People

Annie Sha

Assistant Clinical Research Coordinator

Annie joined the Memory and Aging Center as an Assistant Clinical Research Coordinator in April 2020 and works on the FTD program project grant, Frontotemporal Dementia: Genes, Images and Emotions. She graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a bachelor of arts degree in psychology and a double major in biology. During her time as an undergraduate, she was a part of the clinical geropsychology lab where she helped test a new measure of naming ability for older adults.

Ranjani Shankar

Assistant Clinical Research Coordinator

Ranjani graduated from the University of California, San Diego with a bachelor’s degree in cognitive science specializing in Clinical Aspects of Cognition. She is extremely interested in and passionate about neurodegenerative disease research, especially Alzheimer’s disease. She now works at the Memory and Aging Center in Dr. Rabinovici’s In Vivo Molecular Neuroimaging Lab.

Phillip Smith

Patient Care Coordinator

Phil Smith is the lead patient care coordinator in the Memory and Aging Center Clinic working with Drs. Adam Boxer, Joanna Hellmuth, Salvatore Spina, Peter Ljubenkov and Aimee Kao.

Karen Smith

Clinical Research Supervisor

Ms. Smith is the clinical research supervisor working directly with the Rabinovici Lab and the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center. She works closely with both faculty and staff in monitoring operational issues, regulatory compliance and project development. Ms. Smith brings many years of experience in clinical and non-clinical trials across a variety of funding mechanisms and disciplines. Prior to coming to the Memory and Aging Center in April 2019, Ms.

Fonda Smith

MAC Operations Specialist

Fonda works closely with the Director of Operations to ensure operational success of the Memory and Aging Center. She oversees a variety of day-to-day administrative operations, including maintenance of the Memory and Aging Center, collaboration and logistical support for​ MAC events, and management of continuing medical education grand rounds. Fonda also serves as an analyst for leadership committees, faculty meetings and Executive and Strategic Planning Committee sessions.

Andrzej Sokolowski, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Andrzej Sokolowski is a postdoctoral fellow in the Perry Lab.

David Soleimani-Meigooni, MD

Behavioral Neurology Clinical Fellow

Salvatore Spina, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor

Dr. Spina received his medical degree from the University of Catania, Italy. He completed a neurology residency at the University of Siena, Italy from which he also obtained his doctorate degree on mechanisms of neurodegeneration. He was trained in neuropathology of dementia syndromes at the Indiana Alzheimer Disease Center, Indianapolis in the laboratory of Dr. Bernardino Ghetti. Later, he completed an internship in internal medicine and a neurology residency at Indiana University. Dr.

Adam Staffaroni, PhD

Assistant Professor

Dr. Staffaroni is neuropsychologist in the UCSF Department of Neurology, Memory and Aging Center. He provides clinical neuropsychological assessments, and his research focuses on predicting disease progression and improving endpoints for clinical trials in neurodegenerative diseases. He obtained a PhD in Clinical Psychology at Palo Alto University, with an emphasis in neuropsychology. He completed a clinical internship at the West Los Angeles VA Health Care System and a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in neuropsychology at the UCSF Memory and Aging Center.

Melanie Stephens, PhD

Clinic Director

Dr. Melanie Stephens directs the Memory and Aging Center Clinic and is an Assistant Professor of Neuropsychology.

Amelia Strom

Staff Research Associate

A Bay Area native, Amelia recently graduated from UC Santa Barbara with a degree in biopsychology. As an undergraduate, she investigated the neural representations of optical illusions using electroencephalography (EEG). After graduation, she returned to the Bay Area to join Dr. Gil Rabinovici’s lab at the Memory and Aging Center as a research associate, where she works with positron emission tomography (PET) to visualize amyloid, tau and glucose metabolism in neurodegenerative disorders.

Virginia Sturm, PhD

Associate Professor

Virginia Sturm, PhD, is the John Douglas French Alzheimer's Foundation Endowed Professor at UCSF. She is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry and the director of the Clinical Affective Neuroscience (CAN) Laboratory that is located in the UCSF Memory and Aging Center and affiliated with the UCSF Center for Psychophysiology and Behavior (CPB).

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