Omar Khan, MD, chair of the Wayne State University Department of Neurology, died Aug. 13.
Dr. Khan joined the Department of Neurology in 1998, and was appointed chair in 2012.
“He was a strong leader of his department,” School of Medicine Dean Jack D. Sobel, MD, said. “This is a substantial loss to our School of Medicine and a tremendous loss for multiple sclerosis patients, for whom Dr. Khan was a staunch advocate.”
Dr. Khan also served as director of the Wayne State University Multiple Sclerosis Center and Magnetic Resonance Image Analysis Laboratory, neurologist-in-chief for the Detroit Medical Center and formerly as associate chief medical officer for the Wayne State University Physician Group.
He received his medical degree in 1987 from the Allama Iqbal Medical College, University of the Punjab in Lahore, Pakistan. He served on the University of Maryland faculty from 1996 to 1998, when he joined Wayne State University.
Dr. Khan secured more than $8 million in research funding. He served as principal investigator in more than 55 studies and at the time of his death was the principal investigator in more than 15 clinical trials and investigator-initiated studies.
The Wayne State University Multiple Sclerosis Center, which he directed, is one of the top five MS centers in the country, with a patient population exceeding 4,000. He established the largest African-American multiple sclerosis clinic in the United States and is a founding member of the African-American Initiative in Multiple Sclerosis, a Detroit community-based endeavor. Dr. Khan’s MRI Analysis Laboratory focused on mechanisms of tissue injury and repair in neurodegenerative disorders, including multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
Funeral services for Dr. Khan were conducted Aug. 15 at the Islamic Association of Greater Detroit mosque in Rochester Hills, Mich. Interment took place the same day at White Chapel Cemetery in Troy, Mich.