Seth A. Smith, Ph.D.

Radiology & Radiological Sciences
Biomedical Engineering
Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences
Associate Director
Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science (VUIIS)
Delivery Address
Medical Center North
1161 21st Avenue South, CCC-1118

Seth Smith, PhD, earned a BS in Physics and a BS in Mathematics from Virginia Tech and a PhD in Biophysics ad Biophysical Chemistry from Johns Hopkins University. After earning his PhD, he joined the research faculty at Kennedy Krieger Institute at the F.M. Kirby Research Center where he remained until 2009.

In 2009, he joined the Vanderbilt faculty as Assistant Professor of Radiology, Biomedical Engineering and Physics. In 2015, he was appointed Associate Professor in Radiology and Radiological Sciences, Biomedical Engineering, and Ophthalmology. He was named to the 2017 class of Chancellor Faculty Fellows. Dr. Smith was appointed Associate Director of the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Sciences (VUIIS) in 2018. In 2020, he was appointed Professor of Radiology and Radiological Sciences.

Since 2010, he has served as Director of the Center for Human Imaging at Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science. His research is focused on translation of advanced, quantitative MRI methods into human diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis and Optic Neuropathies focusing on quantitative assessment of the spinal cord and optic nerves at both high and low field strengths.

Section: Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science


Smith SA, Jones CK, Gifford A, Belegu V, Chodkowski B, Farrell JA, Landman BA, Reich DS, Calabresi PA, McDonald JW, van Zijl PC. Reproducibility of tract-specific magnetization transfer and diffusion tensor imaging in the cervical spinal cord at 3 teslaNMR Biomed. 2010 Feb; 23(2): 207-17. PMID: 19924726, PMCID: PMC2830283, DOI: 10.1002/nbm.1447, ISSN: 1099-1492.

Smith SA, Bulte JW, van Zijl PC. Direct saturation MRI: theory and application to imaging brain ironMagn Reson Med. 2009 Aug; 62(2): 384-93. PMID: 19526497, PMCID: PMC2766589, DOI: 10.1002/mrm.21980, ISSN: 1522-2594.

Zackowski KM, Smith SA, Reich DS, Gordon-Lipkin E, Chodkowski BA, Sambandan DR, Shteyman M, Bastian AJ, van Zijl PC, Calabresi PA. Sensorimotor dysfunction in multiple sclerosis and column-specific magnetization transfer-imaging abnormalities in the spinal cordBrain [print-electronic]. 2009 May; 132(Pt 5): 1200-9. PMID: 19297508, PMCID: PMC2677795, PII: awp032, DOI: 10.1093/brain/awp032, ISSN: 1460-2156.

Smith SA, Golay X, Fatemi A, Mahmood A, Raymond GV, Moser HW, van Zijl PC, Stanisz GJ. Quantitative magnetization transfer characteristics of the human cervical spinal cord in vivo: application to adrenomyeloneuropathyMagn Reson Med. 2009 Jan; 61(1): 22-7. PMID: 19097204, PMCID: PMC2632947, DOI: 10.1002/mrm.21827, ISSN: 1522-2594.

Smith SA, Edden RA, Farrell JA, Barker PB, Van Zijl PC. Measurement of T1 and T2 in the cervical spinal cord at 3 teslaMagn Reson Med. 2008 Jul; 60(1): 213-9. PMID: 18581383, PMCID: PMC2887301, DOI: 10.1002/mrm.21596, ISSN: 0740-3194.

Farrell JA, Smith SA, Gordon-Lipkin EM, Reich DS, Calabresi PA, van Zijl PC. High b-value q-space diffusion-weighted MRI of the human cervical spinal cord in vivo: feasibility and application to multiple sclerosisMagn Reson Med. 2008 May; 59(5): 1079-89. PMID: 18429023, PMCID: PMC2849312, DOI: 10.1002/mrm.21563, ISSN: 0740-3194.

Reich DS, Zackowski KM, Gordon-Lipkin EM, Smith SA, Chodkowski BA, Cutter GR, Calabresi PA. Corticospinal tract abnormalities are associated with weakness in multiple sclerosisAJNR Am J Neuroradiol [print-electronic]. 2008 Feb; 29(2): 333-9. PMID: 17974617, PMCID: PMC2802714, PII: ajnr.A0788, DOI: 10.3174/ajnr.A0788, ISSN: 1936-959X.

Reich DS, Smith SA, Zackowski KM, Gordon-Lipkin EM, Jones CK, Farrell JA, Mori S, van Zijl PC, Calabresi PA. Multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging analysis of the corticospinal tract in multiple sclerosisNeuroimage [print-electronic]. 2007 Nov 11/1/2007; 38(2): 271-9. PMID: 17870615, PMCID: PMC2082136, PII: S1053-8119(07)00678-7, DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2007.07.049, ISSN: 1053-8119.

Gordon-Lipkin E, Chodkowski B, Reich DS, Smith SA, Pulicken M, Balcer LJ, Frohman EM, Cutter G, Calabresi PA. Retinal nerve fiber layer is associated with brain atrophy in multiple sclerosisNeurology. 2007 Oct 10/16/2007; 69(16): 1603-9. PMID: 17938370, PII: 69/16/1603, DOI: 10.1212/, ISSN: 1526-632X.

Hua J, Jones CK, Blakeley J, Smith SA, van Zijl PC, Zhou J. Quantitative description of the asymmetry in magnetization transfer effects around the water resonance in the human brainMagn Reson Med. 2007 Oct; 58(4): 786-93. PMID: 17899597, PMCID: PMC3707117, DOI: 10.1002/mrm.21387, ISSN: 0740-3194.

Farrell JA, Landman BA, Jones CK, Smith SA, Prince JL, van Zijl PC, Mori S. Effects of signal-to-noise ratio on the accuracy and reproducibility of diffusion tensor imaging-derived fractional anisotropy, mean diffusivity, and principal eigenvector measurements at 1.5 TJ Magn Reson Imaging. 2007 Sep; 26(3): 756-67. PMID: 17729339, PMCID: PMC2862967, DOI: 10.1002/jmri.21053, ISSN: 1053-1807.

Reich DS, Smith SA, Jones CK, Zackowski KM, van Zijl PC, Calabresi PA, Mori S. Quantitative characterization of the corticospinal tract at 3TAJNR Am J Neuroradiol. 2006 Nov; 27(10): 2168-78. PMID: 17110689, PMCID: PMC2802715, PII: 27/10/2168, ISSN: 0195-6108.

Smith SA, Farrell JA, Jones CK, Reich DS, Calabresi PA, van Zijl PC. Pulsed magnetization transfer imaging with body coil transmission at 3 Tesla: feasibility and applicationMagn Reson Med. 2006 Oct; 56(4): 866-75. PMID: 16964602, DOI: 10.1002/mrm.21035, ISSN: 0740-3194.

Smith SA, Golay X, Fatemi A, Jones CK, Raymond GV, Moser HW, van Zijl PC. Magnetization transfer weighted imaging in the upper cervical spinal cord using cerebrospinal fluid as intersubject normalization reference (MTCSF imaging)Magn Reson Med. 2005 Jul; 54(1): 201-6. PMID: 15968676, DOI: 10.1002/mrm.20553, ISSN: 0740-3194.

Fatemi A, Smith SA, Dubey P, Zackowski KM, Bastian AJ, van Zijl PC, Moser HW, Raymond GV, Golay X. Magnetization transfer MRI demonstrates spinal cord abnormalities in adrenomyeloneuropathyNeurology. 2005 May 5/24/2005; 64(10): 1739-45. PMID: 15911801, PII: 64/10/1739, DOI: 10.1212/01.WNL.0000164458.02141.06, ISSN: 1526-632X.