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Faculty180 – Vita and Individual Profile Data Sheet

Dong Ji, PhD, L.Ac.

Fall 1980 - Fall 2120

Eastern Medicine Department


Current Position

  • Position: Adjunct Faculty


Dr. Dong Ji graduated from Beijing University of Chinese Medicine in 1996 and received his medical degree (equivalent to MD) after the five-year program focused on both Chinese and Western clinical medicine.


With the enthusiasm to discover the scientific basis of acupuncture, he went to the Neuroscience Research Institute at Peking University and completed his Ph.D. with Professor Ji-Sheng Han who had been consecutively funded by National Institutes of Health (NIH, the U.S.) R01 grants for over 25 years for the research on neurobiological basis of pain relief by acupuncture. After he received the doctoral degree in neuroscience, Dr. Ji went to the prestigious SALK institute and the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California for the further research. His research and clinical practice focused on the neuroendocrine diseases and neurological disorders.


Dr. Ji was the editor-in-chief of The World of Traditional Chinese Medicine and the assistant-editor of Chinese Journal of Pain Medicine. He served as a committee member for the Medical Evidence Evaluation Advisory Committee (MEEAC) of the state of California. Dr. Ji presently serves as a reviewer for the journal of Pharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior (published by Elsevier).  He also served as a commissioner for the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM).


As the department chair of Herbology, Dr. Ji teaches classes in multiple postgraduate programs, including ancient classics, clinical applications of herbal medicine, advanced integrative medicine, clinical research, and family medicine courses.  Additionally, Dr. Ji taught integrative medicine courses at UCLA for the 4th-year medical school students, residents and MD fellows. He has been invited to teach and present at different acupuncture schools, conferences and symposiums across the US.


Dr. Ji has his private practices in Del Mar, California.  He also teaches as a clinical faculty and treats patients at the UCSD Neurology Institute clinic in La Jolla, California.

Dr. Ji serves as the treasurer in the board of SDCAPA (San Diego Chinese American Physician Association). He is also a director member for SDCACS (San Diego Chinese Art and Culture Society).  



Ph.D., Neuroscience, Peking University, Beijing, ChinaDissertation: The role of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor in the suppressive effect of electro-acupuncture (EA) on morphine withdrawal and morphine-induced conditional place preference

Professional Licensures (Healthcare)

LAc, California, United States, AC13205, Active, 2009, March 2023

Post-Graduate Training

Type: Post-Doctorate, The Salk Institute , Post-Doctorate, Neuroscience, La Jolla, California, United States, January 2006, August 2008

Work Experience

2006 - 2008

Visiting investigator, Committee on the Neurobiology of Addictive Disorders, The Scripps Research Institute , La Jolla, California, United States

Hospital / Clinical Appointments

Doctor of Chinese Medicine / Acupuncturist, UC San Diego May 2016

Hear from the Students Who’ve Been in Your Shoes

Our Value: Integrative Health, Inclusivity

I chose SCU when looking for a PA program because of their Integrative Medicine approach. I am from Michigan, and not many programs focus on this Integrative, Holistic approach when it comes to patient care in the Midwest, and I felt that was very important for me to learn as a future provider. My transition to semi-virtual learning has been very smooth and quite enjoyable. My favorite part about attending SCU is how tight-knit and diverse the community is. Coming from a large undergrad university and moving so far, it was very important for me to have a PA program that made me feel valued and invested in my success. At SCU, they do a great job of making you feel that.


Brianna Hadley

MSPA Class of 2022

Our Value: Integrative Health

One of the great things about SCU is we do have a campus layout, so all your classes aren't in a single room. We have our cadaver lab. We have different specialty rooms for physical assessment classes vs. acupuncture classes. All our acupuncture-specific classes have all the herbs in the room. You can pull out the herbs and look at them, whether in class or in between classes to get that extra studying in.

My favorite part of SCU is the collaboration from our beginning terms. We were working alongside chiropractor students, PA students, and ayurvedic students. It's a unique community where we get to learn about these different fields and sit in classrooms with them and work with them in the clinic. It allows you to get an understanding of all the different fields and how they can work together, and what is unique about your field. I think that is a wonderful aspect that I didn't think was going to be as prominent as it is here; even now, in my upper term classes and I am not in class with chiropractic students, I can still reach out to them about a certain aspect I may not understand or if I am working on a case. I want another perspective I know I have them to reach out to, so that has been a great networking community to have resources for.

Dr. Jamie Kuljis

Graduate, Doctor of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine

Our Value: Integrative Health, Inclusivity

"There are a lot of things that I love about the program at SCU. The first one is that the faculty come from a long line of Ayurvedic knowledge deeply rooted in ancient classical text. They studied Ayurveda, but they also lived it. When you learn from people who embody this wisdom, it's much easier to grasp this knowledge. The second thing I love is the camaraderie within the cohort. The combination of the training, supportive faculty, and the support of my peers and classmates has given me the confidence I need to start my own practice."

Portia Harris

Student, Ayurveda Program

Our Value: Evidence-Based Practice

Some of my favorite courses at SCU have to be the chiropractic procedure classes; those are the classes you get to hone in on your chiro skills, your palpation skills and ultimately work on the adjustments that make you a chiropractor. Those are the classes I feel enhance my knowledge the most and are some of the reasons I chose to become a chiropractor here are SCU.

On top of chiropractic procedures classes, my favorite is the cadaver lab experience. The cadaver classes opened up my perception of what the human body is made up of. It allowed me to get an in-person perspective of how the body works and looks on the inside. I am genuinely thankful for those experiences because they opened and broadened my horizons to the human body and anatomy in general.

Jordan Vega

Student, Doctor of Chiropractic

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