Zhen Tian, PhD


Titles and Roles

Assistant Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology
Emory University School of Medicine
Research Program
Discovery and Developmental Therapeutics


Zhen Tian, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Medical Physics in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Emory University School of Medicine. Dr. Tian has a strong interest in research related to innovative imaging methods and guidance, GPU-based fast Monte Carlo dose calculation, adaptive radiotherapy and the application of artificial intelligence in radiotherapy.

Prior to joining Emory, Dr. Tian was in the Therapeutic Medical Physics Residency Program at UT Southwestern Medical Center, where she received two-year extensive clinical training in radiotherapy. Before that, she was an instructor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at UT Southwestern Medical Center.


Dr. Tian obtained her PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Tsinghua University in China in 2011. During her PhD study, she had a one-year study at Department of Radiation Medicine and Applied Sciences at University of California San Diego (UCSD) as a visiting graduate student and then returned to complete a two-year postdoctoral training. She completed her medical physics residency training in the Department of Radiation Oncology at UT Southwestern Medical Center in 2018.


Dr. Tian's research is focused on the application of high-performance computation to advance radiotherapy. She has developed: 1) GPU-based iterative reconstruction algorithms for low dose CT, 4DCT and 4D cone-beam CT, 2) GPU-based fast Monte Carlo dose calculation engines for external photon radiotherapy, Tomotherapy and HDR brachytherapy, 3) analytical linac beam models and automatic beam commissioning algorithm, 4) GPU-based microscopic Monte Carlo simulation package for water radiolysis, 5) multi-GPU-based treatment planning for volumetric modulated arc therapy. She is also a major developer of a GPU-based online replanning system for adaptive radiotherapy.


Dr. Tian serves as reviewer for multiple journals and conferences, including American Association of Physicists in Medicine annual meeting abstract review, International Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology and Physics, Physics in Medicine and Biology, Medical Physics, Radiation Oncology, British Journal of Radiology, IEEE Signal Processing Letters, International Journal of Computer Assisted Radiology and Surgery, and International Journal of Computational Bioscience.

  • PublicationsPublication Date


Dr. Tian has received several awards and honors including American Brachytherapy Society HDR/LDR prostate workshop scholarship in 2018, Norm Baily Postdoctoral Research Award, AAPM Southern California Chapter in 2013 and Norm Baily Student Research Award, AAPM Southern California Chapter in 2010, among others.

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