Research Coordinator

Adrienne Visani

Staff Research Associate

Since joining the MAC in August 2016, Adrienne works as a research assistant to Dr. Gil Rabinovici on neuroimaging processing and analysis of the many PET scans acquired for MAC patients. She works on projects looking at the topographical distribution of amyloid and tau proteins in early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. She aims to continue research on neurodegeneration as a medical student and physician.

Adrienne grew up in Denver before heading to the West Coast. She completed her B.S. degree in neuroscience from the University of Southern California in 2016. Her interest in neurodegenerative disorders was born in the classroom but grew in the lab, first as a research assistant looking at the role of B cells in multiple sclerosis. Throughout college she worked at USC’s Zilkha Neurogenetic Institute in Dr. Terrence Town’s lab studying how microglia can help and hinder the pathological burden of Alzheimer’s disease in a rat model.

Besides looking at brain images, Adrienne enjoys rock climbing and rock music, hiking and camping, and sharing stories from her time spent abroad in Cape Town, South Africa.

Helen Harrison

Clinical Research Coordinator

Helen Harrison graduated in the spring of 2016 from the University of California, Berkeley with a BA degree in public health. She is interested in neuroscience, behavioral health and medicine, and she hopes to encourage the use of artistic narratives in science and medicine as her academic career progresses. Helen's painting, Learning/Unlearning was published in the 2016 issue of Intima: A Journal of Narrative Medicine.

Prior to working with the Valcour Lab, Helen completed an undergraduate thesis project on the blood-brain barrier as a therapeutic target for cognitive decline in the Kaufer Lab at UC Berkeley and worked in the Regional Mental Health and Chemical Dependency Administration of Kaiser Permanente Oakland studying intravenous and oral ketamine as a therapy for treatment-resistant depression with Dr. Alison McInnes. In her spare time, Helen enjoys the outdoors, listening to podcasts and furthering her art practice.

Viktoriya Bourakova

Staff Research Associate

Viktoriya attended the University of San Francisco and received a degree in psychology, neuroscience, and classical studies. Prior to joining the Memory and Aging Center (MAC), Viktoriya was a research coordinator at the San Francisco VA Medical Center working under Dr. Michael Weiner to examine the effects of traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and Alzheimer’s disease. She later became a research associate and imaging technician involved with projects studying PTSD biomarkers as well as frontotemporal dementia.

Viktoriya joined Dr. Gil Rabinovici’s lab at the MAC in June 2016, working with PET imaging to study hypometabolism, amyloid and tau in neurodegenerative diseases.

Emily Fox

Clinical Research Coordinator

Emily holds a bachelor of arts degree from UC Berkeley, where she majored in psychology and minored in Spanish. During her time at Berkeley she worked in the Gopnik Cognitive Development Lab looking at psychosocial cognition in young children and in the Hafter Lab of Auditory Perception studying semantic processing as it relates to hearing impairment and the development of hearing aids. At the Memory and Aging Center, Emily works primarily on a longitudinal study on healthy aging. Lead by Dr. Joel Kramer, this study looks at the multiplicity of factors that influence cognitive aging in older adults, from lifestyle factors to relevant biomarkers. Additionally, she coordinates a smaller study examining the effects of chronic inflammation on brain aging in healthy elderly individuals and in those with mild cognitive impairment. In her spare time, Emily enjoys practicing yoga and getting outdoors.

Reilly Dever

Clinical Research Coordinator

Reilly graduated from the University of Washington in 2016 with a degree in psychology and a focus in cognitive neuroscience. During her time at the University of Washington, Reilly worked in the GENDAAR Lab at Seattle Children’s Research Institute, in conjunction with Harvard, Yale and UCLA. The study investigated the neurodevelopmental basis of autism spectrum disorder, and it fueled her desire to continue working in clinical neurological research. At the MAC, Reilly works with Dr. Bruce Miller and Dr. Howie Rosen to study familial frontotemporal dementia. In her free time, Reilly enjoys running, yoga, music and art, and exploring new places.

Lauren Chang

Assistant Clinical Research Coordinator

Originally from San Jose, Lauren graduated from the University of Washington – Seattle in 2014 with a degree in psychology. She continued to explore the field of psychology by working as an applied behavior analysis (ABA) therapist for children with autism, which sparked her interest into moving back into the research field. She previously worked at the Center for Imaging of Neurodegenerative Diseases (CIND) within the UCSF Radiology department on two different Alzheimer’s related studies, one looking specifically at possible connections between post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, and Alzheimer’s disease, and the other looking to get FDA approval on a tau PET imaging tracer. At the MAC, Lauren works with Dr. Valcour to coordinate his international acute HIV studies and his HIV over 60 studies.

Jersey Deng

Research Associate

Jersey joined the Seeley Lab in August 2015 as a Research Associate and assists with management and analysis of neuroimaging data. He graduated from UC Berkeley in 2014 with a bachelor's degree in neurobiology. Before joining the Seeley Lab, Jersey was the data manager of the THRIVE Lab at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center where he explored stress and its associations with psychiatric and physical disorders.

Shoshannah Rubin

Clinical Research Coordinator

Shoshannah graduated from Pitzer College in May 2014 where she studied biochemistry. She wrote her honors thesis on the ApoE gene and its potential relationship to longevity and quality of life.

At the Memory and Aging Center, Shoshannah is a clinical research coordinator working on the frontotemporal dementia study called, Frontotemporal Dementia: Genes, Images, and Emotions, under the guidance of Dr. Bruce Miller. Shoshannah is interested in health concerns facing older adults and systemic issues that keep the aging and elderly from accessing care.

Lynn Bajorek

Clinical Research Coordinator

A Portland native, Lynn came to the Bay Area to attend UC Berkeley. She graduated in May 2016 with a degree in cognitive science and a concentration in cognitive neuroscience. As an undergraduate, she worked in the D’Esposito Lab on a project seeking to understand dopamine’s mediation of cognitive control and the contributions of dopamine deficiency to cognitive deficits in Parkinson’s disease. She interned at the Oregon National Primate Research Center and gathered data on the effect of estrogen replacement therapy in post-menopausal rhesus macaques on spatial memory ability. She currently works with Dr. Bruce Miller and Dr. Howie Rosen to study frontotemporal dementia. In her free time, Lynn enjoys yoga and exploring the outdoors.

Kirsten Rogers

Program Manager

Kirsten Rogers joined the MAC team in 2016 as the project manager of the Dementia Care Pathway project, led by Dr. Bruce Miller and Dr. Kate Rankin. This Quest Diagnostics-supported initiative translates best practices in screening, evaluating, and managing dementia and neurodegenerative disease into tools for primary care practitioners and their patients. As project manager, Kirsten works with investigator led teams to pilot, enhance and implement these tools in the community.

Kirsten earned her bachelor’s degree from Stanford University in human biology with concentrations in international health and infectious disease. She is particularly interested in working to address health disparities in marginalized populations and engaging vulnerable communities in research through outreach and education.

In her free time, Kirsten enjoys hiking, marathon running, traveling and volunteering.

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