James Heaton, PhD

James Heaton
Adjunct Professor
Communication Sciences and Disorders
PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences
(617) 726-0211
Office Location: 
MGH - Center for Laryngeal Surgery & Voice Rehabilitation

James T. Heaton received a BA degree in Psychology from Luther College (Decorah, IA) in 1990, and the MS and PhD degrees in Psychology (Neuroscience and Cognitive Science program) from the University of Maryland (College Park, MD) in 1993 and 1997, respectively.

He joined the faculty of Harvard Medical School in 1997 in the Department of Otology and Laryngology, and he is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery.

He is Adjunct Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at MGH Institute, where he teaches neuroanatomy and neurophysiology to graduate students seeking the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology. He is also Adjunct Professor for the PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences. Dr. Heaton has taught at the Institute since 1998.

Research Interests

  • Human voice and speech physiology
  • Facial and laryngeal nerve regeneration
  • Development of improved voice prosthetic equipment
  • Creation of a speech recognition platform that uses speech-related muscle signals as an input (instead of a microphone) for healthy and dysarthric populations
  • Implantable neural prosthetic systems for facial and laryngeal reanimation after nerve palsy


Albadawi, H., Oklu, R., Cormier, N.R., O'Keefe, R.M., Heaton, J.T., Kobler, J.B., Austen, W.G., Watkins, M.T. (2014). Hind Limb Ischemia Reperfusion Injury in Diet Induce Obese Mice. Journal of Surgical Research, 2014, Available online 17 January.

Weinberg, J.S., Kleissa, I.J., Knox, C.J., Heaton, J.T., Hadlock, T.A. (2015). The Dilator Naris Muscle as a Reporter of Facial Nerve Regeneration in a Rat Model. Annals of plastic surgery. doi: 10.1097/SAP.0000000000000273

Frigerio A, Heaton JT, Cavallari P, Knox C, Hohman MH, Hadlock TA. Electrical stimulation of eye blink in individuals with acute facial palsy: progress toward a bionic blink. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery 2015 (in press).

Puram, S., Chow, H., Wu, C-W., Heaton, J.T., Kamani, D., Gorti, G., et al. Electrophysiologic Changes Reliability Predict Vocal Cord Paralysis Associated with Recurrent Laryngeal Nerve Compressive Neuropraxic Injury in a Canine Model. Head & Neck (in press).

Heaton, J.T., Sheu, S., Hohman, M.H., Knox, C.J., Weinberg, J.S., Kleiss, I.J., and Hadlock, T.A. Rat whisker movement after facial nerve lesion: Evidence for Autonomic Contraction of Skeletal Muscle. Neuroscience, 2014, 265(18 April), pp 9-20.

See Curriculum Vitae for complete list.


BA, Psychology, Luther College, Decorah, IA
MS, Psychology/Neuroscience, University of Maryland
PhD, Psychology/Neuroscience, University of Maryland

Curriculum Vitae