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DCEC Research


At the Duke Comprehensive Epilepsy Center (DCEC), in addition to providing the highest quality of care to our patients, we are committed to world class research to treat and cure epilepsy. Our scientific program spans a wide range of topics in three distinct areas: basic, translational, and clinical sciences.

Basic Science Research


Our basic science research focuses on understanding the origins and mechanisms of epilepsy in the brain. This includes work on the genetic causes of epilepsy as well as understanding the biochemical pathways responsible for epilepsy. We are also using data from patients with epilepsy to improve our basic understanding of how the brain works.

Gregory Cogan, PhD
Director, Research

James McNamara, MD
Professor of Neuroscience

Translational Science Research


Our translational work focuses on developing advanced tools to diagnose, treat, and cure epilepsy. This includes work on biomarkers in the blood to help with the diagnosis and classification of epilepsy and advanced imaging techniques to help identify parts of the brain responsible for seizures  We are also currently developing new electrode technologies to better identify seizure onset zones for surgery and tools to modulate brain activity to prevent seizures 

Gregory Cogan, PhD
Director, Research

Iain Bruce, PhD
Medical Instructor

Warren Grill, PhD
Professor of Biomedical Engineering

Derek Southwell, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery

John Viventi, PhD
Professor of 

Clinical Research


Our clinical work investigates new techniques for the analysis of EEG and other data from patients with epilepsy, new drugs and devices for treatment of epilepsy, as well as quality and process improvements for a better quality of care for patients. The overall goal of the research program of the DCEC is to provide more extensive and better treatment opportunities for patients suffering from epilepsy.

To find information about clinical trials being done at Duke, please go to

Recent Events


DCEC Quarterly Research Symposium - Winter


Localizing epilepsy "hotspots" quantitative neuroimaging
Kathryn Adamiak Davis, M.D., M.S.T.R.
Assistant Professor of Neurology
University of Pennsylvania

Using Ultrahigh-Resolution Diffusion MRI to Localize Seizure Foci in Patients with Intractable Epilepsy

Iain P. Bruce, PhD
Medical Instructor Department of Neurology 
Duke University


View the Recording Here