Areas of Specialty



Phd (1991):
University of Melbourne
Australia, Victoria, Melbourne

BS (Hons), (1987):
Filders University
Australia, South Australia, Adelaide

BS (1986):
Adelade University
Australia, South Australia, Adelaide

Achievements & Awards

  • Faculty Teaching Excellence Award - 2002, 2010, 2014, 2019
  • Erwin W. Lewis Teaching Award, UNM SOM - 2016, 2017, 2018
  • Team Science Award, UNM Health Sciences Center - 2016
  • Khatali Teaching Award, UNM SOM - 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010
  • William G. Dail Endowed Professorship for Excellence in Teaching - 2011-2014
  • A. Earl Walker Award for Neuroscience Research at UNM - 2010
  • Dean’s Award of Distinction, UNM SOM - 2003
  • Smith Klein & French Neuroscience Prize, Flinders University of South Australia - 1988

Key Publications

  • C.W. Shuttleworth, R.D. Andrew, Y. Akbari, C. Ayata, et al., Which Spreading Depolarizations are Deleterious to Brain Tissue?  Neurocritical Care 32 (2020) 317-322.
  • A.P. Carlson, M. Abbas, R.L. Alunday, F. Qeadan, C.W. Shuttleworth.  Spreading depolarization in acute brain injury inhibited by ketamine: a prospective, randomized, multiple crossover trial.  J Neurosurgery.  130 (2019) 1513-1519.
  • K.M. Reinhart & C.W. Shuttleworth.  Ketamine reduces deleterious consequences of spreading depolarizations.  Experimental Neurology 305 (2018) 121-128.
  • J.A. Hartings, C.W. Shuttleworth, S.A. Kirov, C. Ayata, et al., The continuum of spreading depolarizations in acute cortical lesion development: Examining Leão's legacy.  J Cereb Blood Flow Metab.  37 (2017) 1571-1594
  • B.E. Lindquist & C.W. Shuttleworth.  Evidence that adenosine contributes to Leao’s spreading depression in vivo.  J Cereb Blood Flow Metab.  37 (2017) 1656-1669
  • I. Aiba & C.W. Shuttleworth.  Sustained NMDA receptor activation by spreading depolarizations can initiate excitotoxic injury in metabolically compromised neurons.  J. Physiol. 590 (2012) 5877-5893.


He, Him


  • English


Our laboratory is currently focused almost entirely on spreading depolarization (SD) events, which are profound depolarizations of neurons and glia that propagate slowly throughout the brain. A colloquial term for these events is "Brain Tsunamis" (click here to see a short introductory video about brain tsunamis).  There has been a resurgence in interest in SD, as recent clinical recordings have implicated SDs as key contributors to progression of acute brain injuries (including stroke and traumatic brain injury).   The long-term goal of our lab is to help develop SD interventions that can be applied at late time points, and which ultimately will be translatable to the clinic. We use brain slices and animal models to identify 1) fundamental mechanisms that underlie damaging effects of SD, 2) approaches to support compromised tissues to recover from repeated SD episodes and 3) potential beneficial effects of SD that might be important for functional recovery of injured brain.  Our lab collaborates closely with clinical colleagues in the departments of Neurosurgery, Psychiatry and Neurology to explore roles of SD in a range of disorders, and potential treatments targeting SD.

Courses Taught

Undergraduate Medical Education:

  • Neurosciences Block
  • GI and Nutrition Block

Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program:

  • Neurophysiology (Biomed 531)
  • Functional Neuroanatomy (Biomed 533)