Main Site "Silo"

Samara Laxineta

NIFD, LEFFTDS, and ARTFL study coordinator

Samara joined the Memory and Aging Center in 2015. She coordinates the Neuroimaging in Frontotemporal Dementia (NIFD) study, the Advancing Research and Treatment for Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration (ARTFL) study, and the Longitudinal Evaluation of Familial Frontotemporal Dementia Subjects (LEFFTDS) study. These longitudinal studies are aimed at determining which imaging modalities and biomarkers help predict the onset and monitor the progression of frontotemporal dementia.

Christine Walsh, PhD

Assistant Professor

Christine M. Walsh, PhD, received her BA degree in physiology from Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin in Ireland. Dr. Walsh did her doctoral work at the University of Michigan studying the effects of REM sleep modulation on learning and memory. She also studied the neural correlates of cognitive aging. In 2011 Dr. Walsh joined the UCSF Memory and Aging Center where she has been studying sleep in both healthy older adults and in individuals with neurodegenerative diseases. Dr. Walsh is particularly interested in the contribution of sleep disturbance to cognitive decline.

Kelly Hitchner

Administrative Manager

Kelly completed her Bachelor of Science degree in molecular biology at the University of California, San Diego in 2011. Kelly has four years of research experience at the Dorris Neuroscience Center at The Scripps Research Institute and the Institute of Regenerative Medicine at UCSF. She joined the UCSF Memory and Aging Center in 2013 and works with Dr. William Seeley to manage the Neurodegenerative Disease Brain Bank.

The value of autopsy

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Genetics and Family Studies

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Eileen Pedersen

Clinical Coordinator

Eileen is a clinical coordinator for the UCSF Memory and Aging Center with a BA degree from Dominican University of California in English.

CJD, a personal story

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Steve, a California physician, whose wife spontaneously developed CJD, shares his experiences with the public. CJD is a rapidly progressive dementia whose study may yield important insights about other, more prevalent dementias. We thank Steve and his children for sharing their stories. Their contribution has contributed to a growing awareness about CJD.

What is a prion?

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Pardis Esmaeili

Research Coordinator

Pardis graduated from San Francisco State University with a bachelor's degree in physiology and a minor in Sexuality Studies in 2010. She has worked on a variety of research projects including looking at neurogenesis in tobacco hornworms in the lab of Dr. Christopher Moffitt, impact of lifestyle and stress on telomere length in the labs of Dr. Elissa Epel and Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn, and intervention programs for patients with diabetes under Principal Investigator Dr. Lawrence Fisher. Her interests in the intersection of biology and psychology have led Pardis to the Memory and Aging Center. Pardis coordinates Dr. Valcour’s UCSF HIV Over-60 Cohort Study and assists with other projects. She is currently pursuing a doctorate degree in physical therapy and especially looks forward to mentoring aspiring queer/LGBT scientists and healthcare professionals.

Valcour Lab website

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