Vesna Jevtovic-Todorovic, MD, PhD, MBA

Scientific Advisory Board, Member
Vesna Jevtovic-Todorovic, MD, PhD, MBA

Vesna Jevtovic-Todorovic, MD, PhD, MBA

University of Colorado School of Medicine

Scientific Profile

Areas of Specialty: Dr. Jevtovic-Todorovic specializes in anesthesiology and neuroscience. She holds board certifications in the State of Missouri (1992) and the Commonwealth of Virginia (2001), and is certified by the American Board of Anesthesiology as a Diplomat in Anesthesiology. Dr. Jevtovic-Todorovic has held teaching positions and hospital appointments for the past two decades.

Research Activities: Dr. Jevtovic-Todorovic’s primary research interests include developmental neurotoxicity and chronic pain pathophysiology and treatment. Most recently, her research has been focused on mechanisms by which anesthetic drugs interact with neurotransmitter systems in the central nervous system (CNS) to produce both pharmacological and toxicological effects. Her initial studies relating to the neurotoxicity of anesthetics in the developing brain influenced further investigations into anesthetic-induced neurotoxicity. Dr. Jevtovic-Todorovic is primarily interested in identifying and classifying the neurotoxic properties of key inhaled and intravenous anesthetics with an emphasis on the NMDA antagonist and GABA agonist class of general anesthetics. Dr. Jevtovic-Todorovic’s experience and expertise greatly contribute to the SmartTots Scientific Advisory Board.

Recent Research Funding

  • Anesthesia-induced developmental neurodegeneration
    R01 Grant, NIH/National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (2011-2014)
    Principal Investigator
  • Anesthesia-induced developmental neuroapoptosis
    Recovery Act Grant, NIH/National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (2009-2011)
    Principal Investigator
  • The role of neurotrophins in anesthesia-induced developmental neuro-apoptosis
    Fogarty International Research Award, Fogarty Foundation/NIH (2006-2010)
    Principal Investigator
  • Validation of voltage-dependent T-channel blockers in treatment of neuropathic pain
    R21 Grant, NIH/National Institute of Drug Abuse (2010-2012)
    Principal Investigator
  • Use of rho kinase for treatment of peripheral diabetic neuropathy
    LaunchPad Grant, University of Virginia School of Medicine (2010-2011)
    Principal Investigator
  • The role of T-type calcium channels in painful diabetic neuropathy
    American Diabetes Association (2010-2013)
  • Anesthetic action: channel substrates & molecular mechanisms
    R01 Grant, NIH/National Institute of General Medical Sciences (2006-2010)


Scientific Advisory Board, Member

University of Colorado School of Medicine

Professor and Chair
Department of Anesthesiology


University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Yugoslavia – MD (1985)
University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois – PhD (1990)
University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia – MBA (2010)


Washington University School of Medicine – Anesthesiology Residency

Professional Affiliations

  • American Society of Anesthesiologists (1992 –present)
  • Missouri Society of Anesthesiologists (1992-present)
  • Society for Neuroscience (1995-present)
  • Association of University Anesthesiologists (2000-present)
  • Virginia Society of Anesthesiology (2001-present)
  • Neurotoxicity Research Society (2003-present)
  • Italian Society of Intensive Care Medicine, Honorary Member (2003-present)

Recent Achievements

  • Elected Top Doctor in Charlottesville, VA by the International Association of Anesthesiologists (published in The Leading Physicians of the World) (2010-present)
  • The Cutting Edge Basic Research Award (CEBRA) from NIH (2010-2012)
  • Elected member of the International Association of Anesthesiologists (2010)
  • Invited member, National Association of Professional Women (2009-present)
  • Darden MBA Executives Management Development Award, University of Virginia, Darden Graduate School of Business (2008-2010)
  • Elected Representative, National Mid-Career Women Faculty Development Seminar (2007) American Medical Association, Scottsdale, Arizona
  • Member, Board of Directors, International Society of Anaesthetic Pharmacology (2007-present)
  • Member of the Faculty 1000 Medicine (2007-present)
  • Member, “America’s Top Anesthesiologists,” Guide to America’s Top Anesthesiologists, Consumers’ Research Council of America (2006-present)
  • Member, “2000 Outstanding Intellectuals of the 21st Century” (2005-present), International Biographical Centre, Cambridge, England
  • Established Investigator Award, American Heart Association, National Center Research (2004-2008)
  • Program Elected Honorary Member, Italian Society of Intensive Care Medicine (2003)
  • Awardee of the Research Career Development Award (K-08) from NIH/NIDA (1999-2004)
  • Awardee of the FAER/Abbott New Investigator Award, Foundation for Anesthesia Education and Research, Affiliate of American Society of Anesthesiologists (1998-2000)
  • Valedictorian Anniversary Medal, University of Belgrade College of Medicine (1985)
  • Annual Award of the City of Belgrade, Yugoslavia (1985)
  • Annual Award of the University of Belgrade, Yugoslavia (1985)

Selected Publications

Lunardi N, Ori C, Erisir A, Jevtovic-Todorovic V. General anesthesia causes long-lasting disturbances in the ultrastructural properties of developing synapses in young rats. Neurotoxicology Research 2010;17:179-88.

Messinger RB, Naik AK, Jagodic MM, Nelson MT, Lee WY, Choe WJ, Orestes P, Latham JR, Todorovic SM, Jevtovic-Todorovic V. In vivo silencing of the Ca(V)3.2 T-type calcium channels in sensory neurons alleviates hyperalgesia in rats with streptozocin-induced diabetic neuropathy. Pain 2009;145:184-95.

Latham JR, Pathirathna S, Jagodic MM, Levin ME, Nelson MT, Lee WY, Krishnan K, Covey DF, Todorovic SM, Jevtovic-Todorovic V. Selective T-type calcium channel blockade alleviates hyperalgesia of morbid-obesity-induced diabetic neuropathy in ob/ob mice. Diabetes 2009;58:2656-65.

Rizzi S, Carter LB, Ori C, Jevtovic-Todorovic V. Clinical anesthesia causes permanent damage to the fetal guinea pig brain. Brain Pathology 2008;18(2):198-210.

Yon, J-H, Carter LB, Reiter RJ, Jevtovic-Todorovic V. Melatonin reduces the severity of anesthesia-induced apoptotic neurodegeneration in the developing rat brain. Neurobiology of Disease 2006;21(3):522-30.

Lu, LX, Yon J-H, Carter LB, Jevtovic-Todorovic, V. General anesthesia activates BDNF-dependent neuroapoptosis in the developing rat brain. Apoptosis 2006;11(9):1603-15.

Jevtovic-Todorovic V, Hartman RE, Izumi Y, Benshoff ND, Dikranian K, Zorumski CS, Olney JW, Wozniak DW. Early exposure to common anesthetic agents causes widespread neurodegeneration in the developing rat brain and persistent learning deficits. J Neuroscience 2003;23(3):876-882.

Jevtovic-Todorovic V, Todorovic SM, Mennerick S, Powell S, Dikranian K, Benshoff N, Zorumski CF, Olney JW. Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) is an NMDA antagonist, sneuroprotectant and neurotoxin. Nature Medicine 1998;4:460-463.

Jevtovic-Todorovic V, Kirby CO, Olney JW. Isoflurane and propofol block neurotoxicity caused by MK-801 in the rat posterior cingulate/retrosplenial cortex. J Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism 1997;17:168-174.

Q & A

When and why did you become interested in your field?
I became interested in this area of concentration in 1995 because the issues concerning neurotoxicity of clinically used anesthetics are important to the safety of our practice.

What goals would you like to see SmartTots accomplish?
I would like to see SmartTots assess the neurotoxic potential of commonly used anesthetics in the pediatric population, and to devise protective strategies to enable safe use of anesthetics.

How can the public support SmartTots?
The public can support SmartTots through general awareness and donations, which will help fund the research needed to ensure the safe use of anesthetics in children.