Dr. Xu earned his M.D. at Xiangya School of Medicine in Changsha, Hunan, China, and his master's degree in neural diseases at the Peking University Health Sciences Center. He earned his Ph.D. in stem cell neuroscience at the University of Hamburg and completed an internship at Xiangya Hospital, after which he served as a faculty instructor at that institution's medical school, in the department of anatomy and neurobiology. Dr. Xu arrived at Johns Hopkins in 2010 where he completed a research fellowship in neurology and became a research associate in 2016. He is the president and co-founder of Hopstem Biotechnology Co., LTD and faculty instructor in neurology at Johns Hopkins University's School of Medicine.