmidt R, Tzourio C, Launer LJ, Ikram MA, Seshadri S. Common variants at 12q14 and 12q24 are associated with hippocampal volume. Nat Genet. 2012;44(5):545-551. doi: 10.1038/ng.2237. 
Pikula A, Beiser AS, Decarli C, Himali JJ, Debette S, Au R, Selhub J, Toffler  GH, Wang TJ, Meigs JB, Kelly-Hayes M, Kase CS, Wolf PA, Vasan RS, Seshadri S. Multiple biomarkers and risk of clinical and subclinical vascular brain injury: the framingham offspring study. Circulation. 2012;125(17):2100-7. Epub 2012 Mar 28.

Tan ZS, Harris WS, Beiser AS, Au R, Himali JJ, Debette S, Pikula A, Decarli C, Wolf PA, Vasan RS, Robins SJ, Seshadri S. Red blood cell ?-3 fatty acid levels and markers of accelerated brain aging. Neurology 2012;78(9):658-64.

Nguyen TN, Babikian VL, Romero JR, Pikula A, Kase CS, Jovin TG, Norbash AM. Intra-arterial treatment methods in acute stroke therapy. Frontiers in Endovascular and Interventional Neurology 2011;2:1-10.

Petrea RE, Koyfman F, Pikula A, Romero JR, Viereck J, Babikian VL, Kase CS, Nguyen TN. Acute Stroke, Catheter Related Venous Thrombosis, and Paradoxical Cerebral Embolism: Report of Two Cases. J Neuroimaging 2011;31.

Pikula A, Stefanidou M, Romero JR, Kase CS. Pure Motor Upper Limb Weakness and Infarction in the Precentral Gyrus: The Mechanism of Stroke. JIVN 2010 (in press).

Seshadri S, Beiser A, Pikula A, Himali JJ, Kelly-Hayes M, Debette S, DeStefano AL, Romero JR, Kase CS, Wolf PA. Parental occurrence of stroke and risk of stroke in their children: the Framingham study. Circulation 2010;121(11):1304-12.

Debette S, Wolf PA, Beiser A, Au R, Himali JJ, Pikula A, Auerbach S, Decarli C, Seshadri S. Association of parental dementia with cognitive and brain MRI measures in middle-aged adults. Neurology 2009;73(24):2071-8.

Romero JR,  Pikula A, Nguyen TN,  Nien YL,  Norbash A, Babikian VL. Cerebral Collateral Circulation in Carotid Artery Disease. Current Cardiology Reviews 2009;5(4);279-288.

Pikula A, Boger RH, Beiser A, Maas R, DeCarli C, Schwedhelm E, Du Y, Schulze F, Au R, Kelly-Hayes M, Kase CS, Vasan RS, Wolf PA, Seshadri S. Plasma Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) Levels are Associated with Silent Cerebral Infarcts: The Framingham Study. Stroke 2009;40(9):2959-64.

Romero JR, Pikula A. Carotid Artery Disease: Current Concepts on Endothelial Dysfunction and Matrix Remodeling. Current Drug Therapy 2009;4(3):202-213.

Pikula A, Almodovar JS, Nguyen T. Cerebral Arteriovenous Malformation in Hereditary Hemorrhagic Teleangiectasia. Neurology 2009;72(10):e45.

Romero JR, Morris J, Pikula A. Stroke prevention: modifying risk factors. Therapeutic Advances in Cardiovascular Disease 2008;2: 287-303.

Selected Proceedings of Meetings

Original Research (Oral Platform): “Multiple Biomarkers and Risk of Clinical and Subclinical Vascular Brain Injury: The Framingham Offspring Study” Pikula A, Beiser AS, Himali JJ, Debette S, DeCarli C, Au R, Selhub J, Tofler GH, Wang TJ, Kelly-Hayes M, Kase CS, Benjamin EJ, Vasan RS, Wolf PA, Seshadri S. The 2010 International Stroke Conference, San Antonio, TX

Original Research (Oral Platform): “Physical Activity and Risk of Stroke: The Framingham Study.” Pikula A, Wolf PA, Beiser AS, Himali JJ, Kelly-Hayes M, Kase CS, Vasan RS, Seshadri S. The 2010 AAN Meeting, Toronto. (Selected for the Scientific Program Highlights Plenary Session & for the Highlights in the field of Neuroepidemiology).

Original research (Oral Platform): “Physical Activity and the Risk of Dementia: The Framingham Study.” Tan ZS, Beiser AS, Au R, Kelly-Hayes M, Vasan RS, Auerbach S,  Murabito J, Pikula A, Wolf PA, Seshadri S. The 2010 International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease (ICAD), Honolulu, Hawaii

Case Series (Poster): "Pure Motor Upper Limb Weakness and Infarction in the Precentral Gyrus: Mechanism of Stroke" Stefanidou M, Pikula A, Karakis I, Romero JR, Kase CS. The 2009 AAN Meeting, Seattle.

Original Research (Oral Platform): "Plasma Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) Levels are Associated with Silent Cerebral Infarcts: The Framingham Study." Pikula A, Boger RH, Beiser A, Maas R, DeCarli C, Schwedhelm E, Du Y, Schulze F, Au R, Kelly-Hayes M, Kase CS, Vasan RS, Wolf PA, Seshadri S. The 2008 AAN Meeting, Chicago. (Selected for the Scientific Program Highlights Plenary Session & the Highlights in the Stroke/Critical Care Scientific Session)


Call: 617.638.8456
Fax: 617.638.8465
Email: stroke@bmc.org

Boston Medical Center
Department of Neurology
Shapiro Center
7th Floor, Suite 7B
725 Albany Street
Boston, MA 02118

For Research Information

Contact Helena Lau,
Call: 617.414.1171
Fax: 617.638.5354
stroke@bmc.org or

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