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Ze Wang, PhD

Academic Title:


Primary Appointment:

Diagnostic Radiology and Nuclear Medicine

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670 W Baltimore St

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Education and Training

  • 1995, B.A. Hefei University of Technology, Major: Signal Detection Technology and Instruments.
  • 2003, PhD. Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Major: Biomedical Engineering. Thesis title: Data Compression Method Development in Medical Virtual Reality. Advisor: Prof Yi-Sheng Zhu.
  • 2003-2006, Postdoc. Department of Neurology. Mentor: Prof John A. Detre.


Ze Wang, PhD, IEEE Senior Member.  Dr. Wang got his PhD from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 2003 and his post-doc training by Dr. John A Detre at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn). He was a Research Assistant Professor at Upenn from 2009-2014, and then a Principal Investigator and Professor of Center of Cognition and Brain Disorders in Hangzhou Normal University from 2014-2016. He is now an Associate Professor of Radiology in University of Maryland School of Medicine. He has published 131 peer-reviewed journal papers and 6 top conference papers mostly as the first author, corresponding author, last author, or sole author. His H-index is 48.  Dr. Wang’s research focuses on MR technique development, image processing, biosignal processing, neuroimaging in Alzheimer’s Disease, addiction, and brain development. His recent research interest also includes brain modulations and deep machine learning. His representative work in MRI includes a 2D and 3D surrounding neighbors-based parallel imaging reconstruction algorithm, a dictionary-independent fast parameter searching algorithm for magnetic resonance fingerprinting (MRF), a series of arterial spin labeling (ASL) perfusion MRI signal processing methods. In fMRI and neuroimaging, he and his lab developed a brain entropy mapping tool and a multivariate lesion-symptom mapping algorithm. His translational research mainly focuses on Alzheimer’s Disease and Drug addiction. In AD, he and colleagues have found that AD patients have hypoperfusion in precuneus, parietal, and medial temporal cortex, which becomes more prominent when disease progresses. In addition to method development, Dr. Wang has developed 4 software packages: 3D Fast spin echo spiral readout ASL perfusion MRI sequence and online reconstruction program, ASL  signal processing toolbox(ASLtbx), Brain entropy mapping toolbox (BENtbx), multivariate-lesion symptom mapping toolbox (SVR-LSM). All are freely available from In 2005, Dr. Wang has been awarded with the 2005 Shanghai Excellent Thesis Award, and the Nomination Award of 2005 China National 100 Excellent PhD Thesis. He has been a board member or associate editors for several international journals and an ad hoc reviewer for NIH and other international foundations.

Research/Clinical Keywords

Arterial spin labeling perfusion MRI, signal processing, image reconstruction, machine learning, lesion-symptom mapping, brain entropy mapping

Highlighted Publications

More information about my previous and current work can be found in

1. An inverse-U shape brain entropy progression trajectory identified in aging and AD. In a recently published paper (, we characterized resting brain entropy in normal aging and patients with different level of Alzheimer's Disease (AD) (from early Mild Cognitive Impairment to AD) using resting state fMRI. We found abnormal brain entropy (BEN) changes in the default mode network, medial temporal lobe, and prefrontal cortex which are associated with cognitive impairment and AD pathology. Collectively, the results showed that: (1) BEN increased with age and pathological deposition in normal aging but decreased with age and pathological deposition in the AD continuum; (2) AD showed catastrophic BEN reduction, which was related to more severe cognitive impairment and daily function disability; and (3) BEN decreased with education years in normal aging, but not in the AD continuum. BEN evolution follows an inverse-U trajectory when AD progresses from normal aging to AD dementia. Education is beneficial for suppressing the entropy increase potency in normal aging.

2. Long-lasting effects of insufficient sleep on behavior, cognition, mental health, and brain in pre-adolescents (paper in press by Lancet Child & Adolescent Health).