Mary Koestler joined the Memory and Aging Center's Clinical Trials Unit as project administrator and trials nurse in July 2007. Dr. Koestler completed a Master's Degree in Nursing with an emphasis in Clinical Research Management at UCSF followed by a PhD. She currently manages industry-sponsored FDA Phase I-III Alzheimer's disease trials. Dr. Koestler is credentialed by the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP).
Dr. Miller is Professor of Neurology at the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) where he holds the A.W. & Mary Margaret Clausen Distinguished Chair. Dr. Miller is the clinical director of the Memory and Aging Center (MAC) at UCSF, which is funded through the State of California, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the Larry L. Hillblom Foundation, amongst others. Dr. Miller has received many awards including the Potamkin Award from the American Academy of Neurology, the Raymond Adams Lecture at the American Neurological Association, and the Elliot Royer Award from the San Francisco Neurological community.
The busy UCSF dementia center links comprehensive patient evaluations to basic research in neuropsychology, neuropsychiatry, neuroimaging and genetics. Dr. Miller's goal is the delivery of model care to all of the patients who enter the clinical and research programs at the MAC.
Dr. Miller is a behavioral neurologist with a special interest in brain and behavior relationships and has focused his work in the area of dementia. He has many years of experience directing pharmaceutical trials for patients with Alzheimer's disease and directed the UCSF treatment trial for Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease with quinacrine in conjunction with Drs. Stanley Prusiner and Michael Geschwind. He is a leader in consortia focused around developing treatments for progranulin and tau disorders.
At UCSF, Dr. Miller directs an NIH-funded program project on frontotemporal dementia (FTD) called Frontotemporal Dementia: Genes, Images and Emotions. His work with FTD has emphasized both the behavioral and emotional deficits that characterize these patients, while simultaneously noting the visual creativity that can emerge in the setting of FTD. The recognition that dementia patients have many strengths is a guiding principle of the Memory and Aging Center.
Dr. Miller is author of the recent books The Human Frontal Lobes and The Behavioral Neurology of Dementia, and has extensive publications regarding dementia diagnosis and treatment. For nearly two decades, Dr. Miller has been the scientific director for the philanthropic organization The John Douglas French Alzheimer’s Foundation. He is actively involved in patient care at the UCSF clinics and hospital and teaches extensively in the medical school. Dr. Miller runs the Behavioral Neurology Fellowship at UCSF. He was featured on The PBS NewsHour.
Ms. Gearhart received her undergraduate degree in Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania. She began her nursing career at Johns Hopkins Hospital where she worked in acute care. Ms. Gearhart continued working in general medicine at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Medical Center where she was nurse manager. She received her Master's in Nursing Administration at UCSF and is certified as a Gerontological Clinical Nurse Specialist by the American Nurses Association Credentialing Center.
Ms. Gearhart is a Clinical Nurse Specialist and the Administrative Nurse for the Memory and Aging Center. She is also Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Physiology in the School of Nursing. Ms. Gearhart works with families during the comprehensive diagnostic visits and cares for patients in the follow-up clinic. Ms. Gearhart focuses on optimizing the functional status of each patient and maintaining the quality of life for both the patient and caregivers.
In addition to her clinical work, Ms. Gearhart has coordinated the Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study (ADCS) prevention drug trial and focuses her research interests on the study of people at risk for dementia and prevention of decline. She is very interested in investigating the impact of caregiving on families, particularly families involved in the care of frontotemporal dementia patients.