Amanda Smith received her undergraduate training in chemistry at Agnes Scott College in Atlanta, GA and did her graduate training in analytical chemistry/neurochemistry at Emory University in Atlanta, GA with Dr. Joseph Justice. She then received postdoctoral training in the laboratories of Drs. Friebert Weiss and George Koob at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, CA, where she began investigating the sensitivity of reaction time as a preclinical screen for Parkinson's disease. She joined the faculty of the University of Pittsburgh in the Department of Neurology in 1999 as a research assistant professor, where she continued her studies of Parkinson's disease, focusing now on potential neuroprotective therapies (e.g., gene therapy, exercise) and the underlying mechanism involved in their action. She is further interested in the dual role that stress may play as a contributor to the etiology of Parkinson's disease.