mci

Mild Cognitive Impairment

Nagehan Ayakta

Research Associate

Nagehan graduated from University of California, Berkeley in May 2014 with honors and a BA degree in Molecular and Cell Biology-Neurobiology. She completed her honor thesis at the Jagust laboratory under the guidance of Dr. William Jagust and Dr. Sylvia Villeneuve at the Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute. Her main focus was investigating the temporal and spatial pattern of beta-amyloid accumulation in healthy adults.

At the Memory and Aging Center, Nagehan is a research associate working with Dr. Gil Rabinovici and also continues to work with the Jagust laboratory at Berkeley. Currently she is working on a variety of PET imaging projects studying amyloid, hypometabolism, and tau.

Luke Bonham

Research Coordinator

Luke grew up in Southern California before attending UC Berkeley. Graduating with a degree in business administration, he joined the UC San Francisco Memory and Aging Center in 2013. Prior to joining the Memory and Aging Center, he worked in Dr. Dena Dubal’s lab at UCSF to study sex differences in mouse models of neurodegenerative diseases. He currently works with Jennifer Yokoyama, PhD, and Howard Rosen, MD, to study the genetics of healthy aging and neurodegenerative diseases.

In his free time, Luke likes to ski, camp and hike.

Fitness, Aging and Stress (FAST) Study for Family Caregivers

The purpose of this study is to explore the benefits of regular physical activity to adult women and men providing care to family members who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

Summary

Joanna Hellmuth, MD, MHS

Behavioral Neurology Fellow

Joanna Hellmuth, MD, MHS, joined the UCSF Memory and Aging Center in July 2014 as a behavioral neurology fellow. She provides care to patients with various neurodegenerative disorders and collaborates in the evaluation of patients for the Alzheimer's Disease Research Center (ADRC) and frontotemporal dementia program project grant.

Lisa Kritikos

Research Coordinator

Lisa Kritikos joined the Memory and Aging Center in 2014. Her primary role is managing the New Approaches to Dementia Heterogeneity research, which follows patients with the goal of learning more about dementia to improve early detection and clinical care for patients as part of the UCSF Alzheimer's Disease Research Center.

Natanya Russek

Research Coordinator

Natanya Russek graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Madison in 2014 with a degree in neurobiology. At Wisconsin she contributed to research on the development of a stem cell therapy for stroke under the guidance of Dr. Matthew Jensen.

Natanya joined the Memory and Aging Center in May of 2014. She coordinates the study Frontotemporal Dementia: Genes, Imaging and Emotions. This observational study aims to better characterize neurodegenerative diseases such as frontotemporal dementia with the goal of developing better diagnostic tools for the diseases.

Carolyn Fredericks, MD

Behavioral Neurology Fellow

Carolyn Fredericks, MD, joined the UCSF Memory and Aging Center in July 2014 as a behavioral neurology fellow. She completed her AB/ScB degrees at Brown University in classics and neuroscience, then received her MD from Stanford University, where she also completed her internship in internal medicine. She went on to a residency in neurology at Johns Hopkins Hospital and UCSF. Her prior research experience includes studies of genetic influences on corticolimbic circuits in individuals with bipolar disorder, functional neuroimaging studies of reward processing in both healthy and bipolar individuals, and exploration of the inflammatory response to psychosocial stress in healthy young women. She is currently working with Drs. Bill Seeley and Virginia Sturm in an effort to better understand the effects of genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease on psychosocial measures and intrinsic brain connectivity.

Julio C. Rojas, MD, PhD

Behavioral Neurology Fellow

Julio Rojas received his medical degree from the Tecnológico de Monterrey School of Medicine in Monterrey in Nuevo León, Mexico. He completed his doctoral studies in neuroscience at the University of Texas at Austin with a dissertation on Strategies of neuroprotection in an in vivo model of retinal degeneration induced by mitochondrial dysfunction. He completed his neurology residency at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. In 2014, he joined the UCSF Memory and Aging Center where he is a behavioral neurology fellow. Dr. Rojas provides care to patients with various neurodegenerative disorders and collaborates in the evaluation of patients for the Alzheimer's Disease Research Center (ADRC) and frontotemporal dementia program project grant. Dr. Rojas’ is interested in experimental neurotherapeutics, and his research focuses on the use of mitochondrial interventions for cognitive enhancing and neuroprotective purposes and their effects on brain functional connectivity.

Emma Hare

Senior Research Coordinator

Emma is a senior research coordinator working on Dr. Boxer’s clinical trials and is the primary study coordinator for a phase I corticobasal syndrome and progressive supranuclear palsy treatment trial.

Noelle Ohanesian

Asst. Clinical Research Coordinator

Originally from upstate New York, Noelle graduated from Duke University in May 2014 with a Bachelor of Science degree in neuroscience and a history minor. While attending school, she worked as a research assistant in Duke's Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, running a study examining the effects of acute stress on memory retention. She also spent a summer working for the Behavioral Lab in the Duke University Fuqua School of Business studying social mimicry in anorexic subjects. Outside of her academic interests, she worked as the Program Director of Duke’s backpacking organization, Project WILD, in which she directed one- and two-week backpacking programs for the freshmen class. Noelle joined the UCSF Memory and Aging Center in June 2014 as a member of the clinical trials team under Dr. Adam Boxer. She is a research coordinator for the asymptomatic Alzheimer’s disease trial.

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