A Short Biography of F. W. L. Kerr, M.D.

  • Tony L. Yaksh


Frederick W. L. Kerr, after 25 years of contributing to our understanding of brain function, died on the 28th of August 1983. He was born on the 25th of March 1923 to English parents in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He received his M.D. degree from the University of Buenos Aires in 1949. He came to the United States in 1952 to begin his residency in Neurosurgery at Barnes Hospital in St. Louis under Dr. Henry Schwartz. He became an American citizen in 1961. From 1956 to 1958, after completing his residency training, he became an Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery at the State University of New York at Syracuse and was acting Chief of Neurological Surgery at the Veterans Administration Hospital there. He then came to Mayo, in his own words, to “do neurosurgery and to organize and direct a research laboratory of neurological surgery.” He indeed did both. He was actually practicing neurosurgery until 1976 and was actively involved in research up to the year before his death.


Trigeminal Nerve Trigeminal Neuralgia Trigeminal Ganglion Trigeminal Ganglion Neurone Dorsal Motor Nucleus 


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Chronological Citation List of Dr. Frederick W. L. Kerr

  1. Kerr, F. W. L., Schwartz, H. G., and Seaman, W. B. Experimental effects of radioactive colloidal gold in the subarachnoid space, clinical application in treating brain tumors. Arch. Surg. 69:694–706, 1954.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Kerr, F. W. L., and O’leary, J. L. The thalamic source of cortical recruiting in the rodent. Electroencephalogr. Clin. Neurophysiol. 9:461–476, 1957.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  4. O’leary, J. L., Kerr, F. W. L., and Goldring, S. The relation between spinoreticular and ascending cephalic systems, in: Reticular Formation of the Brain (H. H. Jasper, L. D. Proctor, and R. S. Knighton eds.Google Scholar
  5. Kerr, F. W. L. Atypical facial neuralgias, their mechanism as inferred from anatomic and physiologic data. Proc. Mayo Clin. 36:254–260, 1961a.Google Scholar
  6. Kerr, F. W. L., and Olafson, R. A. Trigeminal and cervical volleys, convergence on single units in the spinal gray at C-1 and C-2. Arch. Neurol. 5:171–178, 1961.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Kerr, F. W. L. Structural relation of the trigeminal spinal tract to upper cervical roots and the solitary nucleus in the cat. Exp. Neurol. 4:134–148, 1961b.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Kerr, F. W. L. A mechanism to account for frontal headache in cases of posterior-fossa tumors. J. Neurosurg. 18:605–609, 1961c.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Tauxe. W. N., Sedlack, R. E., Pitlyk, P. J., and Kerr, F. W. L. Preliminary report on the localization of brain lesions with I131 labeled polyvinylpyrrolidone. Proc. Mayo Clin. 37:109–111, 1962.Google Scholar
  10. Donald, D. E., Kerr, F. W. L., Ferguson, D. A., and Bowron, P. Whole-body, closed-chest perfusion in the dog. Proc. Mayo Clin. 37:177–179, 1962.Google Scholar
  11. Kerr, F. W. L. Facial, vagal and glossopharyngeal nerves in the cat, afferent connections. Arch. Neurol. 6:264–281, 1962a.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Pitlyk, P. J., Kerr, F. W. L., Tauxe, W. N., Sedlack, R. E., and Svien, H. J. Localization of brain tumors with iodine-131 polyvinylpyrrolidone. Surg. Forum. 13:436–437, 1962.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Kerr, F. W. L., and Donald, D. E. Closed-chest hypothermic perfusion, cardiac arrest, and resuscitation. Surg. Forum 13:428–429, 1962.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Kerr, F. W. L. Trigeminal neuralgia, pathogenesis and description of a possible etiology for the cryptogenic variety. Trans. Am. Neurol. Assoc. 87:118–123, 1962b.PubMedGoogle Scholar
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  18. Kerr, F. W. L. Mechanisms, diagnosis, and management of some cranial and facial pain syndromes. Surg. Clin. North Am. 43:951–961, 1963b.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Kerr, F. W. L. The divisional organization of afferent fibers of the trigeminal nerve. Brain 86:721–732, 1963c.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Pitlyk, P. J., Tauxe, W. N., Kerr, F. W. L., Sedlack, R. E., and Svien, H. J. Localization of brain tumors with polyvinvylpyrrolidone-I131. Arch. Neurol. 9:437–443, 1963.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Kerr, F. W. L., and Brown, J. A. Pupillomotor pathways in the spinal cord. Arch. Neurol. 10:262–270, 1964.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Kerr, F. W. L., and Alexander, S. Descending autonomic pathways in the spinal cord. Arch. Neurol. 10:249–261, 1964.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Alexander, S., and Kerr, F. W. L. Blood pressure responses in acute compression of the spinal cord. J. Neurosurg. 21:485–491, 1964.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  25. Kerr, F. W. L., and Hollowell, O. W. Location of pupillomotor and accommodation fibres in the oculomotor nerve, experimental observations on paralytic mydriasis., J. Neurol. Neurosurg. Psychiatry 27:473–481, 1964.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Kerr, F. W. L., and Lysak, W. R. Somatotopic organization of trigeminal ganglion neurones. Arch. Neurol. 11:593–602, 1964.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Thomas, R. L., and Kerr, F. W. L. Electron microscopic studies of absorption of colloidal gold from the subarachnoid space. Mayo Clin. Proc. 40:603–608, 1965.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Higgs, B., Kerr, F. W. L., and Ellis, F. H., Jr. The experimental production of esophageal achalasia by electrolytic lesions in the medulla. J. Thorac. Cardiovasc. Surg. 50:613–625, 1965.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. Kerr, F. W. L. On the question of ascending fibers in the pyramidal tract, with observations on spinotrigeminal and spinopontine fibers. Exp. Neurol. 14:77–85, 1966.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  31. Kerr, F. W. L., and Miller, R. H. The pathology of trigeminal neuralgia, electron microscopic studies. Arch. Neurol. 15:308–319, 1966.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Kerr, F. W. L. Spinal V nucleolysis, intractable craniofacial pain. Surg. Forum. 17:419–421, 1966a.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. Kerr, F. W. L. The ultrastructure of the spinal tract of the trigeminal nerve and the substantia gelatinosa. Exp. Neurol. 16:359–376, 1966b.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Kerr, F. W. L. Evidence for a peripheral etiology of trigeminal neuralgia. J. Neurosurg. 26:168–174, 1967a.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  36. Kerr, F. W. L. Correlated light and electron microscopic observations on the normal trigeminal ganglion and sensory root in man. J. Neurosurg. 26:132–137, 1967c.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Enoch, D. M., and Kerr, F. W. L. Hypothalamic vasopressor and vesicopressor pathways. I. Functional studies. Arch. Neurol. 16:290–306, 1967a.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Enoch, D. M., and Kerr, F. W. L. Hypothalamic vasopressor and vesicopressor pathways. II. Anatomic study of their course and connection. Arch. Neurol. 16:307–320, 1967b.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Kerr, F. W. L. Function of the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus. Science 157:451–452, 1967d.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  41. Kerr, F. W. L., Kruger, L., Schwassmann, H. O., and Stern, R. Somatotopic organization of mechanoreceptor units in the trigeminal nuclear complex of the macaque. J. Comp. Neurol. 134:127–144, 1968.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Kerr, F. W. L. Radical decompression and dural grafting in severe cerebral edema. Mayo Clin. Proc. 43:852–864, 1968b.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  43. Kerr, F. W. L. A brace for the management of fracture dislocation of the cervical spine: Traction, immobilization, and myelography: Technical note. J. Neurosurg. 30:97–101, 1969a.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Kerr, F. W. L. Preserved vagal visceromotor function following destruction of the dorsal motor nucleus. J. Physiol. (Lond.) 202:755–769, 1969b.Google Scholar
  45. Kerr, F. W. L., and Preshaw, R. M. Secretomotor function of the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus. J. Physiol. (Lond.) 205:405–415, 1969.Google Scholar
  46. Kerr, F. W. L., Hendler, N., and Bowron, P. Viscerotopic organization of the vagus. J. Comp. Neurol. 138:279–289, 1970.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Kerr, F. W. L. Fine structure and functional characteristics of the primary trigeminal neuron, in: Trigeminal Neuralgia: Pathogenesis und Pathophysiology (R. Hassler and A. E. Walker, eds.), W. B. Saunders, Philadelphia, 1970a, pp. 18-21.Google Scholar
  48. Kerr, F. W. L. Peripheral versus central factors in trigeminal neuralgia, in: Trigeminal Neuralgia: Pathogenesis und Pathophysiology (R. Hassler and A. E. Walker, eds.), W. B. Saunders, Philadelphia 1970b, pp. 180–190.Google Scholar
  49. Kerr, F. W. L. The fine structure of the subnucleus caudalis of the trigeminal nerve. Brain Res. 23:129–145, 1970c.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Kerr, F. W. L. The organization of primary Afferents in the subnucleus caudalis of the trigeminal: A light and electron microscopic study of degeneration. Brain Res. 23:147–165, 1970d.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Kerr, F. W. L. Electron microscopic observations on primary deafferentation of the subnucleus caudalis of the trigeminal nerve, in: Oral—Facial Sensory and Motor Mechanisms (R. Dubner and Y. Kawamura, eds.), Appleton-Century-Crofts, New York, 1971, pp. 159–182.Google Scholar
  52. Kerr, F. W. L., and Pozuelo-Utanda, J. Suppression of physical dependence and induction of hypersensitivity to morphine by stereotaxic hypothalamic lesions in addict rats: A new theory of addiction. Mayo Clin. Proc. 46:653–665, 1971.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  53. Lippmann, H. H., and Kerr, F. W. L. Light and electron microscopic study of crossed ascending pathways in the anterolateral funiculus in monkey. Brain Res. 40:496–99, 1972.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Kerr, F. W. L. Central relationships of trigeminal and cervical primary Afferents in the spinal cord and medulla. Brain Res. 43:561–572, 1972a.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Kerr, F. W. L. The potential of cervical primary Afferents to sprout in the spinal nucleus of V following long term trigeminal denervation. Brain Res. 43:547–560, 1972b.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Pozuelo-Utanda, J., and Kerr, F. W. L. Suppression of craving and other signs of dependence in morphine-addicted monkeys by administration of alpha-methyl-para-tyrosine. Mayo Clin. Proc. 47:621–628, 1972.Google Scholar
  57. Loewy, A. D., Araujo, J. C, and Kerr, F. W. L. Pupillodilator pathways in the brain stem of the cat: Anatomical and electrophysiological identification of a central autonomic pathway. Brain Res. 60:65–91, 1973.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Kerr, F. W. L. Morphine self-administration in dependent monkeys: Reduction by hypothalamic lesions. Ircs Neuropharmacology (73-12) 7-1-16, 1973.Google Scholar
  59. Kerr, F. W. L., Triplett, J. N., Jr., and Beeler, G. W., Jr. Reciprocal (push-pull) effects of morphine on single units in the ventromedian and lateral hypothalamus and influence on other nuclei: With a comment on methadone effects during withdrawal from morphine. Brain Res. 74:81–103, 1974.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Little, J. R., Sundt, T. M., Jr., and Kerr, F. W. L. Neuronal alterations in developing cortical infarction. An experimental study in monkeys. J. Neurosurg. 40:186–198, 1974a.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Kerr, F. W. L., and Lippman, H. H. The primate spinothalamic tract as demonstrated by anterolateral cordotomy and commissural myelotomy. Adv. Neurol. 4:147–156, 1974.Google Scholar
  62. Little, J. R., Kerr, F. W. L., and Sundt, T. M., Jr. The role of lysosomes in production of ischemic nerve-cell changes. Arch. Neurol. 30:448–455, 1975b.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Little, J. R., Kerr, F. W. L., and Sundt, T. M., Jr. Synaptic alterations in developing cortical infarction: An experimental investigation in monkeys. Stroke 5:470–476, 1974c.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Little, J. R., Kerr, F. W. L., and Sundt, T. M., Jr. Significance of neuronal alterations in developing cortical infarction. Mayo Clin. Proc. 827-837, 1974d.Google Scholar
  65. Kerr, F. W. L. The ventral spinothalamic tract and other ascending systems of the ventral funiculus of the spinal cord. J. Comp. Neurol. 159:335–356, 1975a.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Little, J. R., Kerr, F. W. L., and Sundt, T. M., Jr. Microcirculatory obstruction in focal cerebral ischemia: Relationship to neuronal alterations. Mayo Clin. Proc. 50: 264–270, 1975.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  67. Nijensohn, D. E., and Kerr, F. W. L. The ascending projections of the dorsolateral funiculus of the spinal cord in the primate. J. Comp. Neurol. 161:459–470, 1975.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Gonzalez, G., Onoerio, B. M., and Kerr, F. W. L. Vasodilator system for the face. J. Neurosurg. 42:696–703, 1975.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Beckerman, S. B., and Kerr, F. W. L. Electrophysiologic evidence that neither sprouting nor neuronal hyperactivity occur following long term trigeminal or cervical primary deaffer-entation. Exp. Neurol. 50:427–438, 1975.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Kerr, F. W. L. Neuroanatomical substrates of nociception in the spinal cord. Pain 1:325–356, 1975b.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Kerr, F. W. L. Pain: A central inhibitory balance theory. Mayo Clin. Proc. 50:685–690, 1975c.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  72. Kerr, F. W. L. Segmental circuitry and spinal cord nociceptive mechanisms, in: Advances in Pain Research and Therapy, Vol. 1, (J. J. Bonica and D. Albe-Fessard, eds.), Raven Press, New-York, 1976, pp. 75–89.Google Scholar
  73. Little, J. R., Kerr, F. W. L., and Sundt, T. M., Jr. Microcirculatory obstruction in focal cerebral ischemia: an electron microscopic investigation in monkeys. Stroke 7:25–30, 1976.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. Narotzky, R. A., and Kerr, F. W. L. Marginal neurons of the spinal cord: Types, afferent synaptology and functional considerations. Brain Res. 139:1–20, 1978.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Kerr, F. W. L., Wilson, P. R., and Nijensohn, D. E. Acupuncture reduces the trigeminal evoked response in decerebrate cats. Exp. Neurol. 61:84–95, 1978.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Kerr, F. W. L. and Wilson, P. R. Pain. Annu. Rev. Neurosci. 1:83–102, 1978.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Kerr, F. W. L. Segmental circuitry and ascending pathways of the nociceptive system, in: Mechanisms of Pain and Analgesic Compounds, (R. F. Beers, Jr. and E. G. Bassett, eds.), Raven Press, New York, 1979, pp. 113–141.Google Scholar
  78. Kerr, F. W. L. Craniofacial neuralgias. Adv. Pain Res. Ther. 3:283–295, 1979.Google Scholar
  79. Fukushima, T., and Kerr, F. W. L. Organization of trigeminothalamic tracts and other thalamic afferent systems of the brainstem in the rat: Presence of gelatinosa neurons with thalamic connections. J. Comp. Neurol. 183:169–184, 1979.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Tyce, G. M., Sharpless, N. S., Kerr, F. W. L., and Muenter, M. D. Dopamine conjugate in cerebrospinal fluid. J. Neurochem. 34:210–212, 1980.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tony L. Yaksh
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Neurosurgery and PharmacologyMayo ClinicRochesterUSA

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