Rafeed Alkawadri, MD

  • Associate Professor of Neurology
  • Director, Human Brain Mapping Program

Dr. Alkawadri is an Associate Professor in the Department of Neurology at the University of Pittsburgh. He assumed the position in October 2018, after he was an attending epileptologist and neurophysiologist in the Department of Neurology at Yale School of Medicine and the Director, of the Human Brain Mapping Program and Evoked Potentials Laboratory for 6 years.  Dr. Alkawadri provides clinical care with emphasis on drug-resistant epilepsy and continues to investigate brain networks in collaboration with colleagues at the center and within the region. 

Education & Training

  • MD, University of Damascus – Damascus, Syria,  Medicine
  • Intern, UT Southwestern - Dallas, Texas, Internal Medicine
  • Resident, UT Southwestern - Dallas, Texas, Neurology
  • Fellow, Cleveland Clinic - Cleveland, Ohio, Epilepsy

Specialized Areas of Clinical, Research and/or Educational Interests 

  • Research: Artificial Intelligence; Brain; Brain Mapping; Evoked Potentials; Gyrus Cinguli; Organizational Innovation; Biomedical Research; Support Vector Machines; Brain-Computer Interface
  • Clinical: Anesthesia; Electroencephalography; Electrophysiology; Epilepsy; Intraoperative Care; Magnetoencephalography; Deep Brain Stimulation
  • Education: Evoked Potentials; History of Medicine; Neurosciences; Computational Biology; Biomedical Technology; Neurobiology; Neurophysiology; 

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology: Neurology
  • American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology: Epilepsy

Professional Organization Membership

  • American Academy of Neurology
  • American Epilepsy Society
  • American Clinical Neurophysiology Society

Honors & Awards

  • Yale Center for Clinical Investigation Scholar Award
  • Young Investigator Research Award, American Epilepsy Society
  • Young Investigator Award, American Clinical Neurophysiology Society (ACNS)
  • American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting Scholarship
  • Neurology Resident Teaching Award (UT Southwestern)

Selected Publications

Restoration of brain circulation and cellular functions hours post-mortem.  Vrselja Z, Daniele SG, Silbereis J, Talpo F, Morozov YM, Sousa AMM, Tanaka BS, Skarica M, Pletikos M, Kaur N, Zhuang ZW, Liu Z, Alkawadri R, Sinusas AJ, Latham SR, Waxman SG, Sestan N.Nature. 2019 Apr;568(7752):336-343. doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1099-1. Epub 2019 Apr 17.PMID: 30996318

Assessment of the Utility of Ictal Magnetoencephalography in the Localization of the Epileptic Seizure Onset Zone.  Alkawadri R, Burgess RC, Kakisaka Y, Mosher JC, Alexopoulos AV.JAMA Neurol. 2018 Oct 1;75(10):1264-1272. doi: 10.1001/jamaneurol.2018.1430.PMID: 29889930

The spatial and signal characteristics of physiologic high frequency oscillations.  Alkawadri R, Gaspard N, Goncharova II, Spencer DD, Gerrard JL, Zaveri H, Duckrow RB, Blumenfeld H, Hirsch LJ.Epilepsia. 2014 Dec;55(12):1986-95. doi: 10.1111/epi.12851. Epub 2014 Dec 3.PMID: 25470216 

Cingulate epilepsy: report of 3 electroclinical subtypes with surgical outcomes.  Alkawadri R, So NK, Van Ness PC, Alexopoulos AV.JAMA Neurol. 2013 Aug;70(8):995-1002. doi: 10.1001/jamaneurol.2013.2940.PMID: 23753910 

The connectivity index: an effective metric for grading epileptogenicity.  Yan Q, Gaspard N, Zaveri HP, Blumenfeld H, Hirsch LJ, Spencer DD, Alkawadri R.  Neurosurg. 2019 Sep 27:1-8. doi: 10.3171/2019.4.JNS195. Online ahead of print.PMID: 31561212