People

Cande Salazar

ADRC Data Coordinator

Cande joined the Memory and Aging Center as the ADRC Data Coordinator in August 2017. She graduated from the University of California, Davis with a bachelor of arts degree in psychology and a minor in human development. During her time as an undergraduate, she interned at the UC Davis MIND Institute where she assisted in the Infant Sibling Study for the early detection of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). To gain further research experience, she took a position as a research assistant at the Developmental Research Center at UC Davis.

Paul Sampognaro, MD

HS Clinical Instructor

Dr. Sampognaro majored in neurobiology as an undergrad at Georgetown University. There, he worked as a research assistant in the laboratory of Maria Donoghue, studying the molecular underpinnings of Eph/ephrin signaling and its role in cortical neuronal development. After college, he matriculated to the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, where he earned his MD and worked part-time in Charlotte Sumner’s laboratory, quantifying the degree of SMN1 insufficiency in humans with spinal muscular atrophy.

Alejandra Sanchez Lopez, MD

Behavioral Neurology Clinical Fellow

Athena Schlereth

Assistant Autopsy Coordinator

Athena studied Integrative Biology and Classics at UC Berkeley. She was involved in archaeological research and assisted the excavation of a prehistoric cemetery in Greece. On campus, she was a volunteer EMT and worked as a chef for her housing cooperative. Her experiences volunteering in hospice and nursing facilities led her to the Memory and Aging Center, where she assists patients, families, and caregivers with the autopsy program.

Bill Seeley, MD

Professor

Dr. Seeley attended medical school at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine, where he first encountered patients with frontotemporal dementia (FTD) in 1999, during a research elective with Dr. Bruce Miller. He completed a neurology residency at Harvard Medical School, training at the Massachusetts General and Brigham & Women's Hospitals. Returning to UCSF for a Behavioral Neurology fellowship, Dr.

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. 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 MS degree and 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 (MAC).

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