Timothy C. Hain, M.D. Last updated on March 24, 2014
Dr. MingJai Dai died on Feb 7, 2019. He was 72 years old.
A native of Guangzhou in China, Dr. Dai obtained a doctorate in biomedical engineering in Australia before pursuing in 1989 fellowship training with Dr. Bernard Cohen at Mount Sinai, where he stayed for 30 years. In 1992, Dr. Dai was appointed the director of the human vestibular laboratory, through which Dr. Dai provided rigorous clinical testing of dizzy patients. Long engaged in research, Dr. Dai demonstrated originality and special insight regarding velocity storage in recognizing the importance of orientation to the spatial vertical as if with a gyroscope in the head, which had not been considered previously. This insight led to the development of a treatment for mal de debarquement syndrome (MdDS), which he hypothesized to be caused by maladaptation of the vestibulo-ocular reflex. He had patients view a moving pattern of stripes while rocking their heads.
Dr. Dai was empathetic and deeply committed to patient care that he often worked on the weekends to accommodate patients who came from all over the world for his treatment. Dr. Dai was a brilliant scientist who was humble and kind. He was devoted to his family: his wife, daughter, sister, and brother.