Current Research




Gao Lab has moved to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (Wei Gao, Ph.D., Director of Neuroimaging Research, Biomedical Imaging Research Institute, Department of Biomedical Sciences and Imaging) and we are currently seeking highly motivated post-doctoral researchers, if interested, please contact Dr. Wei Gao at

Or visit us at:

Gao Lab at Cedars-Sinai



Functional Brain Imaging Lab

  Department of Radiology

& Biomedical Research Imaging Center



Wei Gao, Weili Lin, Karen Grewen, John H Gilmore. Functional Connectivity of the Infant Human Brain: Plastic and Modifiable. The Neuroscientist


Xiujuan Geng, Gang Li, Z Lu, Wei Gao, Li Wang, Dinggang Shen, Hongtu Zhu, John H Gilmore. Structural and Maturational Covariance in Early Childhood Brain Development Accepted for Cerebral Cortex




Robert Emerson, Sarah Short, Weili Lin, John H Gilmore, Wei Gao. Network-Level Connectivity Dynamics of Movie Watching in 6-Year-Old Children Accepted for Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.


Amanda Elton, Adriana Di Martino, Heather Cody Hazlett, Wei Gao. Neural Connectivity Evidence for a Categorical-Dimensional Hybrid Model of Autism Spectrum Disorder. Accepted for Biological Psychiatry.


Karen Grewen, Andrew Salzwedel, Wei Gao. Functional connectivity disruption in neonates with prenatal marijuana exposure. Accepted for Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.


Amanda Elton, Wei Gao. Task-positive Functional Connectivity of the Default-Mode Network Transcends Task Domain. Accepted for Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience.


Hae W. Shin, Valerie Jewells, Arif Sheikh, Jingwen Zhang, Hongtu Zhu, Hongyu An, Wei Gao, DDinggang Shen, Eldad Hadar, Weili Lin. Initial Experience in Hybrid PET-MRI for Evaluation of Refractory Focal Onset Epilepsy. Accepted for Seizure


Amanda Elton, Wei Gao. Task-Related Modulation of Functional Connectivity Variability and Its Behavioral Correlations. Accepted for Human Brain Mapping.


Andrew P. Salzwedel, Karen M. Grewen, Clement Vachet, Guido Gerig, Weili Lin, Wei Gao. Prenatal Drug Exposure Affects Neonatal Brain Functional Connectivity. Accepted for Journal of Neuroscience. ~ Featured on Science Daily




Sarael Alcauter, Weili Lin, J Keith Smith, Barbara D. Goldman, J. Steven Reznick, John H Gilmore, Wei Gao. Frequency of Spontaneous BOLD Signal Shifts during Infancy and Correlates with Cognitive Performance. Accepted for Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience.


Alice M. Graham, Jennifer H. Pfeiferb, Philip A. Fisherb, Weili Lin, Wei Gao, Damien A. Fair. The Potential of Infant fMRI Research and the Study of Early Life Stress as a Promising Exemplar. Accepted for Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience


Lucile Bompard, Shun Xu, Martin Styner, Beatriz Paniagua, Mihye Ahn, Ying Yuan, Valerie Jewells, Wei Gao, Dinggang Shen, Hongtu Zhu, Weili Lin. Multivariate Longitudinal Shape Analysis of Human Lateral Ventricles during the First Twenty-Four Months of Life. PLoS One. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0108306


Wei Gao, Amanda Elton, Hongtu Zhu, Sarael Alcauter, Keith Smith, John H Gilmore, Weili Lin. Inter-subject Variability of and Genetic Effects on the Brain’s Functional Connectivity during Infancy. Journal of Neuroscience: 34(34): 11288-11296; 2014


Sarael Alcauter, Weili Lin, J Keith Smith, Sarah J. Short, Barbara D. Goldman, J. Steven Reznick, John H Gilmore, Wei Gao. Development of Thalamocortical Connectivity during Infancy and Its Cognitive Correlations. Journal of Neuroscience: 34(27):9067–9075, 2014.


True Price, Chong-Yaw Wee, Wei Gao, and Dinggang Shen. Multiple-Network Classification of Childhood Autism using Functional Connectivity Dynamics. Medical Image Computing and Computer Assisted Intervention (MICCAI), Boston, USA, Sep. 14-18, 2014


Wei Gao, Sarael Alcauter, Amanda Elton, Keith Smith, Juanita Ramirez, Weili Lin. Functional Network Development during the First Year: Relative Sequence and Socioeconomic Correlations. Accepted for Cerebral Cortex


Amanda Elton, Sarael Alcauter, Wei Gao. Network Connectivity Abnormality Profile Supports a Categorical-Dimensional Hybrid Model of ADHD. Accepted for Human Brain Mapping


Wei Gao, Sarael Alcauter,John H Gilmore, Keith Smith, Weili Lin. Development of Human Brain Cortical Network Architecture during Infancy. Accepted for Brain Structure and Function


Ziwen Peng, Feng Shi, Changzheng Shi, Guodong Miao, Qiong Yang, Wei Gao, Jason J. Wolff, Raymond C.K. Chan and Dinggang Shen. Structural and Diffusion Property Alterations in Unaffected Siblings of Patients with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Accepted for PLoS ONE.




Amanda Elton, Wei Gao. Divergent Task-Dependent Functional Connectivity of Executive Control and Salience Networks. Accepted for Cortex


Sarael Alcauter, Weili Lin, J Keith Smith, John H Gilmore, Wei Gao. Consistent Anterior-Posterior Segregation of the Insula during the First Two Years of Life. Accepted for Cerebral Cortex


Biao Jie , Daoqiang Zhang , Wei Gao, Qian Wang, Chong-Yaw Wee, Dinggang Shen. Integration of Network Topological and Connectivity Properties for Neuroimaging Classification. Accepted for IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering.


Wei Gao, John H Gilmore, Sarael Alcauter, Weili Lin. The dynamic reorganization of the default-mode network during a visual classification task. Front. Syst. Neurosci . 2013, 7:34. doi:10.3389/fnsys.2013.00034.


Carlos R. Hernandez-Castillo, Sarael Alcauter, Victor Galvez, Fernando A. Barrios, Petra Yescas, Adriana Ochoa, Lizbeth Garcia, Rosalinda Diaz, Wei Gao*, Juan Fernandez-Ruiz*. Disruption of visual and motor connectivity in SCA7. Movement Disorders. 2013. doi: 10.1002/mds.25618. [Epub ahead of print].


Zhen Wei, Sarael Alcauter, Ke Jin, Zi-wen Peng, Wei Gao. Graph Theoretical Analysis of Sedation’s Effect on Whole Brain Functional System in School-Aged Children. Brain Connect. 2013;3(2):177-89. doi: 10.1089/brain.2012.0125. Epub 2013 Mar 21.




Feng Shi, Pew-Thian Yap, Wei Gao, Weili Lin, John H Gilmore, Dinggang Shen. Altered Structural Connectivity in Neonates at Genetic Risk for Schizophrenia: A Combined Study Using Morphological and White Matter Networks . Neuroimage. 2012 Sep;62(3):1622-33. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2012.05.026. Epub 2012 May 19


Wei Gao, John H Gilmore, Dinggang Shen, J Keith Smith, Hongtu Zhu, Weili Lin. The Synchronization within and Interaction between the Default and Dorsal Attention Networks in Early Infancy. Cerebral Cortex. 2012 doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhs043


Wei Gao, John H Gilmore, Kelly S. Giovanello, J Keith Smith, Dinggang Shen, Hongtu Zhu, Weili Lin. Temporal and Spatial Evolution of Brain Network Topology during the First Two Years of Life. PLoS One, 6(9): e25278. 2011.




Martha Skup, Hongtu Zhu, Yaping Wang, Kelly S Giovanello, Ja-An Lin, Dinggang Shen, Feng Shi, Japing Wang, Wei Gao, Weili Lin, Yong Fan, Heping Zhang. The Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative. Sex Differences in Grey Matter Atrophy Patterns among AD and aMCI patients: Results from ADNI. NeuroImage. 2011 doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2011.02.060 .


Wei Gao, Weili Lin. Frontal parietal control network regulates the anti-correlated default and dorsal attention networks. Human Brain Mapping, 2011 Mar 9. doi: 10.1002/hbm.21204. (Epub ahead of print).




Wei Gao, Hongtu Zhu, Kelly S. Giovanello, Weili Lin. Multivariate Network-Level Approach to Detect Interactions between Large-Scale Functional Systems. Medical Image Computing and Computer Assisted Intervention (MICCAI), Beijing, China, September 20-24, 2010.




Wei Gao, Hongtu Zhu, Kelly S. Giovanello, J Keith Smith, Dinggang Shen, John H Gilmore, Weili Lin. Evidence on the emergence of the brain’s default network from 2-week-old to 2-year-old healthy pediatric subjects. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), Vol.106, No.16. 6790-6795, 2009.


Wei Gao, Hongtu Zhu, Weili Lin. A unified approach for diffusion tensor imaging technique. NeuroImage, Vol 44, 729-741, 2009.


Wei Gao, Weili Lin, Yasheng Chen, Guido Gerig, J Keith Smith, Vallery Jewells, John H Gilmore. Temporal and spatial development of axonal maturation and myelination of white matter in the developing brain. AJNR Am J Neuroradiol Vol 30, 290-296 2009.


Hongtu Zhu, Yimei Li, Joseph G.Ibrahim, Xiaoyan Shi, Hongyu An, Yashen Chen, Wei Gao, Weili Lin, Daniel B. Rowe, and Bradley S. Peterson. Regression Models for Identifying Noise Sources in Magnetic Resonance Images. Journal of the American Statistical Association (JASA). Vol. 104, 623-637, 2009




Weili Lin, Quan Zhu, Wei Gao, Yasheng Chen, C.-H. Toh, Marin Styner, Guido Gerig, J Keith Smith, B. Biswal, John H Gilmore. Functional Connectivity MR Imaging Reveals Cortical Functional Connectivity in the Developing Brain. AJNR Am J Neuroradiol Vol 29 (10), 1883-1889, 2008.