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Zachary Simmons, M.D.Zachary Simmons, M.D.

Professor of Neurology
Director, Neuromuscular Program and ALS Center


  • Neurology

Contact Information:

  • Office Location: 30 Hope Drive

Biographical Information:

After graduating from Dartmouth College and from The University of Florida College of Medicine, Dr. Simmons received his training in Neurology at the University of Iowa, and then received 2 additional years of subspecialty training in neuromuscular disorders and EMG at the University of Michigan. He has been at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center since 1992, and specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of patients with ALS and other neuromuscular disorders.


  • M.D., University of Florida College of Medicine, 1982
  • Residency, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
  • Fellowship, University of Michigan Hospitals

Academic Interests:

My primary research interests are in neuromuscular diseases, particularly amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, Lou Gehrig’s Disease).  We have active clinical and basic science research programs. For more information about each of these trials, please visit www.pennstatehershey.org/als:

Clinical Research in ALS

  • An Evidence Based Practice Approach to Improve End of Life Care in ALS
  • Advance Care Planning in ALS
  • Quality of Life in Patients With ALS ALS - Specific Quality of Life (ALSSQOL) Questionnaire
  • Changes in Thinking in ALS 
  • Development of Evidence-Based Practice Guidelines for Managing Cognitive and Behavioral Change in ALS
  • Caring for the Caregiver: Use of an Evidence Based Practice Model 

 Clinical Trials in ALS 

  • Ceftriaxone in ALS
  • KNS-760704
  • Improving strength in ALS

Basic Science Research in ALS

This work is being carried out in the laboratory of Dr. James Connor, Professor and Vice Chair for Research, Department of Neurosurgery.  These research efforts are the result of close collaboration between Dr. Connor and Dr. Simmons, and are supported by a variety of sources.

  • The Role of Iron in ALS
  • Spinal Fluid as a Biomarker in ALS 
  • Drug Delivery

Patient Resources  

  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
    The ALS Association, Greater Philadelphia Chapter
    Phone: 215-643-5434 or 1-877-GEHRIG-1 (1-877-434-7441)

    The ALS Association, National Office
    Phone: (818) 880-9007

  • Muscular Dystrophies
    The Muscular Dystrophy Association
    Phone 717-540-4316


  • Myasthenia Gravis
    Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America
    651-917-6256 or 800-541-5454

  • Neuropathies
    The Neuropathy Association

    Washington University Neuromuscular Disease Center

  • Polymyositis, Dematomyositis, and Inclusion Body Myositis
    The Myositis Association 


The ALS Association Greater Philadelphia Chapter
321 Norristown Road - Suite 260, Ambler, PA 19002

The ALS Association is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and donations are tax deductible to the full extent of the law.