J. Kent Werner, Jr.


Commander, Navy

Department of Primary Appointment:
School of Medicine
Director of Research, Walter Reed Sleep Disorders Center
Location: Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD
Research Interests:
Sleep and glymphatics physiology, modulation, and related molecular and electrophysiological biomarkers
Traumatic brain injury, its impact on sleep related biology, and novel therapeutic approaches
Office Phone


United States Naval Academy, B.S. Chemistry, Spanish 1979-2001
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, M.D. 2003-2012
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Ph.D. Neuroscience & Cellular Molecular Medicine 2003-2012
Medicine Internship, Osler, Johns Hopkins SOM, 2012-2013
Neurology Residency, Johns Hopkins SOM, 2013-2016
Fellowship, Sleep Medicine, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 2018-2019


J. Kent Werner, Jr., MD PhD, is a neurologist and neuroscientist serving as an active duty Commander in the Navy Medical Corps. An Associate Professor in the Department of Neurology and in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at the Uniformed Services University in Bethesda, MD, he is board certified in sleep medicine and neurology, treating patients with sleep and traumatic brain injury (TBI)-related neurological disorders at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) and in the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE). He also serves as the Director of Research of the WRNMMC Sleep Disorders Center. His research focuses on the impact of TBI on sleep physiology and cognitive performance. After graduating from the US Naval Academy, he deployed as a Surface Warfare Officer onboard the USS MAHAN (DDG-72), earning his Surface Warfare qualification. Upon entering the Medical Corps, he completed his medical degree, cellular and molecular neuroscience doctorate, and neurology residency at Johns Hopkins University, where he serves currently as Adjunct Faculty. He previously served as Chief of Neurology at Fort Belvoir Community Hospital before completing his fellowship in sleep medicine at WRNMMC.

Career Highlights: Positions, Projects, Deployements, Awards and Additional Publications

Department of Veterans Affairs National Lectureship: HSR&D Mild TBI Diag. and Treatment, 5/2021

American Academy of Sleep Medicine Annual Investigator Award, 6/2020

First Place, Johns Hopkins Sleep and Circadian Research Day, Poster competition, 6/2019

Joint Service Commendation Medal, Fort Belvoir Community Hospital, 6/2018

Johns Hopkins Neurology “Brain Award” for Teaching, 6/2014

Student delegate to Academy of Achievement Summit, Kona, HI, 6/2008

Dr. Harold Lamport Medical Research Scholar Award, 8/2006

Howard Hughes Medical Institute Research Fellowship Award, 9/2005

Representative Bibliography

Haynes ZA, Stewart IJ, Poltavskiy E, Holley A, Janak J, Howard JT, Watrous J, Walker L, Wickwire E, Werner JK, Zarzabal L, Sim A, Gundlapalli A, Collen JF. Obstructive sleep apnea among survivors of combat-related traumatic injury: a retrospective cohort study. J Clin Sleep Med. 2021 Jul 16. doi: 10.5664/jcsm.9530

Werner JK, Shahim P, Pucci JU, Chen L, Raiciulescu S, Gill JM, Nakase-Richardson R, Diaz-Arrastia R, Kenney K. Poor sleep correlates with biomarkers of neurodegeneration in mild traumatic brain injury patients: a CENC Study. Sleep. 2020 Dec 6. doi: 10.1093/sleep/zsaa272

Haber M, Amyot F, Lynch C, Sandsmark D, Kenney K, Werner JK, Moore C, Flesher K, Silverman E, Woodson S, Chou Y, Pham D, Diaz-Arrastia R. Imaging Biomarkers of Vascular and Axonal Injury are Spatially Distinct in Chronic Traumatic Brain Injury. J. Cereb. Blood Flow and Metab. 2021 Jan 14

Lippa SM, Werner JK, Miller MC, Gill JM, Diaz-Arrastia R, Kenney K. Recent Advances in Blood-Based Biomarkers of Remote Combat-Related Traumatic Brain Injury. Curr Neurol Neurosci Rep. 2020 Sep 28;20(12):54

Fogarty A, Guay C, Simoneau G, Werner JK, Ellenbogen J. Head Motion Predicts Transient Loss of Consciousness in Human Head Trauma: A Case-Control Study of Mixed Martial Artists. Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2019;98(10):859–865.

Werner JK, Baumann CR. TBI and Sleep-Wake Disorders: pathophysiology, clinical management, and the future. Semin Neurol. 2017 Aug;37(4):419-432.

Mustapic M, Eitan E, Werner JK, Berkowitz ST, Lazaropoulos MP, Tran J, Goetzl EJ, Kapogiannis D. Plasma Extracellular Vesicles Enriched for Neuronal Origin: A Potential Window into Brain Pathologic Processes. Front Neurosci. 2017 May 22;11:278

Werner JK, Stevens RD. Traumatic brain injury: recent advances in plasticity and regeneration. Curr Opin Neurol. 2015 Dec;28(6):565-73

Sabatino JJ Jr, Werner JK, Newsome SD. A rare case of hyponatremia from a hypothalamic lesion in a patient with multiple sclerosis. Mult Scler. 2015 Apr;21(5):662-5

Werner JK, Chakraborty A, Koldobskiy MA, Mustafa AK, Juluri KR, Pietropaoli J, Snowman AM, Snyder SH. Casein kinase-2 mediates cell survival through phosphorylation and degradation of inositol hexakisphosphate kinase-2. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 Feb 8;108(6):2205-9.