Vitaly Napadow, PhD, is an Associate Professor at the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, Mass., where he is also the Director of the Center for Integrative Pain Neuroimaging (CiPNI). Vitaly also holds a secondary appointment at the Pain Management Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He received his PhD in biomedical engineering from the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology program. Dr. Napadow’s laboratory has pioneered the application of non-invasive neuroimaging techniques to better understand the brain circuitry underlying aversive perceptual states, particularly chronic pain, and to better understand how non-pharmacological therapies ameliorate these states. Autonomic homeostatic circuitries play an important role in the processing of somatosensory, cognitive, and affective factors, influencing the malleable experience of pain, and the Napadow Lab has applied human functional and structural neuroimaging to explore how vagal pathways, in particular, modulate pain perception. Dr. Napadow has more than 140 publications in leading peer-reviewed scientific journals and serves on numerous conference, journal, and NIH review panels.


PhD, MIT/HMS HST Medical Engineering and Medical Physics (MEMP) Program

Select Publications

1. Napadow V, LaCount L, Park K, As-Sanie S, Clauw DJ, Harris RE. Intrinsic brain connectivity in fibromyalgia is associated with chronic pain intensity. Arthritis Rheum. 2010 Aug;62(8):2545-55.

2. Lee J, Mawla I, Kim J, Loggia ML, Ortiz A, Jung C, Chan ST, Gerber J, Schmithorst VJ, Edwards RR, Wasan AD, Berna C, Kong J, Kaptchuk TJ, Gollub RL, Rosen BR, Napadow V. Machine learning-based prediction of clinical pain using multimodal neuroimaging and autonomic metrics. Pain. 2019 Mar;160(3):550-560.

3. Maeda Y, Kim H, Kettner N, Kim J, Cina S, Malatesta C, Gerber J, McManus C, Ong-Sutherland R, Mezzacappa P, Libby A, Mawla I, Morse LR, Kaptchuk TJ, Audette  J, Napadow V. Rewiring the primary somatosensory cortex in carpal tunnel syndrome with acupuncture. Brain. 2017 Apr 1;140(4):914-927.


Inventor on awarded and licensed patent: “Systems and methods for Respiratory-gated Auricular Vagal Afferent Nerve Stimulation (RAVANS)”

Co-President of the Society for Acupuncture Research for 8 years

PI of several NIH R01 grants and P01 program project grant titled “Boosting mind-body mechanisms and outcomes for chronic pain”


Napadow Lab
Center for Integrative Pain NeuroImaging (CIPNI)