James Tao, MD PhD

Associate Professor
Director, Adult Epilepsy Program
Director, Epilepsy Fellowship Program
Director, Clinical Neurophysiology Fellowship Program

Patient Calls: 773-702-6222
Fax: 773-834-4800

James Tao, MD, PhD, specializes in the diagnosis and management of seizure disorders and epilepsy syndromes. Dr. Tao is interested in the use of surgery and vagal nerve stimulation for treating patients with medically resistant epilepsy. As director of the Electroencephalography (EEG) Laboratory at the University of Chicago, he oversees EEG studies that diagnose epileptic seizure and localize it in the patient’s brain to help guide surgical resection.

In his basic research laboratory, Dr. Tao studies how the connections between neurons relate to epileptogenesis--the biological changes in a normal brain that lead to the development of epilepsy. His clinical research focuses on the use of different types of imaging, including 3-dimensional computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), to guide epilepsy surgery.

Education & Training
  • Fellowship: Epilepsy, The University of Chicago Medicine
  • Residency: The University of Chicago Medicine
  • Internship: University of Illinois Medical Center, Chicago
  • Ph.D. Neuroscience, University of Cincinnati
  • M.D.: Wannan Medical College/Capital Institute of Medicine, China
Board Certification
  • Neurology, American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology
  • Clinical Neurophysiology, American Board of Clinical Neurophysiology
Clinical Interests
  • Neurology
  • Clinical neurophysiology
  • Epilepsy
  • Epilepsy surgery
  • EEG Seizures
  • Vagal nerve stimulation (VNS)
Research Interests
  • Roles of scalp and intracranial EEG in the localization of epileptogenic focus
  • Multimodality imaging guided epilepsy surgery
  • Synaptic plasticity and epileptogenesis
  • Residency neuroscience course: EEG Fundamentals and epilepsy syndromes.
  • Fellow lectures: 1) EEG instrumentation; 2) Vagal Nerve Stimulation for Epilepsy Therapy; 3) EEG Epileptiform interictal and ictal patterns.
  • Neuroscience teaching course in the Department of Psychiatry and Psychology: Diagnosis and management of seizure disorder.
Society Memberships
  • American Academy of Neurology
  • American Clinical Neurophysiology
  • Society American Epilepsy Society
Selected Publications
  • View a partial list of Dr. Tao's publications through the National Library of Medicine's PubMed online database.