Dr. Kokkinos received the diploma of Electrical & Computer Engineering and the MSc in Hardware-Software Integrated Systems from the Engineering School of the University of Patras, Greece, in 1998 and 2001. After working in the microelectronics industry, he shifted his interest towards the brain. In the graduate program of the Medical School of the University of Patras, Vasileios received the MSc in Basic Medical Sciences: Neurosciences in 2003, completing a thesis on the neurophysiology of the rat hippocampus. During the same period, he attended the undergraduate program of the Philosophy Department of the University of Patras, from which he graduated in 2005, with a thesis on neuroscience-derived theories of mind on visual perception. In the neurological sciences graduate program at McGill University, he then completed a thesis on the neurophysiology of human eye-head motor coordination, graduating in 2007.
Under the supervision of George K. Kostopoulos, MD, PhD, Dr. Kokkinos then joined the neurophysiology unit of the Medical School of the University of Patras and completed a PhD thesis on the neurophysiology of normal human sleep in 2010. One year of his PhD training (2008-09) was devoted to intense and highly specialized training in epilepsy at the UCL Institute of Neurology, in London. He completed a training/research fellowship on fMRI and EEG-fMRI for presurgical evaluation of epilepsy, under the supervision of John S. Duncan, MD, PhD, and Louis Lemieux, PhD. During the same time, he was accepted in the graduate course on epileptology at King’s College in London, from which he graduated in 2009 with distinction, completing a thesis on invasive electrical cortical stimulation for patients undergoing epilepsy surgery under the supervision of Gonzalo Alarcon, MD, PhD, and Antonio Valentin, MD, PhD. He also attended the research team of the Department of Clinical Neurophysiology and Epilepsies at St. Thomas’ Hospital in London where he was trained in pediatric and adult epileptic EEG by Chrysostomos P. Panayiotopoulos, MD, PhD, and Michalis Koutroumanidis, MD, PhD.
From 2009 to 2016, Dr. Kokkinos was head of neurophysiology and neuroimaging of the epilepsy program at St. Luke’s Hospital in Thessaloniki, Greece. His responsibilities in the pediatric and adult epilepsy program included the performance and supervision of procedures during both the non-invasive (video-EEG, MRI, fMRI, EEG-fMRI, DTI-tractography) and the invasive phases (acute and chronic ECoG, cortical electrical stimulation, neuronavigation) of the pre-surgical evaluation and surgical treatment protocol. From 2010 to 2017, Dr. Kokkinos also held a post-doctoral fellowship at the neurophysiology unit of the University of Patras Medical School under the mentorship of Dr. Kostopoulos, focusing on the neurophysiologic relations of sleep and epilepsy. He completed a second PhD thesis on neurophysiological features of focal and generalized epileptic syndromes of childhood in 2016.
In 2017, he joined the faculty of the University of Pittsburgh Department of Neurological Surgery as a Research Instructor and lead neurophysiologist for epilepsy research. He supported the Comprehensive Epilepsy Program of University of Pittsburgh in surgical sEEG planning, intra-operative coordination and electrode implantation optimization, 3D reconstruction of sEEG implantation, iEEG interpretation and cortical electrical stimulation. Among other work, he discovered and published the first evidence for electrophysiological biomarkers of clinical response to RNS Therapy. He also established the intracranial EEG correlate of the 14&6/sec positive spikes EEG variant, and named it the hippocampal barque. Dr. Kokkinos is now Instructor of Neurosurgery at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, focused in clinical epilepsy research and providing extensive clinical services to the Epilepsy Surgery Program.