Zhi-De Deng, PhD

Engineer | Physicist | Brain Stimulation Researcher

Full-Time Awesome Person

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About Zhi

Dr. Deng is a Staff Scientist, Director of the Computational Neurostimulation Research Program, Noninvasive Neuromodulation Unit, at the National Institute of Mental Health. He is also Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Duke University School of Medicine. He received the SB degree in physics, SB and MEng in electrical engineering and computer science, with a minor in economics, from MIT. He received PhD and MPhil in electrical engineering, with a graduate minor in neuroscience, from Columbia University. He completed postdoctoral training at Duke and research fellowship at NIMH.

Zhi's research focuses on computational approaches 1) to understand the physics and biophysics of neurostimulation, 2) to optimize dosing and individualization, and 3) to advance noninvasive brain stimulation technology development via model-informed design. His work on electric field modeling of transcranial magnetic stimulation is widely cited and provided evidence that informed regulatory clearance of TMS therapeutic systems. He has received career development award from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences and NARSAD Young Investigator Award to develop the next generation seizure therapy. His vision is to transform psychiatry through engineering innovation.

When not working at one of his three jobs, Zhi performs magic, cooks, and plays with his pets, who have their own Instagram page. Follow for updates. Or, you can do something productive with your life... but Zhi doesn't recommend it.


Clinical Trial

Neurocognitive effects of combined electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and venlafaxine in geriatric depression: Phase 1 of the PRIDE study

Lisanby SH, McClintock SM, Alexopoulos G, Bailine SH, Bernhardt E, Briggs MC, Cullum M, Deng ZD, Dooley M, Geduldig ET, Greenberg RM, Husain MM, Kaliora S, Knapp RG, Latoussakis V, Liebman LS, McCall WV, Mueller M, Petrides G, Prudic J, Rosenquist PB, Rudorfer MV, Sampson S, Teklehaimanot AA, Tobias KG, Weiner RD, Young RC, Kellner CH

Am J Geriatr Psychiatry, in press, 2019. DOI: 10.1016/j.jagp.2019.10.003


Effects of online repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) on cognitive processing: a meta-analysis and recommendations for future studies

Beynel L, Appelbaum LG, Luber B, Crowell CA, Hilbig SA, Lim W, Nguyen D, Chrapliwy NA, Davis SW, Cabeza R, Lisanby SH, Deng ZD

Neurosci Biobehav Rev, 107: 47–58, 2019. PMID: 31473301. DOI: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2019.08.018


Magnetic seizure therapy: towards personalized seizure therapy for major depression

Kallioniemi E, McClintock SM, Deng ZD, Husain MM, Lisanby SH

Personalized Med Psych, in press, 2019. DOI: 10.1016/j.pmip.2019.04.003


Neural and psychological predictors of cognitive enhancement and impairment due to neurostimulation

Yang LZ, Zhang W, Wang W, Yang Z, Wang H, Deng ZD, Li C, Qiu B, Zhang DR, Cohen Kadosh R, Li H, Zhang X

Clinical Trial

A double-blind pilot dosing study of low field magnetic stimulation (LFMS) for treatment-resistant depression (TRD)

Dubin MJ, Ilieva I, Deng ZD, Thomas J, Cochran A, Kravets K, Brody BD, Christos PJ, Kocsis JH, Liston C, Gunning FM

J Affect Disord, 249: 286–293, 2019. PMCID: 30784726. DOI: 10.1016/j.jad.2019.02.039


Non-high frequency heart rate chaos: a noninvasive marker of REM sleep and obstructive sleep apnea syndrome in children

Deng ZD, Arzeno AM, Chang H, Katz ES, Marcus CL, Poon CS

bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/457630

Clinical Trial

Utilizing trancranial direct current stimulation to enhance laparoscopic technical skills training: a randomized controlled trial

Cox ML, Deng ZD, Palmer H, Watts A, Beynel L, Young JR, Lisanby SH, Migaly J, Appelbaum LG

bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/455329


Rapid-acting antidepressant therapies

Kadriu B, Subramanian S, Deng ZD, Henter ID, Park LT, Zarate CA Jr

To appear in Primer on Depression, MH Trivedi Ed., Oxford University Press. PsyArXiv DOI: 10.31234/osf.io/xwk57


Modulation of resting connectivity between the mesial frontal cortex and basal ganglia

Popa T*, Morris LS*, Hunt R, Deng ZD, Horovitz S, Mente K, Shitara H, Baek K, Hallett M, Voon V

Front Neurol, 10: 587, 2019. PMCID: PMC6593304. DOI: 10.3389/fneur.2019.00587


Neural circuit repair by low-intensity magnetic stimulation requires cellular magneto-receptors and specific stimulation patterns

Dufor T, Grehl S, Tang AD, Doulazmi M, Traoré M, Debray N, Dubacq C, Deng ZD, Mariani J, Lohof AM, Sherrard RM

Sci Adv, in press, 2019. bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/424317


Design and analysis of a whole body non-contact electromagnetic stimulation device with field modulation

Makarov SN, Bogdanov G, Noetscher GM, Appleyard W, Ludwig R, Joutsa JT, Deng ZD

bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/416065

Clinical TMS

High-frequency repetitive TMS for suicidal ideation in adolescents with depression

Croarkin PE, Nakonezny PA, Deng ZD, Romanowicz M, Vande Voort JL, Doruk Camsari D, Schak KM, Port JD, Lewis CP

J Affect Disord, 239: 282–290, 2018. PMCID: PMC6431788. DOI: 10.1016/j.jad.2018.06.048


Statistical model of motor evoked potentials

Goetz SM, Madhi Alavi SM, Deng ZD, Peterchev AV

IEEE Trans Neural Syst Rehabil Eng, 27(8): 1539–1545, 2019. PMCID: PMC6719775. DOI: 10.1109/TNSRE.2019.2926543


Redesigning existing transcranial magnetic stimulation coils to reduce energy: application to low field magnetic stimulation

Wang B, Shen MR, Deng ZD, Smith JE, Tharayil JJ, Gurrey CJ, Gomez LJ, Peterchev AV

J Neural Eng, 15(3): 036022, 2018. PMCID: PMC5929994. DOI: 10.1088/1741-2552/aaa505


Rigor and reproducibility in research with transcranial electrical stimulation: An NIMH-sponsored workshop

Bikson M, Brunoni AR, Charvet LE, Clark VP, Cohen LG, Deng ZD, Dmochowski J, Edwards DJ, Frohlich F, Kappenman ES, Lim KO, Loo C, Mantovani A, McMullen DP, Parra LC, Pearson M, Richardson JD, Rumsey JM, Sehatpour P, Sommers D, Unal G, Wassermann EM, Woods AJ, Lisanby SH

Brain Stimul, 11(3): 465–480, 2018. PMCID: PMC5997279. DOI: 10.1016/j.brs.2017.12.008



Mount Sinai Icahn School of Medicine

Zhi presented at the Depression and Anxiety Center Seminar, on Rational Design of Individualized Noninvasive Brain Stimulation.



NIMH Intramural Research Program

Zhi presented at the NIMH IRP Investigator Seminar, on Engineering Better Neuromodulation Technology.



GEMRIC Workshop, Bergen

Zhi presented at the 2nd Bergen workshop of the Global ECT-MRI Collaboration, on Electric Field Modeling of ECT.

Download slides here.



NYC Neuromodulation/NANS

Zhi directed a workshop at the Joint Meeting of NYC Neuromodulation Conference & NANS Summer Series, on Computational Modeling in Neuromodulation.

Download workshop slides here.



Brain Stimulation Conference, Vancouver

Zhi presented at the 3rd International Brain Stimulation Conference, on Individualized Electroconvulsive Therapy for Treatment of Depression.

Download slides here.



UCLA Brain Mapping Center

Zhi presented at UCLA Brain Mapping Seminar, on Computational Neurostimulation.




Zhi presented Grand Rounds Webinar for the Clinical TMS Society, on TMS Physics, Devices, and Modeling.

Download slides here.



EMBC, Honolulu

Zhi chaired an invited session at the 40th International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, on Computational Human Models: Brain Stimulation.


Keep in Touch

+1 301 594 0387

10 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892


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